Sports

Thu
17
Dec
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If there’s a hockey season, Middleton believes it can shine

There are no promises.

No guarantees.

So Middleton hockey coach Dan Truehl is searching for four-leaf clovers and stockpiling horseshoes — anything to give the Cardinals some luck.

Public Health Madison & Dane County issued Emergency Order #10 on Nov. 17, which prohibits indoor gatherings of any size. That order ended on Dec. 16, and Truehl was optimistic that at that point, his team could begin doing socially-distanced workouts again.

If the Cardinals showed the ability to do that successfully, perhaps they could eventually have some type of season.

Fri
11
Dec
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Swimmers thinking big — if they have a season

Danny Lynam knows his team might be overlooked.

They might be disregarded, discounted, ignored.

And that’s just fine with Middleton’s boys swimming and diving coach.

The Cardinals graduated an enormous amount of talent from the group that won the WIAA Division 1 state title in February. And if Middleton eventually has a season, Lynam and the Cardinals have no problem being the hunter instead of the hunted.

“I think a lot of people would have counted us out. However, I think we could surprise a number of people with the success we would have,” Lynam said. “When you have a team as large and deep as ours you always have the next group of guys ready to go.

“We have a number of guys that get pushed down or overlooked, just because we have so much depth at the top end. In a normal year there are guys swimming JV that would normally be varsity on most other teams in our conference, and with so many spots to fill, this would be their year to shine.”

Fri
11
Dec
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Gymnasts hoping for chance to strut their stuff

Kari Steck took over Middleton’s girls gymnastics program in 2010.

The past decade has seen tremendous success and growth.

The Cardinals have been to the WIAA Division 1 state tournament eight times. Middleton has three top-five finishes at state in that time.

And the Cardinals have crowned a pair of individual state champions — Karina Sabol in the vault (2018) and Madeline Pflasterer-Jennerjohn in the uneven bars (2017).

Now, Steck is simply crossing her fingers that her 11th season will take place.

While teams across the state began practicing Nov. 16 and many will have their first meets this week, things are on hold at MHS. Public Health Madison & Dane County issued Emergency Order #10 on Nov. 17, which prohibits indoor gatherings of any size.

While Steck is optimistic her team will eventually have a season, the Cardinals are currently in a holding pattern.

Thu
03
Dec
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MHS' girls basketball team is hoping for a chance to show its stuff

When you saw them last, Middleton’s girls basketball team was on the brink of the first WIAA Division 1 state championship in school history.

The Cardinals had reached the state tournament and were the No. 1 seed. Then, the WIAA cancelled the state tournament due to fears surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, Middleton head coach Jeff Kind is simply hoping people will get a chance to see his team play in the 2020-21 season.

While teams across the state began practicing Nov. 16 and many have already had multiple games, things are on hold at MHS. Public Health Madison & Dane County issued Emergency Order #10 on Nov. 17, which prohibits indoor gatherings of any size.

While Kind is optimistic his team will eventually have a season, the Cardinals are currently in a holding pattern.

Thu
03
Dec
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Boys basketball team has high hopes — if they have a season

One contact day.

One marvelous, glorious, socially distanced contact day.

That’s what Middleton’s boys basketball team experienced last month before Public Health Madison & Dane County issued Emergency Order #10, which has prohibited indoor gatherings of any size.

In that short amount of time, Cardinals coach Kevin Bavery saw what he anticipated all summer — he has a team that could surprise.

Now, if Middleton can get clearance to have some type of season, Bavery and the Cardinals believe big things could await.

“The biggest challenge of course is not seeing any of these players since last March,” Bavery said. “The brief glimpse we had with one contact day before we paused as a district showed us that a lot of players have changed physically.

Thu
19
Nov
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Middleton's Beckman now a Badger

Jacob Beckman is now officially a Badger.

Beckman, a senior at Middleton High School, signed his National Letter of Intent last week to play men’s golf at the University of Wisconsin.

Beckman had made a verbal commitment to play for the Badgers in Dec., 2019, then made it official last week.

“We continue to prioritize the top players from Wisconsin and we are thrilled to have Jacob join the program,” Wisconsin coach Michael Burcin said. “He comes from a very competitive high school golf environment. Moving to the Madison area from the northeast a few years ago, he will be familiar and comfortable in Madison and playing golf all over the nation.”

Beckman’s achievements include:

• No. 1 ranked player in Wisconsin by Wisconsin.golf.

• Fifth place at the 2020 WPGA Junior Championship.

• Fifteenth place at the 2020 Wisconsin Junior Boys Championship.

• Fourth place at the 2020 Lake Arrowhead Invitational.

Thu
19
Nov
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MHS pushes pause button on winter sports

In Greek mythology, Sisyphus received the eternal punishment of rolling an immense boulder up a hill in the depth of Hades. Every time Sisyphus neared the top, the boulder would roll back down the hill.

Middleton athletic director Jamie Sims can relate.

Winter sports began across the state Monday, and Sims had recently instituted a plan that allowed the Cardinals’ teams to begin practicing. After a recent spike in cases of COVID-19, though, Sims was forced to pump the brakes a bit.

Public Health Madison & Dane County issued Emergency Order #10 Tuesday, which prohibits indoor gatherings of any size. Outdoor gatherings are permitted with 10 people or less, with physical distancing. 

The order began Wednesday and will remain in effect until Dec. 16.

So for now, all sports — and practices — at MHS are once again on hold.

“I have COVID whiplash,” Sims said. “But we’re not going to quit trying.”

Fri
06
Nov
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Winter coaches putting together a plan

There are no guarantees of competitions this winter.

No promises of scrimmages, games or postseasons.

When winter sports begin later this month, though, Middleton High School will give its teams the chance to practice.

Oh, things will look dramatically different than they have in the past. But the Cardinals’ various teams will do everything possible to prepare for a season they hope will come in time.

“Right now, we just have no idea what might happen with some of the restrictions inside Dane County,” boys basketball coach Kevin Bavery said. “So, we’ll do what we can and hope that things work out where we can have some type of season.

“All I know is that something is better than nothing. And right now, getting the kids back in the gym is progress.”

Here’s a look at each winter sports, when they’re scheduled to begin and what their “new normal” might look like.

 

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Fri
30
Oct
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COVID taking a toll on youth sports

Organized sports are starting to return for youth of all ages, though as of September, they are still half as active as they were prior to the pandemic. Parents are more willing to let their children play, and to spend money to support those activities, despite increasing concerns about the risks of COVID-19 transmission as well as transportation and scheduling concerns with school starting up again. Meanwhile, a growing number of youth have no interest in returning to the primary sport they played pre-pandemic – nearly 3 in 10 now.

Those are high-level takeaways from a national survey of parents conducted by The Aspen Institute’s Project Play. Below is a deeper dive on trends that are happening since the pandemic hit.

 

40%

Families whose child played their primary sport at least 4 days per week before COVID-19

Fri
30
Oct
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UW  study shows school sports don’t increase cases of COVID-19

A ground-breaking study from researchers at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health has found that "...participation in sports is not associated with increased risk of COVID-19 among Wisconsin high school student-athletes."

Published by Drew Watson, MD, MS, a Team Physician for University of Wisconsin Athletics and member of the Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation at the University of Wisconsin, the study provides a more clear picture of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on high school athletics. It follows up on a study released in June that examined the significant mental health impacts on student-athletes during the sports shutdown and school closures of the spring.

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