Sports

Fri
23
Jul
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Middleton's 'Best of the Best'

They did a remarkable job working through a pandemic.

Then they had an incredible year when sports resumed.

Middleton’s girls sports teams had a terrific 2020-21 school year, and here the Times-Tribune has selected the best of the best.

This week, we’ll honor the girls, and next week we’ll recognize the boys.

Teams of the Year: Golf, tennis and cross country

It’s impossible to pick just one team here.

That’s because all three teams bypassed the fall season, competed in the alternate spring and won state championships.

Middleton’s tennis team was the first to capture gold.

The Cardinals rolled through the Monona Grove Sectional and earned the No. 2 seed at state.

Middleton opened with a 6-1 win over third-seeded Ashwaubenon.

Fri
23
Jul
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Middleton topples Black Earth

BLACK EARTH – A solid one-two punch on the mound combined with key defensive plays and timely hitting was the perfect formula for victory for the Middleton 29ers last Friday night.

Brady Schmitt and Drew Farrell combined to scatter 10 hits and limit host Black Earth to one earned run. Middleton also made the most of its four hits on offense to secure a 5-2 victory over the Bombers in a Northern Section Home Talent League amateur baseball game.

With the playoffs rapidly approaching, the victory kept the 29ers in the race for a higher seed and home field advantage in the early rounds of the postseason.

Cross Plains is 7-2 overall and has a ½-game lead over Ashton (6-2) in the East Division. Middleton (6-3) is one game behind the Businessmen.

Tue
13
Jul
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Six soccer Cards named all-Big 8

Middleton’s girls soccer team landed six players on the all-Big Eight Conference team.

Senior midfielder Victoria Bunz and sophomore forward Marley Mladucky were both named first-team all-conference.

Senior defender Ella D’Orazio was named second-team all-Big Eight. And senior midfielder Anna Mintz, senior forward Alaina Malak and sophomore forward Dalina Jonuzi were all named honorable-mention all-league.

Bunz, one of Middleton’s captains, was a four-year varsity player.

She finished the year with nine goals, four game-winning goals and four assists. She finished her Middleton career with 27 goals, nine game-winning goals and 20 assists.

Bunz was an honorable-mention all-conference player in 2018 and a second-team all-conference selection in 2019 (the 2020 season was canceled due to COVID). She’ll continue her soccer career at Providence beginning this fall.

Tue
13
Jul
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Six baseball Cards named all-league

Middleton’s baseball team had an unforgettable season, one that ended one win shy of state.

So it came as no surprise the Cardinals placed six players on the all-Big Eight Conference baseball team.

Senior pitcher Aidan Williams was named first-team all-conference and junior Easton Zempel was named first-team at-large. Zempel was also named honorable-mention All-District.

Junior outfielder Matthew Zimmerman was named second-team all-conference, while senior pitcher Tyler Pincombe, junior outfielder Erik Pongratz and senior infielder Karson Wilson were named honorable-mention all-conference.

Williams threw 30 1/3 innings, struck out 33 and allowed just 24 hits, He finished with a 1.84 ERA and went 4-2 overall.

“Aidan was lights out for us this year,” Middleton manager Brent Jorgensen said. “In his first 26.2 innings, he only gave up three earned runs.

Tue
13
Jul
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Middleton's HTL team splits a pair

There are just three weeks left in the Home Talent League season.
And Middleton knows it probably can't stumble again if it hopes to claim the Northern Section’s East Division title.

That’s why Sunday was so big for the 29ers.

Middleton fell to Plain, 11-6, last Friday. But the 29ers rebounded with a 10-0 win over Reedsburg Sunday in a game stopped after seven innings.

Middleton now sits in third place in the division at 5-3, but well within striking distance of first place Cross Plains (6-2) and second place Ashton (5-2).

“We really needed to bounce back after the tough loss on Friday night and we did just that,” Middleton manager Brandon Hellenbrand said.

Middleton scored five runs in the first inning against Reedsburg and never looked back. Ross Hellenbrand worked six scoreless innings and Drew Farrell finished up.

Tue
13
Jul
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Calvin headed to All-Star Game

Middleton’s Quinn Calvin will compete in the Wisconsin Football Coaches Association All-Star Game Saturday.

Calvin will play for the South team in the Large School game, which will be held at UW-Oshkosh’s Titan Stadium at 5 p.m. The 8-man All-Star game will be held at 10 a.m. and the Small School game follows at 1:30 p.m.

Calvin, who played both defensive back and running back at Middleton, will play football and compete in track and field at UW-Stevens Point beginning this fall.

 

Tue
13
Jul
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Sauk Prairie sneaks past Ashton

SAUK CITY – The Home Talent League playoffs are nearly three weeks away, but there was a party-like atmosphere at Chuck Hall Memorial Field on Sunday afternoon.

With the unbeaten Sauk Prairie Twins hosting the once-beaten Ashton As, a standing-room only crowd was treated to a preview of postseason baseball at its best.

Right-hander Connor Leister tossed a five-hit complete game, and veterans Lucas Koenig and Chucky Schara each provided clutch hits to spark Sauk Prairie to a thrilling 2-1 victory in HTL Northern Section action.

Sauk Prairie improved to 8-0, leads the Western Division and has the best overall record in the HTL’s Northern Section. Ashton fell to 5-2 and is ½-game behind Cross Plains (6-2) in the East Division.

Thu
08
Jul
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Middleton's Hebert named Player of the Year

Olivia Hebert was one of the state’s finest hitters.

She was a captain, a leader and a huge reason Middleton’s girls softball team finished in third place in the Big Eight Conference.

After an enormous season, Hebert — a catcher — was also named the Big Eight Conference’s Player of the Year.

Senior center fielder CC Hiorns was named first-team all-Big Eight and senior pitcher Ellie Buza was named second-team all-conference. Senior third baseman Abby Zumbrunnen, junior shortstop Jenna Redders and freshman utility player Mackenzie Zimmerman were all named honorable mention all-league.

Hebert had one of the finest years in school history.

Hebert batted .592 with a .673 on-base percentage and a 1.316 slugging percentage. She had 13 home runs, 52 RBI, 12 doubles, scored 39 runs, walked 14 times and had just two strikeouts.

Thu
08
Jul
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Middleton golfers earn honors

Their year was packed with memorable moments.

A Big Eight Conference championship. A sectional title. And a third place finish at the WIAA Division 1 state meet.

So it’s no surprise that Middleton’s boys golfers had three players earn first-team all-conference honors. That same trio received all-state honors, as well.

Senior Jacob Beckman was the Big Eight’s Player of the Year and was named first-team all-state by the Golf Coaches Association of Wisconsin. Junior Alec Sosnowski was named first-team all-league and third-team all-state. And freshman Dain Johnson was named first-team all-conference and honorable-mention all-state.

In addition, Tom Cabalka was named the Big Eight’s Coach of the Year.

“This year’s squad was young and talented,” Cabalka said.

The all-Big Eight team is determined by an individual’s top three conference matches, the Big Eight Conference Tournament and three at-large invitationals.

Thu
08
Jul
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Businessmen rally past 29ers

An early six-run explosion set the stage for a holiday celebration for the visiting Cross Plains Businessmen on Sunday.

It was Drew Meinholz’s only hit of the game, though, that capped a perfect weekend.

Meinholz lined a two-out single to left field to score Garret Pertzborn from third base as Cross Plains edged Middleton, 7-6, in 12 innings in a Northern Section East Division Home Talent League amateur baseball game.

“It’s huge in the standings,” Cross Plains manager Randy Meinholz said. “We had a helluva a game at Reedsburg (Saturday). It was a battle. I don’t know where these guys got the energy today. I could see it getting away from us, but they hung in there.”

Cross Plains, which edged host Reedsburg, 5-3, on Saturday, improved to 5-1 in the Northern Section’s East Division. Ashton is also 5-1, Middleton fell to 4-2.

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