Sports

Wed
07
Nov
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Middleton swimmers chasing greatness

As the adage goes, nobody is perfect.

But don’t tell that to coach Lauren Cabalka and Middleton’s girls’ swimming team.

The two-time defending WIAA Division 1 state champion Cardinals are within reach of a third consecutive perfect season.

Cabalka said the Cardinals’ will to win is strong.

“This senior class, the only meet they lost was freshman year when they got second at state,” said Cabalka, who is in her ninth season as head coach. “They’ve won every other meet.”

Senior captain Hannah Aegerter, the team’s lone top seed at state, said Middleton won’t give up its championship hopes without a fight.

“It’s been amazing,” Aegerter said of the unbeaten streak. “It’s just crazy how much we’ve grown as a team, especially for us seniors. We’re taking it all in. We will be sad to leave all the success that we’ve had.”

Wed
07
Nov
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Middleton swimmers win sectional title

There was joy, euphoria, happiness and delight.

Then came confusion, bewilderment and frustration.

Middleton’s girls’ swimming and diving team — the two-time WIAA Division 1 state champion — won its own sectional last Saturday.

The Cardinals won the meet with 317 points, while Sun Prairie was a close second at 312. Madison West (291), Verona-Mount Horeb (289) and Madison Memorial (250) rounded out the top five.

It should have never been that close, though.

Middleton’s 400 freestyle relay team — one that would have contended for a state title — was disqualified for false starting and is now ineligible to compete at the state meet.

“It was incredibly tough to end the meet with a disqualification to our 400 free relay,” Middleton coach Lauren Cabalka said. “This is one of the top relay teams in the state and certainly would have contended for a state title. 

Wed
07
Nov
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Boys spikers headed back to state

Middleton’s boys’ volleyball team has done it again, and this time they did it in dramatic fashion. 

For the sixth year in a row and the 11th time in school history, the Cardinals are headed to the WIAA Division 1 state volleyball tournament at Wisconsin Lutheran College in Milwaukee.

Top-seeded Middleton rallied from a 2-1 deficit and notched a thrilling, 25-16, 19-25, 21-25, 25-21,15-8 win over third-seeded Kettle Moraine in a sectional final held last Thursday at Madison Memorial High School.

Middleton is just the third team in Wisconsin history to make it to the state boys volleyball tournament six consecutive years. Waukesha (1950-1961) and Marquette University High School (2002-2018) are the others.

The Cardinals’ 11th state appearance is now tied for the fifth-most appearances in state history.

Wed
07
Nov
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Five MHS spikers named all-Big 8

Middleton’s girls’ volleyball team didn’t enjoy quite the level of success it was hoping for in 2018.

But the Cardinals still brought home some postseason awards.

Senior outside hitter Lily Welti and senior middle blocker Hannah Flottmeyer were named first-team all-Big Eight Conference.

Senior outside hitter Keller Frinzi was named second-team all-conference, while senior setter Rachael Roberts and senior defensive specialist Olivia Farin were named honorable-mention all-league.

Welti led the Cardinals with 260 kills, a total that also ranked fourth in the Big Eight Conference. Welti was also first on the team with 350 digs, which ranked seventh in the league.

In addition, Welti was fourth on the team in aces (31) and third in serves received (366).

“Lily was one of our tri-captains,” Middleton coach Franco Marcos said. “She was our go-to player. She led our team in kills for the last three seasons.  

Wed
07
Nov
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Soccer Cardinals named all-Big Eight

Ben Kollasch was hoping for more.

Middleton’s boys’ soccer coach guided a team that finished second in the Big Eight Conference this season, its best finish in six years.

But when it came to all-conference voting, the Cardinals didn’t have a single player earn first-team honors.

“I attribute this to the whole team and the whole bench contributing and doing their job consistently,” Kollasch said. “We did not need superstars to achieve what we did.”

The Cardinals did have eight players recognized.

Senior forward Andrew Lund, senior midfielder Bryce Schuster and junior defender Peter Tuttle all received second-team all-conference honors. Junior keeper Ben Scher, sophomore forward Ezra Joseph, senior midfielder Greg Pauly, along with junior defensemen Cian Carlson and Blake Kalscheur all received honorable-mention all-conference honors.

Thu
01
Nov
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Boys XC team second at state

There’s just one problem when you’re No. 1.

There’s nowhere to go but down.

Everybody guns for you. The target on your back is the size of Montana.

Middleton’s boys’ cross country team found that out the hard way last Saturday.

The Cardinals had a sensational performance at the WIAA Division 1 state meet where they finished second overall behind champion Neenah.

Just one problem. Middleton — the defending state champions — expected to be first again.

So when the final scores went up on the board at The Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids, Middleton’s reaction was predictable.

“The boys were pretty devastated when the scoreboard showed we placed second,” said Middleton coach Brian Finnel. “Any other year, we are probably stoked about second, but this is a unique bunch who expected to win. We had the pieces to win, but the stars just didn't quite align for us.” 

Middleton senior standout Caleb Easton agreed.

Thu
01
Nov
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Middleton's Meicher picks Minnesota

The past year has been a stressful one for arguably the finest wrestler in Middleton High School history.

As Kevin Meicher tried sorting out his future, the Cardinals’ star weighed bigger colleges against smaller ones. He judged them on education, fit and where various coaches envisioned him in the lineup.

Finally, when Meicher added everything up, he decided the University of Minnesota was his perfect next home. Meicher made a verbal commitment to the Gophers last week. Athletes can sign their national letter of intent beginning on Nov. 14.

“The process was definitely a long stressful one and took a lot of contemplation,” Meicher said. “I had to weigh out a lot of things such as if I would start or where I would be giving myself the best opportunities for academics and athletics.”

Meicher has had a brilliant career at Middleton.

Thu
01
Nov
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MHS swimmers win Big 8 title

The streak goes on.

And not even a costly penalty could derail Middleton’s girls’ swimming and diving team.

The Cardinals rolled to a ninth straight Big Eight Conference title on Oct. 27, cruising to the championship in their own pool.

Middleton, the two-time WIAA Division 1 state champions, finished with 546.5 points to easily outdistance runner-up Sun Prairie (448). Madison West was third at 419, while Madison Memorial (415.5) and Verona/Mount Horeb (297) rounded out the top five.

“This was a very solid meet for us and a great start for our postseason play,” Middleton coach Lauren Cabalka said.

Amazingly, Middleton won despite having its 86 points from the 500-yard freestyle wiped away. In that event, senior Makenna Licking finished first, while senior Hannah Aegerter was second. Senior Anna Thomley was fourth, freshman Molly Haag was fifth, sophomore Sarah Foley was eighth and freshman Amanda George was ninth.

Thu
01
Nov
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Boys spikers win playoff opener

They are off and running.

And if Middleton’s boys volleyball team keeps playing like it did Oct. 26, a sixth straight state tournament berth certainly seems possible.

Middleton cruised past Waukesha North, 25-10, 25-9, 25-10, in a regional final. The Cardinals advanced to a sectional semifinal against Madison West Tuesday.

If Middleton won there, it would meet either Madison Memorial or Kettle Moraine in a sectional final Thursday at Madison Memorial at 7 p.m.

“Since the sport of boys volleyball is growing, some sectionals now have eight teams,” Middleton coach Ben White said. “Our sectional is one of those and it's the first time in quite a few years we've had to play in a regional match. Waukesha North is a team that is definitely rebuilding and it shows as they have multiple players on their team that are freshmen and sophomores with a few juniors and seniors.”

Thu
01
Nov
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Four MHS golfers named all-Big 8

It was a memorable year for Middleton’s girls golf program.

The Cardinals cruised through the Big Eight Conference’s regular season and postseason. Middleton won regional and sectional titles, then finished second at the WIAA Division 1 state meet.

So it shouldn’t have been a surprise that Middleton was well-represented on the all-Big Eight Conference team.

Junior Kate Meier was named the conference’s Player of the Year. Sophomore Glenna Sanderson was named first-team all-conference, while freshman Ellie Frisch and junior Makenzie Hodson were both named second-team all-conference.

Middleton coach Becky Halverson was also named the league’s Coach of the Year.

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