Sports

Wed
01
May
MTT News Desk's picture

Net gains for tennis Cards

Some of the state’s top boys tennis programs competed in the Verona Invitational last Friday and Saturday.

And Middleton showed it was the near the top of the food chain.

The Cardinals went 3-1 on the weekend with wins over Sheboygan North, Waukesha West and Brookfield Central. Middleton’s only loss came to Nicolet.

Here’s a recap of Middleton’s weekend.

• Nicolet 5, Middleton 2 — Cardinals No. 1 singles player Ben Luskin notched an impressive 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 win over Nicolet’s Kevin Ballecer. Middleton also got a win at No. 4 singles, where Tyler Markel posted a 6-7 (5), 6-1, 6-2 victory over Nicolet’s Rafi Barash.

But Middleton dropped all three doubles matches and lost the other two singles matches.

• Middleton 6, Sheboygan North 1 — The Cardinals rolled through all four singles flights and notched victories in two of the three doubles matches.

Wed
24
Apr
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Boys track team wins Watertown Invite

Back in 2011, Middleton’s boys track and field team was headed to the Watertown Invitational for the first time.
Cardinals head coach Isaac Mezera rose to give his speech on the bus ride over. And Mezera thought he’d have a little fun with it.
“I said, ‘Guys, we are undefeated at this meet, let’s keep it that way,’” Mezera recalled. “I was a joke. Now it has become a tradition.”
Indeed it has.
Middleton notched a third straight title at the seven-team Watertown Invite with an impressive showing Saturday. The Cardinals finished with 159 points and edged runner-up Janesville Craig (157). 
“It sets a good tone for the season winning our first outdoor invitational,” mezera said. “Hopefully we can use it as some positive momentum in such a rainy year.”
They should, as Middleton had several top performances along their way to the championship.
Wed
24
Apr
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Boys tennis team shines

Middleton’s boys tennis team went 3-1 at the Madison Memorial Invite last Saturday.
Middleton defeated Sun Prairie, 7-0, and rolled past Madison Memorial, 6-1. The Cardinals fell to Homestead, 7-0, and rolled past Green Bay Preble, 5-2.
All four Middleton singles players went 3-1 on the day.
Cardinals top singles player Ben Luskin defeated Keegan Moldenhauer, 6-1, 6-0. Luskin then toppled Madison Memorial’s Andrew Liu, 6-1, 6-0. After falling to a Homestead player, Luskin defeated Green  Bay Preble’s Brad Maccoux, 6-1, 6-0.
Joey Niesen, Middleton’s No. 2 player, opened with a 6-4, 6-0 win over Sun Prairie’s Yuri Drenoske, then downed Madison Memorial’s Chris Diaczun, 6-4, 7-5. Niesen fell to a Homestead player, then rolled past Green Bay Preble’s Hoain Thai, 6-0, 6-0.
Wed
24
Apr
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Girls softball team tops La Follette

It wasn’t the most orthodox way to win a game.
But Middleton’s girls softball team didn’t mind.
Madison La Follette ace Nicole Newman hurled a no-hitter and struck out 18 Middleton batters Monday afternoon. But the visiting Cardinals rallied for a ninth inning run and upended the Lancers, 1-0.
“It was a really fun game to watch and be a part of,” Middleton manager Arin Oppermann said. “It was obvious from the time we stepped off the bus that they were ready to play some ball.  
“At no point in the game was I worried we wouldn't come out ahead. Between our solid defense and the energy they brought to the field, I knew good things were going to happen. They played hard, maintained their focus, and kept their energy up throughout the entire game. I’m so proud of those girls.”
Middleton pitcher Ashley Stzzormer threw a complete-game shutout, struck out seven and picked up the win. 
Wed
24
Apr
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MHS girls on the right track

With the spring weather being more miserable than any in recent memory, teams have had a hard time gauging just where they stand.
After last Saturday’s Watertown Invite, though, Middleton’s girls track and field team felt awfully good about itself.
Neenah won the eight-team event with 143 points, while the Cardinals and Janesville Craig tied for second at 116.
“Finishing second overall was a great morale booster,” Middleton coach Tara Franklin said.
Rightfully so.
Middleton’s distance teams led the way.
Bobbi Patrick, Darcy Dean, Rachel Wians and Sam Valentine took first place in the 3,200 meter relay with a time of 10:08.46. That’s currently the fourth best time on the state honor roll.
Middleton’s 1,600-meter relay team of Patrick, Emily Zeker, Kayla Bauhs and Anna Garren was first in 4:11.54. That’s the fifth-best time on the state honor roll.
Wed
24
Apr
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Girls soccer team starts strong

Middleton’s girls soccer team had an impressive week, winning three of its four games. The Cardinals improved to 4-1 on the year.
Here’s a recap of Middleton’s week:
• Middleton 2, Oshkosh West 1 — The Cardinals scored twice in the final eight minutes and notched an impressive win over the Wildcats Saturday morning.
Trailing, 1-0, junior Leah Peterman beat a pair of defenders down the right side and slotted the ball to Ellen Jesse three yards off the goal line. Jesse then tapped it into the goal to tie the game, 1-1, in the 72nd minute. 
Five minutes later, Caroline Keenan was trapped on the right side with few options, then sent a diagonal cross to the weak side. Brenna Shea was waiting, and headed it into the back of the net to give Middleton a 2-1 lead.
“It was a great team effort with multiple players putting time on the field,” Middleton coach Mary Duffy said. “And it was a good come from behind win.”
Wed
24
Apr
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Baseball Cards spilt a pair

Middleton’s baseball team has spent most of the spring starving for games.

Saturday afternoon, the Cardinals had a chance for a feast.

Unfortunately for Middleton, it left the dinner table still hungry.

The Cardinals toppled Beloit Memorial, 3-2, in the first of two games played that day. In the second game, though, Madison West toppled the Cardinals, 3-2, in 10 innings.

Middleton is now 2-1 on the young season

“Our pitching has been really good so far,” said Middleton manager Tom Schmitt, whose game against Madison La Follette Tuesday was rained out. “Our hitting has a ways to go.”

In the Cardinals’ win over Beloit Memorial, Brian Lochner went 2-for-3. Both Jackson Keeler and Reese Felton had doubles, as well.

Middleton scored all three of its runs in the first inning.

With two outs, Brian Lochner singled and stole second base. Tanner Meinholz reached on an error and Casey Miller followed with a run-scoring single.

Wed
17
Apr
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Bremser, Mezera named co-cross country coaches

They’ve worked together for 11 years now.

Egos aren’t an issue. And both wanted the family approach inside the cross country program to remain.

So Middleton staples Isaac Mezera and Cindy Bremser will team up beginning this fall and share the boys and girls head cross country positions. Both are long-time assistants and will replace Joe Spolar, who retired last fall after 20 years in the program.

“Because of our close work together, Isaac and I felt that co-head coaching would be the best way to continue the cross country program,” said Bremser, a former Olympian. “We feel we have a very successful program having the boys and girls together. 

“Cross country is a participatory sport, and even though our numbers have grown, we are passionate in keeping everyone involved. To me success is not only measured by having competitive teams and athletes, but by allowing each athlete to participate and grow as a person.”

Wed
17
Apr
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Middleton races past Sun Prairie

Manager Tom Schmitt takes a lot of pride in his Middleton baseball team executing the basic fundamentals.

So Schmitt couldn’t have been more pleased with the results of the Cardinals’ long-awaited season-opener on Tuesday afternoon.

Senior right-hander Brian Lochner scattered five hits as Middleton executed its “small ball” strategy on offense to perfection. That plan of attack helped Middleton topple Sun Prairie, the defending WIAA Division 1 state champs, in a Big Eight Conference prep baseball game.

Junior right fielder Matt Ash and senior center fielder Kenji Passini executed sacrifice bunts on back-to-back at-bats in the fourth inning to help Middleton rally from an early deficit.

“We had the right situation with the right kids up,” Schmitt said. “It was the right time and in that situation it’s easier to get a run.”

Mon
15
Apr
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Health Care Reform Will Have Sweeping Impact On Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District

The way the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District currently provides health insurance to its employees will grow increasingly unsustainable as key provisions of the Affordable Care Act fall into place in the coming years.

According to a report by Milliman, Inc., an independent actuarial and consulting firm, the district’s annual health care costs are projected to be $1.8 million higher by the year 2018 than they would have been in the absence of federal health care reform. (Their estimates show costs would be more than $3.2 million higher using a more grim set of fiscal assumptions.)

The figures, which were presented to the Middleton-Cross Plains Area Board of Education Monday night, reflect total plan costs, including what employers and employees pay.

The prospect of higher prices should prompt district leadership to consider major changes to employee contribution levels, insurance eligibility, plan designs and wellness incentives, advised Milliman.

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