Sports

Thu
09
May
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Middleton's softball team routs West

The horrendous spring weather means softball teams everywhere will be playing almost daily down the stretch — weather permitting, of course.

Middleton is certainly in that same boat.

The Cardinals managed just one game last week and will now try packing seven games in a 10-day window.

The good news for Middleton is its one game was an impressive 10-0 win over Madison West last Friday in a contest stopped after six innings due to the mercy rule. The Cardinals improved to 9-7 overall and are 6-5 in the Big Eight Conference.

“It wasn't our best game at the plate, but I have been pleased with our approach against the teams below us in the standings,” Middleton manager Perry Hibner said. “We have been solid on the mound and in the field, run the bases hard and made enough happen at the plate.”

Madison West was winless in 2018, but has beaten Madison East and Madison La Follette this season. The Regents were no match for the Cardinals, though.

Thu
09
May
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Baseball Cards win two of three

Middleton’s baseball team proved last Saturday it could beat one of the top teams in the Big Eight Conference.

Now, the Cardinals will try besting one of the best teams in the state — twice.

Middleton edged visiting Madison West, 3-2, in eight innings last Saturday. The Regents entered the game second in the conference.

The Cardinals now face second-ranked and league-leading Janesville Craig twice this week — at home Tuesday and at Craig Thursday.

“We have the talent to beat Janesville Craig,” said Middleton manager Brent Jorgensen, whose team is 8-4 in the conference and 10-4 overall. “We just need to make the most out of our opportunities and play team baseball.”

The Cardinals certainly did that against West.

The teams were tied, 2-2, in the bottom of the eighth when Jacob Meinholz had a leadoff single. Dylan Carrington laid down a sacrifice bunt and pinch runner Matt Esser moved to second.

Thu
02
May
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Middleton golfers keep going low

One month from now, Middleton’s boys golf team hopes to be at University Ridge, chasing a WIAA Division 1 state championship.

If the Cardinals qualify for state — something that’s not a given considering they play in one of the state’s toughest sectionals — this much is clear: they’ll be able to play with anyone out there.

Middleton proved that again last Friday, finishing second at the 18-team Onalaska Invite. Homestead won the tournament with a 315, while Middleton was second at 317 and defending state champion Milwaukee Marquette was third at 323.

“We played with Marquette and Edgewood so it was a great opportunity to play with two good teams head to head and beat them,” Middleton coach Tom Cabalka said. “We've been beaten by Homestead twice now, both by two strokes. So we know we've got some work ahead of us in the coming weeks.”

Thu
02
May
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Tennis Cardinals enjoy huge week

Middleton’s boys’ tennis team has jumped to No. 6 in the state.

And by the looks of it, the Cardinals appear poised to continue their trend upward.

Middleton went 5-0 last week, highlighted by four straight wins at their own invitational. The Cardinals also rolled past Madison Memorial, 7-0, in a Big Eight Conference match last Tuesday.

“Our team performed at a high level, even in really difficult conditions with the wind on Friday,” Middleton coach Tony Mirasola said. “What continues to impress me with our guys is their preparation and level of focus no matter who the opponent is.”

Here’s a recap of Middleton’s five wins:

• Middleton 7, Madison Memorial 0 — Singles players Ryan Gold, Ian Connell, Jacob Mandelbrot and Akshay Kelshiker all won in straight sets.

The Cardinals’ three doubles all rolled, as well. Those duos included Sam Dettman and Brandon Bodak, Alton Yan and Gene Kim, and Jordan Cheng and Anders Clark.

Thu
02
May
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Baseball Cardinals heating up

Truth be told, Middleton’s chances of winning a second straight Big Eight Conference baseball title range somewhere between slim and none. Powerful Janesville Craig remains unbeaten in league play and has jumped to No. 3 in the state rankings.

But the Cardinals have put themselves back in the hunt for a top-three finish.

That’s because Middleton swept a pair of games from Beloit Memorial last week.

The Cardinals edged the visiting Purple Knights, 3-1, last Tuesday. Middleton then toppled host Beloit, 10-3, last Thursday.

The Cardinals improved to 8-5 overall and 6-4 in the conference, which is good for fourth place. Middleton is also just ½-game behind Sun Prairie (8-5, 6-3) for third place in the league.

Thu
02
May
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Soccer Cards survive brutal week

Weeks don't come much tougher than the one Middleton’s girls’ soccer team just finished.

Two games against Big Eight Conference powers. Three games against elite competition at the Tournament of Champions in Burlington, Iowa.

The Cardinals took on that hefty challenge and came out of it OK.

Middleton and Madison West played to a scoreless tie on April 23, then the Cardinals defeated Madison Memorial, 1-0, on April 25.

Middleton then went 1-2 during its weekend trip to Iowa.

Columbia Hickman (Mo.) downed the Cardinals, 5-2, last Friday. Then Bradley-Bourbannais (Ill.) toppled Middleton, 2-0, last Saturday.

But the Cardinals ended on a high note with a 2-0 win over Moline (Ill.) last Saturday.

Thu
02
May
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Softball Cardinals split a pair

Verona, Sun Prairie and Beloit Memorial’s girls softball team have surged to the head of the Big Eight Conference.

Middleton is hoping to lead the ‘Best of the Rest.’

The Cardinals took a step in that direction last week, and can take another one this week.

Middleton cruised past Madison East, 14-1, in a game stopped after six innings last Tuesday. The Cardinals then fell to Verona, 8-0, last Thursday and are now 8-7 overall and tied for fourth in the league at 5-5.

The good news for Middleton, though, is the schedule softens down the stretch. And the Cardinals have a chance to close the regular season with a bang.
“Well, we won't play Beloit Memorial or Sun Prairie again until late in the season, so the schedule allows us the opportunity to get some momentum going,” Middleton manager Perry Hibner said. “However, it's pretty apparent those teams, along with Verona, have again separated themselves from the rest of us.

Thu
02
May
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Boys track team shines at Middleton Invite

If the Middleton Relays taught Middleton’s boys track team anything, it’s that their distance teams can likely compete against anyone in the state. 

The Cardinals,  who feature many of the same runners from the state qualifying cross country team, swept the distance events in the diverse 11-team field at the Relays last Friday.

The distance runners made it look easy and helped Middleton finish with 107.33 points and a second place team finish at Breitenbach Stadium. Verona won the meet with 139 points, while Madison Memorial was third with 99 points

Middleton’s second team in the meet, Middleton White, finished ninth with 26 points.

“I was really pleased with the meet tonight, especially seeing other Big Eight teams load their relays and knowing where we stand against them,” said Middleton coach Joe Line. “For our guys competition-wise, it was good to have success but it was also good to get beat in events so we can see where we’re at moving forward.”

Thu
02
May
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Girls third at Middleton Invite

When asked what it was like going up against 10 other teams in the Middleton Relays last Friday, the Cardinals’ girls track and field team agreed on one thing: competing in a meet this size shows them where they stand and that definitely pushes them.

Middleton had a strong showing and finished in third place with 109 points. Madison Memorial won the event with 139 points, while Waunakee was second (115).

“Usually at meets when we go to duals we win by a lot, and that’s not to say we’re the best, but we are just at a higher level when competing,” said Middleton senior Hadley Braaten. “Tonight, we were a little bit closer and it was a little bit harder; it made us work really hard with all these other teams here.”

Middleton coach Cory Christnovich was pleased with the third-place finish at the Relays.

Thu
25
Apr
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Tennis Cardinals put on a show

Middleton’s boys tennis team went an impressive 4-0 at the Madison Memorial Spartan Invite last weekend.

The Cardinals defeated Kenosha Tremper, 7-0, and downed Sun Prairie, 5-2, last Friday. Middleton then rolled past Lake Geneva Badger, 6-1, and edged Green Bay Southwest, 4-3, last Saturday.

“The team as a whole really stepped up this weekend and started to show how good we can be when we play our best tennis,” Middleton coach Tony Mirasola said.

Middleton doubles teams went 11-1 in the four matches. And Cardinals’ top singles player Ryan Gold went 3-1 against elite competition.

“Our doubles teams really played with a lot of energy and were very focused over the course of the weekend,” Mirasola said. “I feel like the team really fed off the way they played and that helped to lead us to a lot of team success. Ryan also played his best tennis of the year this weekend, beating most likely three top-10 players over the course of four matches.”

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