Sports

Thu
27
Jun
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MHS golfers earn top honors

Tom Cabalka couldn't stop gushing.

Middleton’s boys golf coach was recently discussing how Kip Sullivan, Jacob Beckman and Carson Frisch were named first-team all-Big Eight Conference, and Tommy Kriewaldt received second-team honors.

The foursome was also recognized by the Wisconsin Golf Coaches Association. Sullivan was named second-team all-state, Beckman received third-team honors and both Kriewaldt and Frisch were named honorable-mention all-state.

And Cabalka simply couldn't find enough plaudits to throw in the direction of his four golfing standouts.

“I'm finding it hard to say enough good things about these guys,” Cabalka said. “They are all great young men, and such an enjoyable group to work with. 

Thu
27
Jun
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Baseball Cardinals named all-conference

Middleton’s baseball team had four players earn all-Big Eight Conference honors.

Senior pitcher Matt Ballweg and junior outfielder Ben Collier were named second-team all-conference. Senior outfielder Cooper Holewinski and junior infielder Adam Casali received honorable-mention all-conference honors.

In 42 innings pitched, Ballweg struck out 40 batters, walked 17 and had a 2.33 ERA. Ballweg allowed just 30 hits in conference games and had a WHIP (walks + hits/innings pitched) of 1.119.

“He was a tremendous pitcher for us who kept us in nearly every game he pitched,” Middleton manager Brent Jorgensen said of Ballweg. “Matt had a great pickoff move to complement his ability to locate all three of his pitches for strikes. His demeanor, pitching abilities, and work ethic were the three things that really set him apart this year.”

Thu
20
Jun
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Four MHS softball players named all-Big 8

Middleton’s girls’ softball team had four players earn all-Big Eight Conference honors.

Sophomore catcher Olivia Hebert and sophomore centerfielder CC Hiorns were named first-team all-league. Senior third baseman Ashley Bindl and senior pitcher Brynn Thayer were both named honorable-mention all-conference.

Hebert led the Cardinals in RBIs (34) and doubles (10). Hebert was also second among Middleton’s starters in batting average (.359), slugging percentage (.522) and steals (11), and was fourth in runs scored (18).

In 96 plate appearances, Hebert struck out just six times. She threw out three runners trying to steal and had a fielding percentage of .965 on 143 total chances.

Thu
20
Jun
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Soccer Cardinals earn all-Big 8 honors

Middleton’s girls’ soccer team enjoyed a terrific year in which the Cardinals went 10-4-4 and reached a WIAA Division 1 sectional final.

Not surprisingly, the Cardinals had several players earn all-Big Eight Conference honors.

Junior midfielder Tyler Wilson and senior defender Emily Raisleger were named first-team all-conference.

Senior forward McKenzie Zocher, sophomore forward Victoria Bunz, senior midfielder Danielle Martin and senior defender Caitlynn Owens were named second-team all-league.

And senior forward Hailey Kowalski, senior defender Lauren Hendricks and junior keeper Emelie Gehrke received honorable-mention all-conference honors.
Wilson led Middleton with 15 goals and added five assists. Wilson was also voted the Cardinals’ ‘Most Valuable Attacker’ by her teammates.

Tue
18
Jun
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Hibner steps down as MHS softball coach

Four weeks ago, Middleton’s girls softball team had its season end after a loss at Onalaska in the regional finals.

Cardinals manager Perry Hibner — as enthusiastic, passionate and detailed of a coach as you’ll find — immediately turned the page to what could be a big 2020 season. Unfortunately for Hibner, he won’t be along for the ride.

Hibner also serves as the Director of Communications for the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District. And on June 13, Hibner’s bosses asked him to step down as the girls’ softball coach to spend more time helping with several projects and personnel changes in the district.

Hibner, the Cardinals’ skipper the last four seasons, was certainly caught off guard.

Wed
12
Jun
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Connell, Cardinals shine at state tennis

MADISON — Ian Connell walked about 100 feet, or so, through the bowels of Nielsen Tennis Stadium late last Friday night.

When Connell got to the end of the hallway, his entire Middleton tennis team was waiting to shower the Cardinals’ freshman with love.

Hugs. High fives. Yelling. Screaming.

The group produced all of the above.

“That was just amazing,” Connell said. “Best thing I ever felt.”

And certainly deserved.

Connell took part in arguably the most grueling, exhausting, intense match seen at the WIAA Division 1 boys state team tennis tournament in several years. And when it ended after nearly three hours, Connell’s 6-2, 5-7, 7-6 (8) win over Arrowhead junior Cole Contardi lifted the Cardinals past the Warhwaks, 4-3, in a state quarterfinal match.

Wed
12
Jun
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Dream season dies for soccer Cards

WALES — Taylor Rough and Anna Mintz stood at midfield, hugging each other and refusing to let go.

Hailey Kowalski lifted her shirt over her face, almost to hide the tears.

And McKenzie Zocher — a gritty, gutty senior who’s torn both ACL’s during her standout prep career — battled through tears to deliver the final message of Middleton’s 2019 girls soccer season.

“We were a family, like as family as family can get,” Zocher said. “And like for me, this was my best season playing soccer ever. I’ve had multiple injuries and this is my first year not getting an injury. And I told this team after the game that this was the best season I’ve ever had.”

Unfortunately for the Cardinals, it came to an end last Saturday night.

Middleton allowed its second-most goals of the year, narrowly missed on several second half scoring opportunities, and fell to Waunakee, 3-2, in a WIAA Division 1 sectional final played at Kettle Moraine High School.

Sat
08
Jun
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Girls soccer team one step from state

Middleton girls soccer coach Mary Duffy said prior to Middleton’s WIAA Division 1 sectional semifinal against Sun Prairie last Thursday, her team was full of nervousness and excitement.

Second-seeded Middleton — seeking its first trip the sectional finals since 2015 — had to go through third-seeded Sun Prairie to get there. That’s no easy task as Sun Prairie features Alexis Baker, the Player of the Year in the Big Eight Conference.

If the nerves were present for Middleton they didn’t show.

Middleton used a strong defensive performance to stymie Sun Prairie, 2-0. Middleton got goals from Tyler Wilson and Kendall Roquet.

Middleton improved to 12-3-4 for the season, while Sun Prairie finished the year 9-5-4.

Middleton now faces top-seeded Waunakee on Saturday at 7 p.m. at Kettle Moraine. The winner will advance to the state tournament at Uihlein Park in Milwaukee on June 14 with seedings to be determined.   

Fri
07
Jun
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Middleton golfers storm to second at state

MADISON — Tommy Kriewaldt stood on the putting green at University Ridge with two young children by his side. Kriewaldt held the state runner-up trophy high, smiled from ear-to-ear and posed for pictures.

Carson Frisch took the trophy, was immediately surrounded by four female classmates, and produced one of the largest smiles of his young life.

Each member of Middleton’s sensational boys golf team followed suit, hoisting the trophy for a photo they’ll never forget. 

The American rock back Styx once produced the hit song, ‘The Best of Times.’ Tuesday evening was undoubtedly the best of the times for the Cardinals.

One year after a disappointing sixth place finish at the WIAA Division 1 state tournament, Middleton notched a second-place finish. That meant the Cardinals received a large runner-up trophy and a fire truck escort through Middleton.

Fri
07
Jun
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Tennis Cards shine at state

Motivation. Drive. Enthusiasm.

Ryan Gold, Middleton’s top singles player, and the Cardinals’ top doubles team of Brandon Bodak and Sam Dettman had all of these last Saturday — even though it would have been easy for all three to be listless.

The trio had all lost in the quarterfinals of the WIAA Division 1 boys state tournament last Friday night. Now, all three returned to Nielsen Tennis Stadium just 12 hours later knowing their hopes of a state championship had been dashed.

“It was very rough losing in the quarterfinals,” Bodak said. “But we weren’t going to let that stop us from making podium.”

None of the three did.

Gold notched a pair of straight set wins on Saturday and finished in fifth place in the singles division. Dettman and Bodak cruised through their first match, then won a three-set match to finish in fifth in doubles play.

The fantastic finish made it a memorable weekend for all of the Cardinals.

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