Sports

Fri
11
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Memorial stuns Middleton

The Streak was over. Finally. Or so it seemed.

Middleton’s student body stormed the floor at Madison Memorial. The Cardinals’ boys basketball team celebrated. The coaching staff was giddy.

Then, in a flash, it all went poof.

Middleton led Madison Memorial, 60-59, as the clock expired Thursday night. But referees ruled that Spartans coach Steve Collins called timeout with 2 seconds left.

Memorial’s Jester Weah inbounded from three-quarters court and hit Shareef Smith racing down the right sideline. Smith took one dribble, pulled up from 22-feet and drained a three-pointer as the horn sounded.

Madison Memorial 62, Middleton 60.

“It’s unbelievable,” said Cardinals junior guard Derek Rongstad, who led all scorers with 18 points. “We thought it was done. I still can’t believe it.”

Wed
09
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Girls basketball team looks to heat up

There’s a lot of time before the Big Eight Conference girls basketball race will be decided.

But Middleton knows it’s probably out of mulligans. If the Cardinals hope to win a seventh straight league title, it’s time to get rolling.

“We definitely need to get on a roll,” senior guard Natalie Staples said. “We need to keep working hard and get a little more consistent.”

The Cardinals took a big step in that direction last Thursday.

Middleton used a 13-0 run early, never trailed again, and toppled visiting Sun Prairie, 48-39.

Middleton improved to 6-4 overall and is tied for third place in the Big Eight at 4-2. Sun Prairie is 5-4 overall and 4-3 in the conference.

Janesville Parker (9-1, 7-0) continues to lead the league.

Wed
09
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

La Follette tops Middleton

A little time off to work on his shot might have been just what Derek Rongstad needed.

The 6-foot-5 junior point guard made a triumphant return to the Middleton lineup last Friday night with a game-high 26 points. Unfortunately, Rongstad’s performance wasn’t enough as the Middleton boys basketball team dropped a hard-fought, 73-69, Big Eight Conference decision to Madison La Follette.

Rongstad was originally expected to be out at least four to six weeks after breaking a bone in his left hand in a game against Verona on Dec. 13. However, doctors told Rongstad there was little risk of re-injuring the hand if he returned early. Rongstad responded by making 7 of his 12 three-point attempts against the Lancers.

Since Rongstad injured his left hand, and not his shooting hand, he was still able to practice shooting one-handed while he was out.

Wed
09
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Boys basketball team tops Appleton East

Guile, resiliency, strength.

Middleton showed all of the above last Saturday afternoon during an impressive 45-34 win over Appleton East.

Less than 24 hours earlier, the Cardinals had dropped a disappointing game to visiting Madison La Follette. But Middleton rebounded in impressive fashion.

The Cardinals improved to 5-6 on the year and snapped a four-game losing streak.

“After a tough close loss to a quality La Follette team, to come back and beat a solid squad in Appleton East was very impressive,” Middleton coach Kevin Bavery said. “I'm really proud of how our guys responded, especially less than 24 hours later.”

Middleton, which made a school-record 13 three-point shots against La Follette, stayed red-hot and drained seven against East.

Wed
09
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Hockey Cards rediscover winning ways

As Middleton’s hockey team skidded last month, Cardinals co-coach Steve Libert felt chemistry and camaraderie were bigger issues than talent.

So Libert was giddy his team hit the road last weekend.

“Playing back to back games on the road may have helped build some trust amongst the players,” Libert said. “We have lacked the ability to trust each other to do their job, and as a result, we often have players trying to do too much.

“But you fail at your own responsibilities as soon as you try to do someone else's job. Everybody got to spend more time with each other on the bus and story time seemed to go well.”

That it did.

First, the Cardinals toppled Onalaska, 3-2, in overtime Friday. Middleton senior Jake Bunz got the game-winner 1:12 into the extra session.

The Cardinals then routed Beloit Memorial, 8-3, last Saturday. Bunz stayed red hot with the first four-goal night of his Middleton career.

Wed
09
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Gymnasts capture Mount Horeb Invite

Kari Steck sets the bar awfully high for Middleton’s girls gymnastics team.

So when the Cardinals exceeded Steck’s expectations last Saturday, you know good things happened.

Middleton went to the Mount Horeb Invite and put on a show. The Cardinals posted a 138.250 team score to easily outdistance runner-up Madison Edgewood (133.50) at the 13-team event.

Middleton junior Aryn Skibba captured the individual title with a remarkable performance. Skibba notched a 137.325 score to edge Madison Memorial’s Caroline Smith (36.925) for the all-around crown.

“The girls performed far beyond my expectations,” Steck said. “This was our first invitational of the year, and they really made a statement and set the bar for the conference.”

Skibba gave a memorable performance in winning the all-around title.

Wed
09
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Wrestlers win Baraboo Invite

Middleton’s wrestling team has been looking for a signature win all season.

Last Saturday, the Cardinals got exactly that.

Middleton went to the Baraboo Thunderbird Classic and won the seven-team tournament.

The Cardinals finished with 208.0 points and edged runner-up Baraboo (194.5). Tomah (181.0), Grafton (115.0) and Adams-Friendship (106.5) rounded out the top five.

Middleton had four first place finishers. Those came from Jake Cain at 138 pounds, Shay Haase (160), Taggart Haase (170) and Sean Benedict (285).

Cain notched four pins, won one match by forfeit and improved to 29-1 on the year. Cain’s toughest match came against Baraboo’s William Pierce, but he pinned the Thunderbirds wrestler in 5:27.

Shay Haase went 5-0 on the day, including two pins.

Wed
02
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Staples delivers ultimate feel good story

FRANKLIN — I’ll be the first to admit, I’m jaded.

Twenty-plus years in this business will do that to even the most pie-in-sky optimists.

For every great kid and terrific story, there’s another one — and maybe more — to muck things up.

But every now and again comes a story that restores your faith in, well, really everything that’s good about people and life.

In this case, that story bleeds into the sporting world, as well.

Meet Natalie Staples, a remarkably determined, strong-minded, and resolute member of Middleton’s girls basketball team. If ever there was a poster child for perseverance, it’s Staples.

By now many of you likely know Staples’ incredible story.

In Aug., 2010, Staples and a group of six friends went for an ATV ride on the family’s 16-acre property in Cross Plains. They hit a patch of gravel and the vehicle flipped.

Wed
02
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Middleton's girls second at Franklin Tournament

FRANKLIN — Sure, a title would have been sweet.

But for a Middleton’s girls basketball team searching for consistency, last weekend was a terrific success.

The Cardinals reached the championship game of the fifth annual Christine Rathke Memorial Tournament held at Franklin High School. There, Middleton fell to host Franklin, 68-57.

Still, reaching the title game at a power-packed tournament was a huge stepping stone for the Cardinals.

“We’re improving , but we have to get better defensively and be more secure with the ball,” said Middleton coach Jeff Kind, whose team was plagued by turnovers in the title game. “It’s good to win two of three, but still a lot to improve on.”

Wed
02
Jan
MTT News Desk's picture

Edgewood tops Middleton's boys

They were shorthanded, under the weather and sluggish most of the night.

Still, Middleton’s boys basketball team rallied from an 18-point deficit against Madison Edgewood last Friday.

Down the stretch, though, the Crusaders made more big plays and pulled out a hard fought, 50-49 non-conference win.

“We looked like we were sick,” Middleton coach Kevin Bavery said. “Guys were trying to run but looked like they were in quicksand.”

Middleton played without four of its top 10 players, including standout guard Derek Rongstad (hand) and starting forward Chris Little (flu). Still, the Cardinals battled back from a huge hole to make the final moments thrilling.

Kenji Passini, who led Middleton with 12 points, scored five straight points late to put the Cardinals ahead, 49-48. First, Passini drilled a three-pointer. Then Passini made two free throws with 28 seconds remaining to give Middleton the lead.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Sports