THE BASICS

What: The 36th annual WIAA state boys soccer tournament.

When: Thursday through Saturday.

Where: Uihlein Soccer Park, 7101 W. Good Hope Road, Milwaukee.

Tickets/parking: Tickets are $8 per session and may be purchased at the door. Parking will be available for purchase at multiple nearby lots.

On the air/streaming: Thursday and Friday semifinal matches may be viewed online, on a subscription basis, on the WIAA.tv portal of the NFHS Network. Saturday championship matches will be aired on Fox Sports Wisconsin or FS Wisconsin Plus (check local cable/satellite listings).

On the Web: Visit https://www.wiaawi.org/Sports/BoysSoccer.aspx for schedules, live results, statistics and history.

SCHEDULE

Thursday semifinals

Division 2: No. 1-seeded Whitefish Bay (23-0) vs. No. 4 New Richmond (18-7-1), 11 a.m.; No. 3 Oregon (16-4-3) vs. No. 2 Waukesha West (18-2-1), 1:30 p.m.

Division 1: No. 1-seeded Milwaukee Marquette (18-3-1) vs. No. 4 Madison West (13-5-1), 4:30 p.m.; No. 3 Hartland Arrowhead (15-3-3) vs. No. 2 Eau Claire Memorial (20-2-2), 7 p.m.

Friday semifinals

Division 4: No. 1-seeded Racine Prairie (15-4-3) vs. No. 4 Chippewa Falls McDonell/Eau Claire Regis (11-4-3), 11 a.m.; No. 3 Sturgeon Bay (18-4-1) vs. No. 2 Kohler (26-0-1), 1:30 p.m.

Division 3 (1 p.m.): No. 1-seeded Delavan-Darien (24-1-3) vs. No. 4 Plymouth (17-3-2), 4:30 p.m.; No. 3 Amery (19-1-2) vs. No. 2 Mount Horeb (17-4-1), 7 p.m.

Saturday finals

Division 4: 11 a.m.; Division 1: 1:30 p.m.; Division 4: 4:30 p.m.; Division 3: 7 p.m.

THE LOWDOWN

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Alex Alvarado, 5-9, jr., GK, Madison West: Has helped West earn six consecutive shutouts with a 1.31 goals-against average on the season.

Shawn Azcueta, 5-10, sr., D, Whitefish Bay: A first-team all-state pick last year, Azcueta has four assists this year and led a Bay defense that has allowed nine goals all year, with 16 shutouts.

Nicholas Cheung, 5-10, sr., F, Milwaukee Marquette: A first-team all-state pick and Player of the Year nominee as a midfielder last year, Cheung has scored a team-high 21 goals and added four assists.

Matthew Comiskey, 5-11, sr., MF, Whitefish Bay: Comiskey leads the Whitefish Bay offense with 41 (of the team’s 126) goals and 26 assists for 108 points. Comiskey was a second-team all-state pick last year.

Madison Conduah, 6-0, sr., MF, Oregon: Leads the Panthers with 16 goals and six assists.

Jackson Dryden, 6-2, sr., F, Whitefish Bay: A second-team all-state forward last year, Dryden ranks second on the Blue Dukes with 28 goals and 25 assists.

Paolo Gratton, 5-10, so., MF, Madison West: Has scored nine goals and added 12 assists for 30 points. Only junior forward Ian Shi (12 goals) and senior forward Sam Loving (nine) have scored as many goals for West.

Elian Haddock, 6-4, sr., GK, Whitefish Bay: Last year’s first-team all-state goalkeeper, the hulking, Yale University-bound Haddock has led the Blue Dukes to the No. 2 national ranking in two state polls, allowing only eight goals (0.38 per match) with 105 saves and 15 shutouts. Born in Saudi Arabia, Haddock was introduced to soccer at age 3, when he lived in China, and lived in South Korea and Switzerland before settling in the United States at age 11.

Dominic Lambo, 5-7, sr., MF, Milwaukee Marquette: Earned honorable mention all-state last year and has four goals this season.

Jack Longville, 5-11, sr., F, Eau Claire Memorial: Has scored 37 of the Old Abes’ 77 goals, adding eight assists. Earned all-state honorable mention last year.

Jaden Neumann, 5-10, sr., F, Mount Horeb: Leads the Vikings with 23 goals and nine assists for 54 points.

Jamie Rodriguez, 6-2, sr., D, Delavan-Darien: Earned honorable mention all-state last year; has helped the Comets yield only 26 goals in 28 games this year, with 11 shutouts.

TEAMS TO WATCH

DIVISION 1

Madison West (13-5-1), unranked in the last state coaches’ poll, has ridden a hot goalkeeper (Alex Alvarado, who has six consecutive shutouts) and improved teamwork under first-year coach Drew Kornish to its first state berth since 2015 — when the Regents lost in a semifinal to Milwaukee Marquette.

No. 1-ranked Milwaukee Marquette (18-3-1) is seeking what would be a fourth straight state championship and 13th in the last 18 years since the state’s private schools were absorbed into the WIAA. However, coach Steve Lawrence (13th year) saw the Hilltoppers’ unbeaten streak against Wisconsin opponents end at 51 matches with a 3-0 loss to Whitefish Bay on Oct. 14. Marquette had built a run of 51-0-4 against state foes, dating to a 1-0 loss to Muskego on Oct. 24, 2013.

Second-ranked Eau Claire Memorial (13-5-1) earned its 10th state trip, but first since 2014, with a 1-0 sectional victory over No. 10 Green Bay Preble. Coach David Kite’s Old Abes lost a midseason game to D2 state qualifier Oregon.

Fifth-ranked Hartland Arrowhead (15-3-3) downed No. 3 Oshkosh West, 2-0, in a sectional final to earn its second state trip in three years under coach Jeff Staus. Luke Dubnicka has scored 27 of the Warhawks 67 goals, adding seven assists.

DIVISION 2

Unranked Oregon (16-4-3) takes a six-game winning streak to state. Coach Kevin May’s team has earned seven shutouts and allowed one goal in 10 other games, three of them 1-0 losses (to De Pere, Division 3 state qualifier Mount Horeb and Monona Grove). The Panthers beat Monona Grove and Sauk Prairie to earn its first state trip since making three straight visits from 2012 to 2014 (including the 2013 state title).

Waukesha West, ranked third after winning the Classic 8 Conference title, takes a five-match winning streak to state and has earned 12 shutouts and allowed 17 goals in its 21 games. Coach Marcel Feenstra’s team has gotten 20 goals and nine assists from senior midfielder Spencer Standarski and a 1.07 goals-against average from senior goalkeeper Carlos Arroyo.

State No. 1-ranked Whitefish Bay (23-0) has earned the No. 2 national ranking in multiple national polls, and coach Rob Dubinski’s Blue Dukes lineup features up to five players who are likely to play NCAA Division I soccer. Bay has shut out 16 of its 23 opponents and given up a total of nine goals while scoring 134.

New Richmond lost its semifinal game at state last year, its first state trip, but the unranked Tigers downed Holmen and Wausau East to earn a return visit. Coach Darian Blattner’s team has won 10 of its last 11 matches, losing 3-0 to Division 1 semifinalist Eau Claire Memorial in the regular-season finale. Sophomore forward Andrew Johnson (5-4, 118 pounds) leads the team with 43 goals (out of 107 by the team) and 14 assists.

DIVISION 3

Third-ranked Mount Horeb (17-4-1) has earned its fourth state straight trip and is chasing what would be its first state title since 2015. The Badger North Conference champs beat Evansville, 2-0, in the final of the McFarland sectional. Veteran Jaden Neumann has scored 23 goals, senior Cameron Eyre has 15 and senior Kyler Donovan 11. Junior Ben Leis has a 0.72 goals-against average with five of the team’s 12 shutouts.

The sixth-ranked Amery Warriors (19-1-2), champs of the Middle Border Conference under coach Flint Karis, earned their first state berth with a wins over Rice Lake and the Amherst co-op in sectional play. Amery takes a 13-match unbeaten string to state after an early 2-0 loss to Rice Lake.

Top-ranked Delavan-Darien (24-1-3), the defending state champion and 2014 champ, finished second to Elkhorn in the Southern Lakes Conference, thanks to a tie and a loss against Elkhorn. Coach Mike Marse’s Rockets beat Shorewood in a shootout and Waukesha Catholic Memorial in overtime to return to state. Senior forwards Zeus Huerta and Jason Cano have 50 and 48 goals, respectively, for a team that has averaged 6.25 goals per game. The defense has 11 shutouts.

Seventh-ranked Plymouth (17-3-2), champion of the East Central Conference, is back at state for the fourth time and the first since 2010, though all prior trips were in Division 2. Coach Rommy Herrera’s Panthers have gotten 18 goals from sophomore Clayton Lautenschaleger. Junior goalkeeper Gabe Thull leads a defense that has produced 15 shutouts in 22 games.

DIVISION 4

Third-ranked Racine Prairie (15-4-3) defeated second-ranked Racine St. Catherine’s 2-1 in a sectional final to earn its eighth state trip, but its first since 2014. Coach Corey Oakland’s Hawks are chasing what would be an eighth WIAA title. Senior forward Nolan Wolf has scored 41 of the Hawks’ 108 goals.

Unranked Chippewa Falls McDonell/Eau Claire Regis (11-4-3) beat Marshfield Columbus to earn its first state berth since a run of three trips from 2007 to 2009. Coach Joe Cash’s team has gotten 14 goals from senior forward Austin Erickson.

Fifth-ranked Kohler (26-0-1) had its record marred only by a 1-1 tie with Manitowoc midway through the season. Coach Rod Hogan’s Big East Conference champs took a 2-0 win over ninth-ranked Brookfield Academy in sectional play. Sophomore goalkeeper Collin Adams has 11 shutouts.

Sixth-ranked Sturgeon Bay (18-4-1) has won 12 of its last 13 matches, losing only to Division 1 Green Bay Preble during that run. Coach Todd Maas’ Clippers have gotten 37 goals from senior midfielder Jaden Stevenson, and senior goalkeeper Trent Maas leads a defense that has delivered 13 shutouts.

0
0
0
0
2

Wisconsin State Journal prep sports editor Art Kabelowsky has traversed the state to cover sports while working for daily papers in Fort Atkinson, Racine, La Crosse, Milwaukee and Baraboo.