Basketball Champions Crowned at 106th WIAA State Basketball Tournament

MADISON, Wis. –  Champions were crowned in five divisions of the State Boys State Tournament Saturday at the Kohl Center.

Top-seeded Neenah (29-1) won the Division 1 championship with a 64-52 victory over third-seeded Brookfield Central (24-6).

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The Rockets built a 14-point lead in the first half, fueled by a 12-0 run to give the Rockets a 28-14 lead with 4:20 remaining in the half. The Lancers cut their deficit to five at 38-33 at the 12:48 mark of the second half, but a 12-2 run expanded the Rockets’ lead to 16 at 51-37 with 3:57 remaining. Neenah led by as many as 19 point late in the game.

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Four Rockets scored in double figures, led by Chevalier Emery Jr. with 19 points. Carter Thomas tossed in 15, JJ Paider scored 14 and Brady Corso contributed with 10. Paider hauled in a game-high 18 rebounds. His tournament total of 32 rebounds set a Division 1 record for a two-game tournament. Emery also pitched in with a game-high five assists.

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Andrew Rohde was the only Lancer to score in double figures with a game-high 34 points. He also compiled a team-high eight rebounds with two assists. His tournament point total set a two-game Division 1 record with 55.

WIAA Boys Basketball Regional Semifinal Scoreboard

The Rockets win their fourth State championship, and its their first since 1978. Neenah has appeared in a WIAA-membership leading 28 State Tournaments. Brookfield Central finishes runner-up in its 12th experience at State.

Top-seeded Pewaukee (27-3) won its second consecutive Division 2 championship with a 67-48 win over La Crosse Central (28-2) in the title game.

The Pirates erased a one-point deficit with 2:48 seconds remaining in the first half on an 11-0 run to give them a 30-20 lead. The Riverhawks cut their deficit to five at 30-25 by halftime. They trailed by only three points early in the second half before the Pirates took control of the game with a 16-3 run to inflate their lead to 46-30 at the 10-minute mark.

Pewaukee shot at a torrid pace, connecting on 60 percent of its field goals, including 54 percent from beyond the three-point arc. The brother combo of Ashton and Nick Jankowski as well as Milan Momcilovic led the Pirates in scoring with 19 points apiece. Momcilovic and Josh Terrian led the team on the boards with seven rebounds each, and Terrian distributed a game-high five assists.

La Crosse Central was led by Devon Fielding with 17 points. Nic Williams also recorded double-digits in scoring with 13. Noah Compan grabbed a game-high eight rebounds for the Riverhawks.

Pewaukee won its second title in its fourth tournament appearance. La Crosse Central finishes runner-up in its 19th State experience.

Last season’s runner-up and second-seeded Lake Country Lutheran (28-2) defeated top-seeded West Salem (27-2) 67-56 to win the Division 3 State championship.

The Lightning broke a 31-31 halftime tie by outscoring the Panthers 16-2 in the first eight minutes of the second half. West Salem was unable to get any closer than seven points the rest of the game. LCL was especially affective in the paint, outscoring the Panthers 34-16.

Ben Lubbers led the Lightning in scoring with 22 points. Noah Howard tossed in 16 points, and Luke Haertle chipped in with 14. Haertle notched a double-double with a team-high 11 rebounds. He narrowly missed a triple-double by distributing nine assists.

The Panthers were paced in scoring by Peter Lattos with a game-high 23 points. Tamarrein Henderson was the only other player to score in double figures with 14 points. Brett McConkey contributed a game-high 13 rebounds.

Lake Country Lutheran won its first State in its second appearance in the tournament. West Salem finishes runner-up in its first-ever State experience.

Second-seeded Roncalli (26-3) captured the Division 4 championship with a 55-45 win over top-seeded Milwaukee Academy of Science (23-6) in the final.

The stifling Jets’ defensive held the Novas to 24 percent shooting in the game. Roncalli scored the first eight points of the second half to build a double-digit at 34-22. MAS narrowed the deficit to eight points at 47-39, but could not get any closer to even the rest of the game.

Four players scored in double figures for the Jets, including a game-high 17 by Luke Pautz. Reece Stangel scored 11 points and Ryan Fischer and Brayden Yanda each chipped in with 10 apiece. Pautz also grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds and handed out a game-high four assists.

Davion Hannah and Agape Keys Jr. each had 12 points to lead the Novas in scoring. Tayshawn Bridges added 11 points. He also pulled down 11 rebounds and blocked two shots. Hannah created a game-high five steals on the defensive end.

Roncalli wins the program’s second championship in its ninth State Tournament appearance. Milwaukee School of Science finishes runner-up in its first State experience.

Top-seeded Randolph (28-2) won its 11th boys basketball championship, the most of any WIAA school, with a 65-51 victory over Bangor (25-5) in the Division 5 title game.

The Rockets led 30-25 halftime advantage before a 13-0 scoring run early in the second half expanded the lead to 20 points early in the second half. The closest the Cardinals could get the remainder of the game was the final margin.

Sam Grieger, who came off a 41-point performance to set a Division 5 scoring record in the semifinals Friday, and Travis Alvin both scored a game-high 21 points for the Rockets. Ben Nieman and Karter Meredith also scored in double figures with 11 and 10 points, respectively. Alvin and Nieman hauled in a game-high seven rebounds, and Grieger dished out a game-high six assists. Randolph shot a blistering 62 percent from the floor in the game.

Bangor was led in scoring by Gunner Ellenburg with 14 points. Dustin McDonald and Will Reader added 13 and 10 points, respectively. Ellenburg also paced the team with four rebounds and three assists.

Randolph’s 11th title comes in the school’s 16th tournament appearance, and Bangor finishes runner-up in its fourth State experience.

Complete Results & Boxscores

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David Keech
Author: David Keech

David Keech is a math teacher in Wisconsin Rapids and public address announcer for Abbotsord High School. He officiates basketball, baseball, and softball in central Wisconsin. He has reported on amateur sports since 2011, known as 'KeechDaVoice.' David can be reached at [email protected]