State Team Wrestling Tournament Preview

~ From the WIAA ~

THE TOURNAMENT:  The 30th Annual Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association State Team Wrestling Tournament will take place Saturday, Feb. 20. The tournament will held at three different sites. The Division 1 tournament will be held at Kaukauna High School. The Division 2 tournament is scheduled at Adams-Friendship High School with the Division 3 tournament at Wausau West High School. Ticket prices for the tourney are $16 for for the entire day.

TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE AND PAIRINGS:  The single elimination tournament features eight teams in Division 1 and four each in Divisions 2 and 3. Teams qualified this year in Division 1 by finishing in the top two at one of the four sectionals. In Divisions 2 and 3, the champions of each sectional qualified. Team scores were compiled by point values assigned to the top six individual placings. Here are the pairings and schedule for the divisions:

Division 1 at Kaukauna H.S.

Quarterfinals – 11 a.m.
Match-1:  #1 Kaukauna (10-0) vs. #8 Brookfield East (3-3)
Match-2:  #4 Waunakee (4-1) vs. #5 Marshfield (9-2)
Match-3:  #3 Holmen (11-0) vs. #6 Slinger (12-1)
Match-4:  #2 Stoughton (4-1) vs. #7 Waterford (7-1)

Semifinals – approximately 1 p.m.
Match-5:  Match-1 Winner vs. Match-2 Winner
Match-6:  Match-3 Winner vs. Match-4 Winner

Final – approximately 3 p.m.
Division 1 Championship Match

Division 2 at Adams-Friendship H.S.

Semifinals – 10:30 a.m.
Match-1:  #1 Amery (12-0) vs. #4 Kiel (5-2)
Match-2:  #2 Prairie du Chien (9-3) vs. #3 Winneconne (9-3)

Final – approximately 20 minutes following semifinals
Division 2 Championship Match

Division 3 at Wausau West H.S.

Semifinals – 10:30 a.m.
Match-1:  #1 Coleman (8-1) vs. #4 Cadott (10-1)
Match-2:  #2 Mineral Point (6-0) vs. #3 Random Lake (11-2)

Final – approximately 1 p.m.
Division 3 Championship Match

TOURNAMENT LIVE STREAMS:  The quarterfinals, semifinals and finals of the WIAA State Team Wrestling Tournament will be streamed live on the WIAA.TV portal of the NFHS Network on a consumer subscription basis. To purchase a subscription to the live programming for only $10.99 per month, log-on to www.wiaa.tv or www.nfhsnetwork.com and click on the subscribe button in the header of the page. Archived streams of the events will be available on demand on the NFHS Network 72 hours after the tournament.

TEAM TOURNAMENT OVERVIEW:  The first WIAA State Wrestling Tournament was held in 1940. Until 1992, team champions were determined by a point system based on individuals’ placing in what is currently the individual championships. For the first time in 1992, a team champion was determined by a separate tournament series involving dual matches. UW-Stevens Point hosted the first two championships, and West Allis Central hosted the meet from 1994-2005. The tournament has been held at the UW Field House from 2006-2020. There were 334 programs entering the tournament series, including 128 in Division 1, 103 in Division 2 and 103 in Division 3.

LAST YEAR:  Stoughton won the Division 1 team title for the third straight season, retaining the title with a 32-30 victory over Mukwonago in the championship match. Wrightstown won the Division 2 championship by defeating Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau/Melrose-Mindoro 38-19 in the title bout. Coleman defeated 2019 champion Fennimore 27-26 via tie-breaker to capture the Division 3 gold trophy.

ABOUT THE DIVISION 1 FIELD:  Kaukauna was issued the top seed in the bracket. The Galloping Ghosts qualify for the 12th time in the last 14 seasons and for the 19th time overall. They had a string of five straight appearances from 1999-2003 and have now surpassed that streak with their current run of nine consecutive appearances. They have won a total of four State championships, all coming in a row from 2014-17. The Galloping Ghosts have also finished runner-up four times, including 2000, 2003, 2008 and 2013. They qualified for State this year with a first-place finish at the Hartford Sectional. Three-time reigning champion Stoughton is the second seed. The Vikings are making their eighth straight appearance and their 15th overall. They have won 10 State team titles overall, including three since the advent of the team tournament format. Prior to the team tournament, the Vikings won seven State championships (1968, 1972, 1975-77, 1987-88). In addition, they have finished runner-up 10 times. This season, they continue their quest for a fourth consecutive title after finishing first in the sectional held at Mukwonago. Third-seeded Holmen is making its fifth straight appearance in the tournament field. The Vikings advance to the State for the 11th time overall. Their most notable achievement was a runner-up finish in 2018.  Holmen qualifies this year after finishing runner-up at the Wausau East Sectional. Waunakee is the fourth seed after placing second at the Mukwonago Sectional. The Warriors will be making their debut in the State Team Tournament. Fifth-seeded Marshfield qualifies for the State Team Tournament for the fifth time overall and for the third time in the last four seasons. The Tigers advanced to the semifinals in 2002, 2003 and again in  2019, which represents their furthest advance in the tournament. They are the champions of the Wausau East Sectional. Sixth-seeded Slinger is making its fourth consecutive appearance in the team tournament, which also accounts for its overall total. The Owls are looking to advance past the quarterfinals for the first time. They finished second in the Hartford sectional to qualify this season. Waterford is the seventh seed, advancing to State for the third time. The Wolverines’ first appearance, which came 24 years ago, resulted in a runner-up finish in Division 2. In their only other team tournament appearance in 2017, they fell in the quarterfinals. They were champions of the Brookfield East Sectional.  Brookfield East returns after making the program’s first-ever appearance at State last season, which resulted in a loss in the quarterfinals. The Spartans were issued the eighth seed for the second straight season. They earned another berth in the tourney field with a second-place finish in the sectional they hosted.

ABOUT THE DIVISION 2 FIELD:  Top-seeded  Amery will make its first appearance in the State Team Tournament. The Warriors earned their berth as champions of the Neillsville Sectional. Prairie du Chien was issued the second seed this year after the Blackhawks qualified for the first time in program history last season, which resulted in a loss in the semifinals. They are the champions of the Richland Center Sectional. Third-seeded Winneconne is also making its first appearance in the team tournament. The Wolves earned the berth with a first-place standing at the Seymour Sectional.  Fourth-seeded Kiel returns to the team tournament for the first time in 20 years as the #4 seed. The Raiders first appearance resulted in a loss in the Division 2 semifinals in 2001. They advance this year by earning the title of the sectional hosted at Kiel.

ABOUT THE DIVISION 3 FIELD:  Defending champion Coleman has been issued the #1 seed. The Cougars advance to State for the 15th time and for the second season in a row. They have won a total of 11 team championships. With the current dual format, they won the title in 2000, three in a row from 2010-12, in 2014, and again last year. They also claimed crowns before the dual format in 1960, 1962, 1963, 1964 and 1966 when there was only one division. In addition, they finished runner-up in 1959, 1961, 1981, 1983, 1996, 2008, 2013 and 2015. The Cougars are the champions of the Valders Sectional title to earn another State berth.  Second-seeded Mineral Point returns to the field for the first time since a string of five straight appearances ended in 2011. This will be the Pointers’ 11th team tournament overall. They have won 11 State championships overall, including five since the advent of the dual meet format. The Pointers won two straight Division 3 crowns from 2002-03 and three consecutive from 2007-09. They also claimed Class C crowns before the dual format in 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1985 and 1986. They have also finished runner-up four times, including 1966, 1976, 2010 and 2011. This season, they are the champions of the sectional they hosted.  Third-seeded Random Lake returns to the State Team Tournament for the 10th straight season and for the 12th time overall. The Rams’ most notable experience in the tourney was a runner-up finish in 2009. They earned their berth with their finish atop the Dodgeland Sectional standings. Fourth-seeded Cadott is making its sixth appearance in the team tournament and its first since 2007 when they tied for the Division 3 championship. The Hornets also won the championship in 2001 and finished runner-up in 2005. They continue their quest for a third title after winning the St. Croix Falls Sectional.

NEED LIVE RESULTS?:  Access results through the WIAA website by navigating to the wrestling homepage and selecting the Tournament Information option in the right column or by accessing the Trackwrestling.com website.

STATE SOUVENIR PROGRAMS ONLINE:  The souvenir programs for the 2021 winter State culminating events are available online and available to download and print at no cost. The State Team Wrestling Tournament program with qualifiers, history and schedule information can be accessed at:  https://www.wiaawi.org/Portals/0/PDF/Publications/Programs/2021teamwrestling.pdf.

ORDER STATE MEET APPAREL ONLINE:  WIAA licensed apparel is available online for the 2021 State Team Wrestling Tournament. Please access the store at: https://wiaateamwrest21.itemorder.com. Online purchases will be shipped after the online store closes on Wednesday, Feb. 24.

FOLLOW STATE MEET ON SOCIAL MEDIA:  Receive updates of the State Team Wrestling Tournament on the WIAA State Tournament Twitter account @wiaawistate with the hashtag #wiaawr. Also like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram at wiaawi.

We welcome your stories! Contact us at [email protected]!

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]