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Sports Wrapups: Dec. 17

Dec. 17, 2012

Germantown wrestling

Hunter Higginbotham won the 285-pound weight class to remain unbeaten, as the Warhawks finished ninth of 17 teams in the E.H. Stech Invitational at West Allis Central last weekend.

"Germantown put up a strong outing," coach Casey Gabrielson said. "The Stech Tournament is an elite tournament in southern Wisconsin and always brings some of the best teams in the area. When Hartford finishes 14th out of 18 teams, you know the competition is fierce."

Higginbotham was one of four Warhawks to place in the event, which was a dramatic improvement over the one place-winner Germantown had last year when it was 12th in this event.

Germantown scored 89 points for its spot, as Franklin won with 166.

Higginbotham (17-0), who will drop down to the 220-pound weight class after the holidays with occasional forays for tough competition in the 285-pound class, dominated the 285-pound class at the Stech despite weighing only 223 pounds.

He pinned Hartford (34 seconds), Racine Park (4:36), and Menasha (4:34) opponents and gave Janesville Craig's Dakota Pearson his first loss of the season with a 9-1 major decision in the final.

"(He) came in unbeaten and left unbeaten," Gabrielson said. "He stands strong and among the best in the state. … We are going to have to challenge him with good matches. Even if that means bumping him up to heavyweight to get the challenge."

Other place-winners for the Warhawks included Tyler Palzkill fifth at 160 (3-2 for the tourney, 9-8 overall); Steve Asmondy third at 195 (4-1, 13-4); and Joe Zizzo fourth at 220 (4-2, 12-6).

"It was our seniors that came through big over the course of the grueling two-day tournament," Gabrielson said. "Our younger guys saw what the next level is and the difference muscle makes. They really need to make it a goal to get bigger and hit the weights."

Gabrielson also praised the efforts of Mike Huhn at 138 (1-2), Tyler Baran at 170 (2-2, 9-7); and Hunter Valenta at 182 (1-2, 5-3). Germantown is off until a Jan. 3 dual at home against Milwaukee Lutheran.

Menomonee Falls wrestling

The Indians are on the "whatever doesn't kill you, makes you stronger" schedule this season, as they learned some good lessons Saturday when they took 11th of 25 in the powerhouse Marty Loy Invitational in Fond du Lac.

"We're trying to get out and around," Indians coach Jim McMahon said of his veteran team's forays into the big time. "We hope it'll bring us some benefits while not letting us get too beat up in the process. We have our fingers crossed in that regard."

The Indians, who will be off this week, continue that slate on Dec. 28-29, when they take part in the Northern Exposure Duals at Merrill. They'll get seven duals over two days including potentially seeing Greater Metro rivals West Allis Central and Brookfield East in the process.

Falls crushed Brookfield Central in a league dual last week, too.

In the Loy event, the Indians scored 99 points, as state power Wausau West won with 284.5 points and Hudson was second with 191.

Bill Holz at 126 pounds (15-2 overall) had the best finish for Falls, taking second. He recorded three good wins over Sauk Prairie, Westfield and Lodi opponents before getting pinned by West's returning 120-pound state champion Colin Baine (16-0).

"The kid was just that good," McMahon said of Baine.

Falls ended the meet on a good moment, as Ayoola Olapo earned third at 182 pounds with a 4-2 overtime decision over fifth-ranked Brock Allen of DeForest. Olapo, who was 3-1 on the day and 16-1 overall, lost to Hudson's eventual champion Derek Schindler in the semifinals. The win over Allen was the final match of the day for the team.

Other good efforts for Falls included Aaron Daly's fifth at 106 (4-1, 14-4); Jerrott Holz's fifth at 120 (4-1, 15-3); Ben Bonesho's eighth at 113 (5-4 overall); and Casey Crangle's seventh at 132 (4-2, 10-8).

"It was an outstanding tourney and we wanted our kids to get some really good matches," McMahon said. "Some of their records are not what they wanted because of that, but our level of competition is higher."

The Al McGuire Classic

The Warhawks boys basketball team has made a fine living down at the Al McGuire Center on the Marquette University campus over the last several years in WIAA competition and they wanted to extend the hospitality to other schools, as they host the Al McGuire Classic on Saturday.

At 10:30 a.m., Milwaukee Riverside takes on Milwaukee King in a high-powered girls game, while Germantown's girls follow that when they challenge fellow Warhawks Hartland Arrowhead at 12:15 p.m.

Four boys games follow, including Brookfield Central and Arrowhead at 2 p.m., Milwaukee Bradley Tech and Waukesha West at 4:45 p.m., and Menomonee Falls and Whitefish Bay at 6:30 p.m.

Number one-ranked and defending state champion Germantown (7-0) then takes on state Division 2 power East Troy (5-0) at 8:30 p.m. The Trojans' 6-9 twins Brett and Alex Prahl form a considerable challenge to the Warhawks, who have won 35 games in a row.

Menomonee Falls girls basketball

The Indians prepped for their showdowns with DSHA and Germantown this past weekend (see separate stories) by overpowering Wauwatosa East, 56-41, in a Greater Metro Conference game on Dec. 11.

Falls (1-2 in league and 3-3 overall) led only 19-15 at the half, but then outscored the Red Raiders, 37-26 in the second half.

A total of 10 Indians scored led by Erin Crownover with 14 points, Mikayla Robertson with 10, and Erin Otzelberger with eight.

Katie Salmon led East with eight.

The Indians lost to their border rival Germantown on Saturday (see separate story).

Falls took on unbeaten border rival Sussex Hamilton on Tuesday in another critical GMC tilt and visit powerful nonconference opponent Milwaukee Riverside at 6:30 p.m. Thursday It will be Falls' final preholiday contest.

Germantown boys basketball

The top-ranked Warhawks (5-0 in North Shore and 7-0 overall) crashed through the century barrier for the second time this season when they buried North Shore rival Cedarburg 105-27 on Dec. 11 in their first road tilt of the season.

They then stayed unbeaten with another North Shore rout Friday, 75-39 over Milwaukee Lutheran.

"Our defense was incredible this week," Warhawks coach Steve Showalter said. "Much better than it was earlier in the season. We also pressed (for half the games) and combined with our halfcourt work, it was sort of a 'Pick your poison' sort of situation."

Germantown, which also defeated border rival Menomonee Falls on Saturday (see separate story), had 14 players score in the contest as the score was 34-7 at the quarter and 66-10 at the half.

All-state center Luke Fischer led the way with 24 points, while Jake Showalter had 15, Evan Wesenberg 13, and LaMonte Bearden and Dearionte Hudson 12 apiece.

Against Lutheran, the first half defense was again impressive, as Germantown broke out to a 26-2 lead at the quarter and a 40-10 advantage at the break. This time, 10 players scored led by Fischer's 19 and Wesenberg's 16, while Jon Averkamp had 10 and Showalter eight.

"We're just very deep right now," coach Showalter said. "One to 15, there isn't a huge drop-off."

Germantown is at Port Washington onThursday night, and then take on state-ranked Division 2 power East Troy in an 8:30 p.m. Saturday tilt at the Al McGuire Center.

It will be the final preholiday game for the Warhawks.

Germantown girls basketball

The Warhawks had a 55-49 lead going into the fourth quarter against visiting Cedarburg in a North Shore Conference tilt on Dec. 11, but could not hold it as the Bulldogs outscored Germantown, 20-7, in the fourth quarter en route to a 69-62 win.

Germantown then bounced back with an impressive 85-39 rout of Milwaukee Lutheran on Friday.

"We let one slip away the other day (against Cedarburg)," coach Matt Stuve said, "but yesterday (against Lutheran), our energy level was really good. We were running the floor and attacking and our defense was at a level that I liked.

"We're still a work in progress, but the halfcourt stuff (defensively) is at a level that we like to see."

Germantown (2-2 in North Shore and 5-3 overall), which beat rival Menomonee Falls on Saturday (see separate story), plays Arrowhead at 12:15 p.m. Saturday at the Al McGuire Center in its final preholiday game of the season.

Against Cedarburg, Germantown was up 34-33 at the half but could not keep the Bulldogs off the line, as they hit 23 of 39 free throws on the night. The Bulldogs' 5-10 senior post Tori Riechers knocked down 12 of 18 charity tosses for Cedarburg en route to 34 points.

Germantown was only two of six from the line in comparison. Taylor Higginbotham had 11 points for the Warhawks while Courtney Mehring had nine.

Against Lutheran, the Warhawks went up 23-13 at the quarter and then exploded with a 34-8 run in the second quarter to put the game away. Megan Johnston had 16 of her 17 points in the first half including three 3-pointers.

All told, Germantown hit an impressive 11 3-pointers in the game including two each by Taylor Higginbotham (eight points), Lauren Grotjahn (10), and Courtney Mehring (eight). Erika Berry was praised for her eight points and five steals while Bridget Kelly also had 10 points.

A total of 13 players scored for Germantown.

Menomonee Falls boys basketball

Wauwatosa East outscored the Indians, 27-16, in the fourth quarter to erase a three-point deficit and earn a 54-46 victory over Falls on Dec. 11.

The Indians (0-3 in GMC play and 0-6 overall), also fell to another GMC rival Marquette, 67-43, on Friday and to border rival Germantown on Saturday (see separate story). They challenged border rival Hamilton on Tuesday and then will close out their preholiday slate with a nonconference game against Whitefish Bay at the Al McGuire Center in Milwaukee at 6:30 p.m. Saturday.

Against Tosa East, Falls was up 19-17 at the half and 30-28 going into the fourth, but the Red Raiders had a big advantage at the foul line (20 of 26 as opposed to just four of six for Falls). Ben Carpenter hit 10 of 11 free throws en route to 21 points to lead East.

Meanwhile, Zach Murray and Jason Precia had nine apiece for Falls while Daniel Dahlke had eight.

Against Marquette, the Indians trailed 24-23 at the half, but then the Hilltoppers outscored them 19-6 in the third quarter to take control. Falls hurt itself by hitting only 10 of 22 free throws. Brandon Ramey had 12 points, including eight of 12 free throws, to lead Falls while Dahlke had seven.

Menomonee Falls/Germantown/ Hamilton boys swim

The Indians got firsts from Matt Ciolkosz in the 200 individual medley (2:08.74) and John Seiler in the 100 butterfly (54.69) as well as from the 400 free relay team (3:35.61) as they dropped a Greater Metro/Classic 8 Conference dual meet to Arrowhead on Dec. 13.

The local co-op, which also took on Berlin on Saturday, travels to the Metro Swim Officials Invite on Dec. 27 at Homestead.

Other good efforts against Arrowhead included a seconds from Seiler in the 50 free (22.63), Brad Kruppe in the 100 free (53.85), Cal Weber in the 500 free (5:41.23) and Ciolkosz in the 100 breast stroke (1:07.69).

- Steven L. Tietz

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