Eau Claire (WQOW) — The dust has settled for Sectional Baseball, and after Tuesday’s action, four area teams have advanced to the 2018 WIAA State Tournament.
In Division 1, Eau Claire North will make it’s third straight appearance at Fox Cities Stadium. The Huskies fell behind 1-0 in the first inning of the Sectional Final against Stevens Point, but they stayed focused and persevered, rallying for a 5-2 win, thanks in large part to their preparation.
"A lot of different things can happen on Sectional Tuesday," says head coach Bob Johnson, "I believe they were prepared for a lot of those opportunities. It was nice of course to answer that one with one ourselves, and that helps take a little bit of that pressure off as well."
"There really wasn’t any panic because we’ve been able to get the bats rolling all year long," explains junior outfielder Sam Stange, "Knowing that we had seven innings to get back into it. After that we never really looked back."
North will kick off the Division 1 State Tournament with their quarterfinal matchup against Waunakee at 8 A.M. next Tuesday.
In Division 3, Webster edged Elk Mound to secure their berth in the State Tournament. The Tigers made it to State last year in Division 4, but bowed out in the semifinals.
Head coach Jarrod Washburn thinks that experience will help this year, "We’re older now. We only lost one guy from last year’s team, so our whole team pretty much was there last year. We’re older now and hopefully we’ve learned something from that and we’re able to adjust."
Webster will take on Kenosha St. Joseph in the Division 3 State semifinals next Wednesday afternoon, around 3:30 P.M.
In Division 2, Ellsworth returns to the State Tournament for the first time since 2013. The Panthers will face Waupun in the semifinals Wednesday evening. In Division 4 Thorp is heading to Fox Cities Stadium for the first time in school history. The Cardinals will take on Johnson Creek Wednesday morning.