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From state to the NCAAs
PHS in Madison, UWP to host first playoff game Saturday
PHS football celebration
Platteville Hillmen football players pour onto the field at Watertown High School to celebrate their first state championship game berth since 1983 after the Hillmen defeated Manitowoc Roncalli 2215. The Hillmen will play Winneconne in the WIAA Division 4 championship game at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison Thursday at 7 p.m. one of four Southwest Wisconsin teams going to Madison Thursday. - photo by Photo by Matthew Apgar

In less than 24 hours’ time, Platteville made history on the football field.

The Platteville Hillmen clinched their first WIAA state football championship berth since 1983 with a 22–15 win over Manitowoc Roncalli at Watertown High School.

Then, on Saturday afternoon, UW–Platteville clinched its first NCAA Division III football tournament berth with a 17–16 win over UW–Oshkosh.

The Hillmen (9–4) will play Winneconne (8–5) in the Division 4 championship at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison Thursday at 7 p.m.

Tickets for the game are $8, with a day-long pass $30. Tickets will be available at the Platteville High School office until the start of classes Thursday. Tickets also will be available at the stadium.

The team will be leaving Platteville High School at 2:30 p.m., going by Platteville Middle School before heading to Madison.

A fan bus will be available Thursday for $10, including the game ticket. Middle school students can only ride on the bus with adults.

The game will be on WGLR (97.7 FM) and Fox Sports Wisconsin. The FSW broadcast will not be streamed live on the Internet.

Plans as of Monday were to have the team return to the Walmart parking lot around 11 p.m. and go to the high school for a celebration around 11:30 p.m.

Because of the game, the Platteville Youth Basketball chili supper originally scheduled for Thursday has been rescheduled to Tuesday, Nov. 26 from 5 to 8 p.m.

The Pioneers (9–1) will host Concordia University Wisconsin at Ralph E. Davis Pioneer Stadium Saturday at noon.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors 62 and older and $4 for UWP students and children to 17. Contact the UWP Athletic office, 342-1567, for more information.

Platteville’s company at state: Platteville football fans will have plenty of company at Madison’s Camp Randall Stadium as our beloved Hillmen are one of four teams from Southwest Wisconsin that will be playing for state championships on Thursday.

Undefeated Black Hawk (13–0) will begin the festivities Thursday morning against Glenwood City (12–1) in the Division 7 championship game.

Senior running back Tanner Sweeney rushed for 294 yards and four touchdowns to lead the Six Rivers Conference champion Warriors to a 60–33 Level 4 victory Friday night over Lake Country Lutheran at Middleton’s Breitenbach Stadium.

Sweeney broke a 71-yard run for a touchdown on Black Hawk’s first play and the Warriors never trailed. Sweeney also scored on runs of 61, 42 and 4 yards. Jayden Rufenacht added 177 yards and two TDs on 14 carries.

The defending state champion Hilltoppers defeated Pittsville 48–26 on Friday.

Darlington (12–1) will face undefeated Shiocton (13–0) in the Division 6 championship game in Thursday’s second title bout at 1 p.m.

The Redbirds knocked off mighty Saint Mary’s Springs, ending the Ledgers’ (12–1)  39-game winning streak with a 28–13 victory Saturday in a D6 semifinal at Middleton.

Darlington scored the first 21 points of the game and never looked back.

Senior Tanner Wiegel rushed for a game-high 154 yards, including a 61-yard touchdown, in the win.

Fullback Myles Leahy rushed for 101 yards, including a 34-yard TD to open the scoring midway though the first quarter. Junior Jason Singer totaled 78 yards on eight carries and scored a pair of TDs, one on a 48-yard run, the other on a 46-yard pass from Cole McDonald to make it 28–6 early in the second quarter.

This will be Darlington’s ninth appearance in the state championship, but its first since a runner-up finish in 1997.
Darlington’s only loss this season is a 28–15 setback to Platteville in the season opener on Aug. 23.

Shiocton is coming off a 50–0 victory over Hurley on Saturday.

SWC champion Lancaster (13–0) will be the third team from this corner of the state to take the field Thursday when the Arrows face fellow unbeaten Stanley–Boyd (13–0) at 4 p.m. for the Division 5 title.

The Arrows rallied from a 20–6 deficit Friday night behind 269 yards rushing and four TDs from junior quarterback Nate Tranel to score a decisive 52–26 victory over Kewaunee in a D5 semifinal at Brookfield Central.

Junior fullback Tyler Glass added 205 yards rushing and three touchdowns for Lancaster, which piled up a single-game school record 537 yards rushing.

The Arrows will be playing in their third straight title game — finishing second in both 2011 and 2012 — and 10th in school history, all since 1993. Lancaster is 6–3 in state title games.

Stanley–Boyd was a 28–21 victor over Amherst, the school that defeated Lancaster, 19–7, in last year’s D5 state title game.