GAME OF THE WEEK (Dec. 29–Jan. 4)
PREP WRESTLING: 35th Annual Bi-State Classic (at La Crosse Civic Center), Thursday–Friday, Dec. 29–30.
The 2016 Bi-State Wrestling Classic is already underway with opening round matches beginning Thursday morning, with early round action continuing throughout the day. Sixty teams from Wisconsin and Minnesota are competing in this year’s two-day event that is this week’s McDonald’s SWnews4U.com Game of the Week.
The Bi-State Classic, now in its 35th year, is one of the premier midseason wrestling events in the state of Wisconsin, drawing more than 50 teams from the neighboring states for more than three decades. Match results can be streamed live through trackwrestling.com.
Wrestlebacks will begin Thursday night at 6:30 p.m., followed by quarterfinal matches. Session 3 begins Friday morning at 9:30 a.m. with wrestlebacks and semifinals running simultaneously. Door opened tto the public for Friday’s night’s championship Session 4 at 4:30 p.m. The Parade of Champions will begin at 5:20 p.m., followed by first-place matches for each weight class being wrestled on the stage and third and fifth-place matches being held on the floor.
The format of the tournament is 64-man brackets for each weight class, with wrestlers in all three divisions competing against each other. Team scoring will be separated by divisions. Awards will be presented to the top 12 place winners in each weight class. Team awards will be presented for all three divisions following the conclusion of the 285-pound championship.
Area teams competing at this year’s Bi-State Classic include, in Division 2: Belmont/Platteville, Cuba City/Benton/Southwestern, Dodgeville, Richland Center, Prairie du Chien/Wauzeka–Steuben, Richland Center and River Valley; and in Division 3: Boscobel, Hillsboro, Iowa–Grant/Highland, Ithaca/Weston, Kickapoo/La Farge, Lancaster, North Crawford/Seneca and Riverdale.
OTHER AREA GAMES OF NOTE:
BOYS BASKETBALL: Appleton Xavier (7–0, ranked #3 in Division 3) vs. Prairie du Chien (6–2) at La Crosse Aquinas Classic, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2:30 p.m.
The defending Southwest Wisconsin Conference champion Blackhawks will tangle with undefeated Appleton Xavier (7–0) in the championship of the La Crosse Aquinas Classic Thursday afternoon. Prairie du Chien defeated Black River Falls 73–46 in the opening round on Wednesday night.
BOYS BASKETBALL: River Ridge Tournament (at Patch Grove), Friday, Dec. 29, 1 p.m.
River Ridge will host a one-day, four-team tournament on Friday afternoon. The host Timberwolves (2–5) will face Iowa–Grant (3–2) at 1 p.m. in the first semifinal, followed by Albany (4–4) and Weston (0–8) at 2:30 p.m. The opening round losers will meet in the consolation game at 4:30 p.m., followed by the championship game.
GIRLS BASKETBALL: Darlington (6–4) at Shullsburg (5–2, #3 in Div. 5), Monday, Jan. 2, 7:30 p.m.
The third-ranked Miners suffered a 57–38 loss to host La Crosse Aquinas in the championship game of the Aquinas Classic Wednesday night. Shullsburg will look to bounce back when Darlington comes to town Monday night for a non-conference game between neighboring schools. The Redbirds suffered a 60–49 loss to Black Hawk two days before Christmas and are now 6–4 on the season after a 4–0 start.
GIRLS BASKETBALL: Mineral Point (6–3, 3–0 SWAL, #6 in D4) at Iowa–Grant (5–2, 2–1 SWAL), Tuesday, Jan. 3, 7:30 p.m.
The banged up Panthers will host the sixth-ranked Pointers in a make-up game from Dec. 17. Point is 6–3 overall after back-to-back losses to Richland Center and Mount Horeb at the Richland Center Candy Cane Classic on Tuesday and Wednesday, but remains unbeaten in the SWAL at 3–0. Iowa–Grant is a game back in the league standings and 5–2 overall after a 62–25 beat down of Pecatonica last Thursday. Freshman Olivia Liddicoat, who scored a career-high 34 points in that game, is averaging 22.3 points per game for the Panthers.