There were no guarantees in the opening round of the WIAA state football playoffs.
Three number one seeds were upset by eight seeds during the opening round of tournament action last weekend. It was even less safe for number two and number three seeds. Six teams that were seeded second in their regional bracket were upset by number seven seeds. And seven teams that were seeded third in their bracket were knocked off by sixth seeds. That’s 25 percent of the third seeds not making it through the opening weekend of the playoffs.
Some big name programs bit the dust in upsets. Unbeaten teams Northland Pines, Cameron, Cuba City, Bangor and Deerfield all fell victim to the upset bug. So did defending Division 4 state champion Wrightstown, western Wisconsin playoff staple Menomonie and 2011 Division 2 state runner-up Waterford Union.
This was the first year that coaches did the seeding for the regional football brackets. Would the brackets come out any differently, or would there have been any fewer upsets if the WIAA had done the bracketing? Possibly, but who’s to say?
Some of the upsets came in clusters. Three of the four top seeds in the northwestern Division 5 bracket (Cameron, Cumberland and Stanley-Boyd) all were toppled.
Three of the four seventh seeds in Division 6 (Boyceville, Pacelli and Kickapoo-LaFarge) were all winners and those weren’t the biggest upsets in D6. That honor goes to Darlington, an eighth seed, which upended undefeated Deerfield 21-20.
Just because teams scored upsets doesn’t make them flukes. Prescott was a sixth seed, but played strong competition in the Middle Border Conference all season. So the Cards’ 31-0 win over Heart O’North Conference champion Cumberland shouldn’t be a complete surprise. Neither should be St. Croix Central’s win over undefeated Northland Pines. Northland Pines’ schedule was terribly weak and this was probably the best test they’d faced all season.
A number of conferences stood tall in the opening round of playoff action. The Middle Border Conference went 4-0. Somerset and Durand showed why they are highly rated, while Osceola and Prescott showed their skill level with upset victories.
The Dunn-St. Croix Conference didn’t get a lot of respect this season, but it went 4-1 in the opening weekend. Elk Mound and Glenwood City took care of their opening assignments, while Boyceville and St. Croix Central upset highly-ranked teams. Only Mondovi, which drew undefeated Lancaster, couldn’t make it through the opening weekend.
Here is the list of second round playoff games scheduled for this weekend.
Stevens Point at Appleton North – Friday, 7 p.m.
Bay Port vs. Hudson at Chippewa Falls – Friday, 7 p.m.
Germantown at Arrowhead – Friday, 7 p.m.
Menomonee Falls at Kimberly
Madison West at Sun Prairie – Friday, 7p.m.
Hamilton at Verona
Kenosha Bradford at Oak Creek
Badger at Franklin – Friday, 7 p.m.
Holmen at Marshfield – Friday, 7 p.m.
La Crosse Central at La Crosse Logan – Friday, 7 p.m.
Green Bay Southwest at Pulaski – Saturday, 7 p.m.
Cedarburg at Homestead – Friday, 7 p.m.
Waunakee at DeForest – Friday, 7 p.m.
Watertown at Waukesha West – Saturday, 4 p.m.
Brookfield East at Greendale – Friday, 7 p.m.
Brookfield Central at Whitefish Bay – Saturday, 4 p.m.
Rice Lake at Waupaca – Friday, 5:30 p.m.
Medford at Osceola – Saturday, 4 p.m.
Two Rivers at West De Pere
Seymour at Plymouth – Friday, 7 p.m.
Monona Grove at Reedsburg – Friday, 7 p.m.
Mount Horeb/Barneveld at McFarland – Friday, 7 p.m.
Jefferson at Wisconsin Lutheran
Catholic Memorial at Pewaukee
Bloomer at Somerset – Friday, 7 p.m.
Barron at Saint Croix Central – Saturday, 2 p.m.
Platteville at Black River Falls – Saturday, 3 p.m.
Nekoosa at River Valley – Friday, 7 p.m.
Marshall at Freedom – Friday, 7 p.m.
Little Chute at Sturgeon Bay – Saturday, 7 p.m.
Brodhead/Juda at Big Foot – Friday, 7 p.m.
Roncalli at Lakeside Lutheran – Friday, 7 p.m.
Unity at Colby, Friday, 7 p.m.
Elk Mound at Prescott, Saturday, 2 p.m.
Marathon at Amherst – Saturday, 2 p.m.
Stratford at Spencer/Columbus Catholic – Friday, 7 p.m.
Arcadia at Lancaster – Friday, 7 p.m.
Durand at Aquinas (at UW-La Crosse) – Friday, 7 p.m.
Brillion at Kenosha St. Joseph
Laconia at Racine St. Catherine’s
Regis at Pittsville – 4 p.m. Saturday
Athens at Boyceville – Friday, 7 p.m.
Edgar at Coleman – Friday, 7 p.m.
Rosholt at Pacelli (Goerke Park) – Friday, 7 p.m.
Necedah at Darlington
Iowa-Grant at Kickapoo/LaFarge – Saturday, 7 p.m.
Manawa at Saint Mary’s Springs (Fruth Field) – Saturday, 7 p.m.
Manitowoc Lutheran at Shiocton – Friday, 7 p.m.
Glenwood City at Clayton – Saturday, 4 p.m.
Pepin/Alma at Frederic – Saturday, 2 p.m.
Hilbert at Greenwood/Granton – Friday, 7 p.m.
Owen-Withee at Suring – Saturday, 1 p.m.
Highland at Potosi – Friday, 7 p.m.
Cochrane-Fountain City at Hillsboro – Saturday, 4 p.m.
Randolph at Catholic Central – Saturday, 2 p.m.
Lake Country Lutheran at Johnson Creek – Friday, 7 p.m.