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50 years ago.......
denquist
#1 Posted : Monday, March 14, 2011 7:48:08 AM(UTC)
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One of the greatest teams ever to come out of northern Wisconsin..... Rice Lake Warriors of 1961. Undefeated regular season.... 17-0 Total record = 24.1

nc. Superior East = 48-61
Barron = 48-71
Spooner = 45-77
nc. Menomonie = 52-72
Bloomer = 34-73
Chetek = 52-60
Cumberland = 49-65
Hayward = 37-79
Ladysmith = 56-68
Barron = 44-77
Spooner = 50-79
Bloomer = 43-71
Cumberland = 57-70
Chetek = 41-89
nc. Menomonie = 52-81
Hayward = 54-85
Ladysmith = 47-80 non-conference 3-0
................................... Heart o' North Conference 14-0
Spooner = 43-84 Tournament 7 -1 2nd place
Cumberland = 48-58
Amery = 52-76
Mellen = 73-107
Park Falls = 47-84
Reedsburg = 68-90
Waukesha = 73-82
Milw. Lincoln = 77-75 ot
74.5 - 46.9 pts per game conference
74.0 - 47.5 pts per game reg. season
82.0 - 60.1 pts per game tournament
76.5 - 51.6 pts per game season

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afan1
#2 Posted : Monday, March 14, 2011 7:54:02 AM(UTC)

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That was back in the one div. days and Mil. Ln won 77-75 in OT.
Can I ask what made you think of that team ? Did you play ?
"The name All-Northwest itself means something to readers of the Leader-Telegram." ?

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denquist
#3 Posted : Monday, March 14, 2011 10:39:19 AM(UTC)
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Rice Lake's my home-town .... was a kid in '61'.... saw nearly every game that season. Gyms were full or nearly full every game. Yes - one division back then. Tournament ....Rice Lake scoring record and Spooner Sectional record of 107 points. State semi-finals: Waukesha only had one high school then & they were rated #1 in the state. Milwaukee Lincoln game was the first ever championship game to go overtime..... what a heart-breaker. Lots of good memories tho!
denquist
#4 Posted : Monday, March 14, 2011 10:43:45 AM(UTC)
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Milwaukee Lincoln : 17 - 14 - 22 - 16 - 8 = 77
Rice Lake : 15 - 25 - 13 - 16 - 6 = 75 ot.

Lincoln scored the winning basket with just 5 seconds remaining.....
mickjagger
#5 Posted : Tuesday, March 15, 2011 9:02:27 AM(UTC)

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denquist wrote:


One of the greatest teams ever to come out of northern Wisconsin..... Rice Lake Warriors of 1961. Undefeated regular season.... 17-0 Total record = 24.1

nc. Superior East = 48-61
Barron = 48-71
Spooner = 45-77
nc. Menomonie = 52-72
Bloomer = 34-73
Chetek = 52-60
Cumberland = 49-65
Hayward = 37-79
Ladysmith = 56-68
Barron = 44-77
Spooner = 50-79
Bloomer = 43-71
Cumberland = 57-70
Chetek = 41-89
nc. Menomonie = 52-81
Hayward = 54-85
Ladysmith = 47-80 non-conference 3-0
................................... Heart o' North Conference 14-0
Spooner = 43-84 Tournament 7 -1 2nd place
Cumberland = 48-58
Amery = 52-76
Mellen = 73-107
Park Falls = 47-84
Reedsburg = 68-90
Waukesha = 73-82
Milw. Lincoln = 77-75 ot
74.5 - 46.9 pts per game conference
74.0 - 47.5 pts per game reg. season
82.0 - 60.1 pts per game tournament
76.5 - 51.6 pts per game season



Very impressive. A couple years before my 1st state tournament memories. One of the 1st small-school teams I recall playing in Madison under the old 1-division format was Cumberland in the mid-'60's with John Schell. Another small-school that caught the state's fancy with a deep tourney run in the mid-'60's was tiny Alma. And, Dodgeville captured a state championship in '64 a year after finishing as the state runner-up.

Of course the later '60's featured the high-octane Milwaukee Lincoln teams with players like Clarence Sherrod, Freddie Brown, Ellis Turrentine & David Higgenbottom, coached by Jimmy Smallins. Great memories.


afan1
#6 Posted : Tuesday, March 15, 2011 9:33:23 AM(UTC)

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Great WIAA memories..

Half court game winner in overtime by St Croix falls in the early 1990's.
"The name All-Northwest itself means something to readers of the Leader-Telegram." ?

DO JUSTICE, LOVE MERCY, WALK HUMBLY
denquist
#7 Posted : Tuesday, March 15, 2011 9:43:30 AM(UTC)
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Yeah Cumberland was a powerhouse in '64' and '65'...... in '64' they were ranked 9th in the state and Rice Lake beat them in the regional 80-60. Rice Lake then lost in the sectional to little Frederic and Frederic went to Madison. In '65' Cumberland beat Ashland in the sectional final 98-90 and took 3rd place in Madison. Must of been about '65' or '66' when tiny Alma went to state......
mickjagger
#8 Posted : Tuesday, March 15, 2011 12:43:01 PM(UTC)

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denquist wrote:


Yeah Cumberland was a powerhouse in '64' and '65'...... in '64' they were ranked 9th in the state and Rice Lake beat them in the regional 80-60. Rice Lake then lost in the sectional to little Frederic and Frederic went to Madison. In '65' Cumberland beat Ashland in the sectional final 98-90 and took 3rd place in Madison. Must of been about '65' or '66' when tiny Alma went to state......





Did a little research ..... other small schools in the '60's & early '70's who made it to Madison under the 1-class format before the WIAA went to 2 classes in 1972: Drummond '62, Clintonville '63, Frederic '64, Waterloo '64, Barron '67, Durand '70 and Cumberland again in '71. Ah, the days of Cinderella. Remind me again, why did we go to more than 1 class?
ckumpula
#9 Posted : Wednesday, March 16, 2011 11:04:45 AM(UTC)
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As the quasi-official historian of the Spooner Sectional, I write an insert for the program each year. This year I did a story on the '61 Rice Lake team. While there were some pretty good teams out of Superior and Eau Claire, plus eventual state champions from Hurley ('49) and St. Croix Falls ('50), in addition to the John Schell-led Cumberland team in '65 and Barron in '67, I do think that the '61 Rice Lake team was the best ever. There may have been teams with 2 or 3 better players, but RL had 4 who averaged in double figures and was very deep. And despite being considered a "big" school, especially in northern Wisconsin, the down-state writers called them the "Cinderella" team at state.

Yes, why did we go to divisions?

By the way, the headline on March 4, 2000 in the Jounal-Sentinel read, "Spooner Sectional Was the Place to Be For Decades." Cliff Christl wrote a nice feature story on the fact that the Spooner Sectional was the longest-running sectional in the state; 1943-present and about HJ Antholz who ran the district (and maybe the WIAA?) for many years.


altstu2
#10 Posted : Wednesday, March 16, 2011 12:20:12 PM(UTC)
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ckumpula wrote:


As the quasi-official historian of the Spooner Sectional, I write an insert for the program each year. This year I did a story on the '61 Rice Lake team. While there were some pretty good teams out of Superior and Eau Claire, plus eventual state champions from Hurley ('49) and St. Croix Falls ('50), in addition to the John Schell-led Cumberland team in '65 and Barron in '67, I do think that the '61 Rice Lake team was the best ever. There may have been teams with 2 or 3 better players, but RL had 4 who averaged in double figures and was very deep. And despite being considered a "big" school, especially in northern Wisconsin, the down-state writers called them the "Cinderella" team at state.

Yes, why did we go to divisions?

By the way, the headline on March 4, 2000 in the Jounal-Sentinel read, "Spooner Sectional Was the Place to Be For Decades." Cliff Christl wrote a nice feature story on the fact that the Spooner Sectional was the longest-running sectional in the state; 1943-present and about HJ Antholz who ran the district (and maybe the WIAA?) for many years.


As long as I can remember Spooner hosted both Class B and Class C sectionals
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ckumpula
#11 Posted : Wednesday, March 16, 2011 2:28:50 PM(UTC)
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That tells me two things... 1) You're a lot younger than I am. "Class" basketball started in 1972 with A & B and quickly expanded to three classes in 1974. 2) You probably remember the "glory" days of the early "class" tournaments. We'd have 2 games on Thursday night (one class), 2 games on Friday night (the other class), then 2 games (consolation AND championship) on Saturday afternoon, and finally 2 games (consolation AND championship) on Saturday night. That only lasted for a few years before the WIAA got rid of the consolation games on Saturday. Those of us who worked the tournament loved it... we'd see 8 sectional-level games in 36 hours.
mickjagger
#12 Posted : Wednesday, March 16, 2011 2:57:26 PM(UTC)

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ckumpula wrote:


As the quasi-official historian of the Spooner Sectional, I write an insert for the program each year. This year I did a story on the '61 Rice Lake team. While there were some pretty good teams out of Superior and Eau Claire, plus eventual state champions from Hurley ('49) and St. Croix Falls ('50), in addition to the John Schell-led Cumberland team in '65 and Barron in '67, I do think that the '61 Rice Lake team was the best ever. There may have been teams with 2 or 3 better players, but RL had 4 who averaged in double figures and was very deep. And despite being considered a "big" school, especially in northern Wisconsin, the down-state writers called them the "Cinderella" team at state.

Yes, why did we go to divisions?

By the way, the headline on March 4, 2000 in the Journal-Sentinel read, "Spooner Sectional Was the Place to Be For Decades." Cliff Christl wrote a nice feature story on the fact that the Spooner Sectional was the longest-running sectional in the state; 1943-present and about HJ Antholz who ran the district (and maybe the WIAA?) for many years.



Cliff Christl, formerly of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, one of the greatest ambassadors of high school sports, the Wisconsin media has ever given us. His well-researched & in-depth columns & articles were proof of his genuine interest & passion in prep sports. Christl was the best.


denquist
#13 Posted : Wednesday, March 16, 2011 3:08:17 PM(UTC)
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Hey c kumpula..... interesting comments..... wish I could have seen your article.
Did you know or remember how the down-state sports writers in '60-61' nicknamed Rice Lake 'Woodpecker-Point'? lol

Used to attend Spooner sectional every year.... but no longer live in the area. Been following northwestern Wisconsin basketball all these years tho..... always pulling for the boys from 'up north', and this year it'll be Clayton and Grantsburg carrying the flag.... Good luck to them!

pk26
#14 Posted : Wednesday, March 16, 2011 3:25:51 PM(UTC)
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Denquist I only ask you if you have a time machine available......so you could transport me and others back to a time when the entire state stopped for three days to see eight premier teams battle for the title. I was too young to follow this great tournament in 1971 when upstart Parker won the crown. Shame on the WIAA for slaughtering this cash cow for the sake of "fairness" towards small towns. Now, we prepare to see the likes of Wauzeka and Grantsburg play for watered-down trophies, against other schools their size instead of going up against the big boys......which is what most folks WILL pay money to see.

Merrill's tournament trip this week will not feel half as special as their other one, back in 1964, when they were matched up against eventual champion Dodgeville. In one other quarterfinal that year, by some luck two small schools (Waterloo and Frederic) got to play each other.

Alma's trip was in 1966, the same year as Grafton's. Grafton had about 600 students around that time, but were growing mightily; they had only 100 students or so up until the early 60s. Back then you could post a banner on the ledge reading "GO RIVERMEN GO", nowadays the WIAA doesn't allow any banners at all. And they wonder why interest in high school tournaments has been in decline.

Looking at photos from these tournaments I could only wish I was there. Over 82,000 in 1970.......why won't supporters of multi-class tournaments understand?
altstu2
#15 Posted : Wednesday, March 16, 2011 11:38:55 PM(UTC)
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ckumpula wrote:


That tells me two things... 1) You're a lot younger than I am. "Class" basketball started in 1972 with A & B and quickly expanded to three classes in 1974. 2) You probably remember the "glory" days of the early "class" tournaments. We'd have 2 games on Thursday night (one class), 2 games on Friday night (the other class), then 2 games (consolation AND championship) on Saturday afternoon, and finally 2 games (consolation AND championship) on Saturday night. That only lasted for a few years before the WIAA got rid of the consolation games on Saturday. Those of us who worked the tournament loved it... we'd see 8 sectional-level games in 36 hours.


I remember when they brought in Class C...the first game each day was a Class C semifinal included with a Class A session...I remember the middle of our game and Beloit Memorial fans began to show up...we always travelled big for a small school...but Beloit blew our crowd size away...plus they were cheering for us...we were certain they had no idea where in the state our school was.
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denquist
#16 Posted : Thursday, March 17, 2011 1:25:32 AM(UTC)
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I agree PK......... nicely stated. I like your time-machine idea. lol The tournament now is nothing like the old days of one division when there seemed to be far more interest & excitement. Plus you got to see finalists in Madison play more than once because there were consolation games for 5th and 3rd place. 'Neutral' fans got way more into the games because everyone seemed to be pulling for a small school or underdog team.

I could see the sense and fairness of a 2-division tournament..... but now FIVE? :( What's next?
I don't know how the logistics would work (probably 2 separate weekends) but in my world I'd have a 2-division tournament with 8 teams in each division playing at State.

I said 'good luck' to Grantsburg & Clayton .... I should have included the other two 'northern' teams Merrill and Marathon. Good luck guys..............


formerscribe
#17 Posted : Thursday, March 17, 2011 3:18:26 AM(UTC)
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pk26 wrote:


Denquist I only ask you if you have a time machine available......so you could transport me and others back to a time when the entire state stopped for three days to see eight premier teams battle for the title. I was too young to follow this great tournament in 1971 when upstart Parker won the crown. Shame on the WIAA for slaughtering this cash cow for the sake of "fairness" towards small towns. Now, we prepare to see the likes of Wauzeka and Grantsburg play for watered-down trophies, against other schools their size instead of going up against the big boys......which is what most folks WILL pay money to see.

Merrill's tournament trip this week will not feel half as special as their other one, back in 1964, when they were matched up against eventual champion Dodgeville. In one other quarterfinal that year, by some luck two small schools (Waterloo and Frederic) got to play each other.

Alma's trip was in 1966, the same year as Grafton's. Grafton had about 600 students around that time, but were growing mightily; they had only 100 students or so up until the early 60s. Back then you could post a banner on the ledge reading "GO RIVERMEN GO", nowadays the WIAA doesn't allow any banners at all. And they wonder why interest in high school tournaments has been in decline.

Looking at photos from these tournaments I could only wish I was there. Over 82,000 in 1970.......why won't supporters of multi-class tournaments understand?



I think the majority of the people that support multiple divisions do in fact understand. However, like everything else around us today, the game of basketball has changed drastically from 1970 to 2011.


If the WIAA were to experiment with a one-division tournament with eight teams making it to Madison, among the myriad facts that would rise to the surface would be:



1. Outside of Randolph, name one Division 5 school - or even 4 for that matter - that could qualify for state more than once during that time.


2. When the eight teams are preparing for the state touranment, the excitement similar to yesteryear would be dampened by the screaming eminating from the southern half of Wisconsin. Let's face it, the state would have to be divided up into eight regions, which means the Division 1-thin northern half and southwestern portion of the state would supply at least three of the eight qualifiers.


The result, I believe, would be similar to the cries from those who this year have vowed to boycott the state tournament: why go when the state best talent isn't there?
billybobble
#18 Posted : Thursday, March 17, 2011 10:24:59 AM(UTC)
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formerscribe wrote:


pk26 wrote:


Denquist I only ask you if you have a time machine available......so you could transport me and others back to a time when the entire state stopped for three days to see eight premier teams battle for the title. I was too young to follow this great tournament in 1971 when upstart Parker won the crown. Shame on the WIAA for slaughtering this cash cow for the sake of "fairness" towards small towns. Now, we prepare to see the likes of Wauzeka and Grantsburg play for watered-down trophies, against other schools their size instead of going up against the big boys......which is what most folks WILL pay money to see.

Merrill's tournament trip this week will not feel half as special as their other one, back in 1964, when they were matched up against eventual champion Dodgeville. In one other quarterfinal that year, by some luck two small schools (Waterloo and Frederic) got to play each other.

Alma's trip was in 1966, the same year as Grafton's. Grafton had about 600 students around that time, but were growing mightily; they had only 100 students or so up until the early 60s. Back then you could post a banner on the ledge reading "GO RIVERMEN GO", nowadays the WIAA doesn't allow any banners at all. And they wonder why interest in high school tournaments has been in decline.

Looking at photos from these tournaments I could only wish I was there. Over 82,000 in 1970.......why won't supporters of multi-class tournaments understand?



I think the majority of the people that support multiple divisions do in fact understand. However, like everything else around us today, the game of basketball has changed drastically from 1970 to 2011.


If the WIAA were to experiment with a one-division tournament with eight teams making it to Madison, among the myriad facts that would rise to the surface would be:



1. Outside of Randolph, name one Division 5 school - or even 4 for that matter - that could qualify for state more than once during that time.


2. When the eight teams are preparing for the state touranment, the excitement similar to yesteryear would be dampened by the screaming eminating from the southern half of Wisconsin. Let's face it, the state would have to be divided up into eight regions, which means the Division 1-thin northern half and southwestern portion of the state would supply at least three of the eight qualifiers.


The result, I believe, would be similar to the cries from those who this year have vowed to boycott the state tournament: why go when the state best talent isn't there?


You make a very good point. Maybe someone could come up with 8 "mythical" sectionals by region and then we could surmise who would be the eight schools in a one class tournament. Note: It is unlikely everyone on here would agree with the picks. LOL
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