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Pewaukee's hot start holds up in Division 2 state title game win over Onalaska

03/06/2021, 8:30pm CST
By Travis Wilson

Pewaukee celebrates its Division 2 state title with fans at the La Crosse Center

Pewaukee blitzed top-seeded and unbeaten Onalaska in the first half and then held on late to claim a 54-37 and the school's first WIAA state title at the La Crosse Center Saturday evening.

The Pirates shot 56.5% from the field and 61.5% from the three-point line in the first half of the Division 2 championship contest, racing out to a 38-24 halftime advantage.

Senior AJ Hintz did the early damage, scoring 13 points before the break, including three-of-three on three-pointers. Ashton Janowski joined him in the en fuego category, as the junior guard controlled things offensively to the tune of 15 points in the first half.

While Pewaukee cooled significantly in the second half, shooting just 27.8% overall and 14.3% from deep, Onalaska was just as ice-cold and couldn't mount a comeback. The margin never dropped below 14 points in the second half, and swelled as high as 21. The Pirates never trailed in the game and led for 34:28 of the possible 36 minutes.

Just four Pewaukee players scored in the game, led by 19 from Ashton Janowski. AJ Hintz added 16 and sophomore forward Milan Momcilovic chipped in 12. Junior Josh Terrian added the remaining seven points.

Onalaska, who suffered its first loss of the 2020-21 season, scored a season-low 37 points, with just senior Victor Desmond in double-figures. The 6'7" forward scored 10 points and pulled down a team-best six rebounds.

Pewaukee's only previous state tournament appearance came in 2001 when the Pirates finished as Division 2 runner-up against Seymour. 

For Onalaska, it is the team's first runner-up finish to go with three titles in ten total state tournament appearances.

About the Author

Travis Wilson serves as the General Manager, Football Editor, and contributing writer for other parts of the site. Wilson was selected as part of the Sports 40 Under 40 list by Coach & AD Magazine and the National High School Athletic Coaches Association for 2019. The Wisconsin Football Coaches Association (WFCA) named Travis the 2015 recipient of the Dave McClain Distinguished Service Award. He currently serves on the WFCA Executive Board as the Website and Communications Director and is a member of the Executive Board of the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association. A graduate of Richland Center High School and Mount Mercy College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Travis was a three-sport athlete in high school (football, baseball, basketball) and currently resides in Reedsburg. You can follow him on Twitter at @travisWSN.

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