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Classic Eight Conference Boys Lacrosse Preview

03/20/2024, 9:45am CDT
By Rick Dedrick & Jason McGillivray

Special to WSN from Rick Dedrick & Jason McGillivray of Wisconsinhighschoollax

The three color tiers from the past Classic 8 conferences are gone and now you see the traditional teams are back together in one group. Kettle Moraine, Arrowhead, Mukwonago, and Waukesha come from the Red variant. Oconomowoc from the White and Catholic Memorial from the Black. The top teams are very familiar foes, while Oconomowoc and Catholic Memorial will have to step up to compete this year. Oconomowoc does bring a White Conference championship from last year, but took a loss from Kettle Moraine in the playoffs. All-in-all, expect this conference to be competitive at the top with some of the top teams in the state.

Kettle Moraine
Last Year: 15-7
Results: Semi Final loss to Hudson
Head Coach: Ryan Cynkar

The Lasers found themselves back on top of the conference once again last season. And, it’s going to take a lot to knock them off this year. Primed with having one of the best Attackmen in Cam Rappis, 69 total points, the offense has four of the top five scores back. On the defensive side, last year’s senior class will leave a major void. Most notably at goalie, where Eithan Davidowski played a majority of the games. Whoever takes over between the pipes, they’ll have a couple of returning All-Conference players with seniors Kevin Veith and Reece Marciniak. Both were 2nd team All-Conference. Kettle Moraine will have a dangerous offense that should carry them deep in the playoffs.

Last Year: 10-10
Results: Quarterfinal loss to Kettle Moraine
Head Coach: Billy Spingola

You probably couldn’t find a better .500 team than Mukwonago. Playing one of the most difficult schedules last year, this team is faced with finding replacements to a senior class that was deep and had a great 3-year run for the Indians. They do have All-State Middie Ethan Conto back for his final season, as well as Attackman Robby Spielmann. The duo will lead a young and unproven team on offense. Defensively, Evan Ban gets his chance to start in goal, he had impressive numbers with limited playing time last year. And Mukwonago will expect Cooper Nanny to lead the way on defense. Coach Spingola once again has scheduled out of state powerhouse programs to test his squad and in state they’ll play some of the best with Middleton, Waunakee and Homestead. We’ll see really quickly if this team can compete with the opening night matchup against Homestead.

Last Year: 8-9
Results: 3rd round loss to Neenah
Head Coach: Dan McLendon

Looking to put a disappointing year behind them, the Warhawks also have to replace key players. All-State and All-American goalie Jack Lauterbach is the most recognized name that graduated. But they also need to find additional help on offense. Sam Schnieder and Caden Viehe, both HM All-Conference, will pace the team in scoring and look for Charlie Perri to fill in some of the gaps. Defensively the top poles are Alec Neuharth and JJ Haas, both had solid years performances last season. With 11 seniors on this year’s team, the Warhawks will once again be in the top three teams in conference.  

Waukesha Co-Op
Last Year: 12-5
Results: 2nd round loss to Mukwonago
Head Coach: Scott Bond

Coming off of one of their best seasons in program history, the Nighthawks have a solid group of returning players. While only 2-4 in conference play, they were able to get big non-conference wins last year. Of the four teams that beat them in conference, they’ll have 7 games against them this season. If they want to compete with the top dogs they will need a big season from Seniors Jaxon Jahr and Noah Steinke, and Junior Ian Menzel. Menzel had 31 goals last year. The Nighthawks have solid players in returning goalkeeper Brady Carproon and LSM Owen Fredrick. There is balance all over the field and with the favorable schedule (outside of those 7 games), this should be another winning season.

Last Year: 16-4
Results: 2nd round loss to Marquette
Head Coach: Alec Kirkpatrick

An outstanding season last year, the Racoons took home the Classic 8 White Conference title. But now they will step up in competition with adding home/away games against some of the top teams in the state. They also have to do without standout Attackman Brayden Buttweiler who accounted for 39% of the scoring. They do have several players that can step up from last year. Seniors Carter Kopischkie and Jack Keddie are two midfielders with scoring potential. Junior Mason Leuzinger can match them at Attack. But, Sophomore Brady Kummrow might have the highest scoring potential. He was second on the team in scoring last season as a freshman. 1st Team All-Conference defenseman, Jackson Wilkey, will be tested against some of the best to play in the state. With the upgrade in strength of schedule, it is uncertain how this year’s team will compete in the new Classic 8 Conference.

Catholic Memorial
Last Year: 0-10
Results: 1st round loss
Head Coach: Kory Mueller

A winless season behind them, the Crusaders will be forced to play powerhouse programs this upcoming year. They only graduated two players, but only returned 11 varsity players. They were challenged last season with scoring, only netting 19 total goals. Now with Kettle Moraine, Mukwonago, Arrowhead, Waukesha, and Oconomowoc on the schedule, scoring will be difficult in conference. They do schedule some non-conference opponents that should allow for some chances at getting a win.  

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