The WSN15 series will celebrate the 15th Anniversary of WisSports.net by looking back at the top players, teams, and moments of the past 15 years (2003-2017).
For the Top 15 Teams countdown, more than one season of a program was considered for inclusion on the list, as long as the seasons featured different waves of players. For example, the 2008 and 2012 teams of the same school would be considered, but not necessarily the 2012 and 2013 teams.
The Top 15 Teams countdown is not a "Who would beat who?" list, as that would be heavily weighted towards big schools. Factors in determining the Top 15 Teams included: how dominant the team was compared to contemporaries, how impressive the team was in big games, quality of competition faced, number of high-level players, and more.
Wisconsin Lutheran entered the WIAA with the other private schools in 2000, and just as they'd done in WISAA, were a state title contender very quickly. After a Division 3 state runner-up finish in 2003, the Vikings let it be known they wouldn't settle for silver in 2004.
In their annual non-conference game against big-school power Marquette the Vikings won 28-6, and it would be the closest final score of the entire season. In Week 2, the Vikings hammered eventual Division 2 state champion Waukesha West 34-0. In addition to rolling through the Little Ten Conference, Wisco also defeated Madison East, a Level 2 team in D1, 48-19 in a non-league game. It was the most points Wisconsin Lutheran would give up all season.
In the old days of a complicated criteria determining playoff seeding, Wisconsin Lutheran received just a three seed in the postseason, as there were three unbeaten teams in the regional grouping.
Wisco made short work of the playoff field, scoring at least 35 points while allowing no more than seven points through the state semi-finals.
In the Division 3 championship game, the Vikings would meet up with Rice Lake, another option-heavy team. The score was tied at seven after the first quarter, but Wisconsin Lutheran would go up 27-13 by halftime and pull away for a dominating 41-13 victory.
The Vikings rushed for 362 yards as a team, with Bryan Metzger (141 yards, 3 TD) and Jon Popp (130 yards) each going over the century mark. In addition, Metzger completed four of nine passes for 111 yards.
Among the standouts for the 2004 Wisconsin Lutheran Vikings were WFCA All-State selections David Kamin and Zachary Ottow on the defense. The fewest points the team scorer was 28, while the smallest margin of victory was 22. The team outscored opponents by an average of 40-7, despite playing larger enrollment schools throughout the regular season, trailing in just two games for a total of approximately five minutes.
#15 - 2011 Kenosha Bradford Red Devils
#14 - 2003 D.C. Everest Evergreens
#13 - 2006 Franklin Sabers
#12 - 2004 Wisconsin Lutheran Vikings
#11 - 2012 Saint Mary's Springs Ledgers
#10 - 2009 Marquette Hilltoppers
#9 - 2016 Catholic Memorial Crusaders
#8 - 2005 Stratford Tigers
#7 - 2006 Homestead Highlanders
#6 - 2013 Shiocton Chiefs
#5 - 2015 Amherst Falcons
#4 - 2009 Edgar Wildcats
#3 - 2010 Waunakee Warriors
#2 - 2012 Arrowhead Warhawks
#1 - 2014 Kimberly Papermakers
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