Power 25 Update: May 5


By Steve Nielsen & Andy Sroka
Wisconsin Staff

The WIAA season rolls on, dodging raindrops, and our fourth edition of the Power 25 rankings is live. It was a healthy week of action across the state, so there’s a lot to break down as a result. We welcomed a couple teams aboard the rankings this week, but that conversely means we had to wave goodbye to a pair, too. Check out who’s hot and who’s not, below.

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CREAM OF THE CROP

  • Burlington played three games last week and all three opponents could be found on the Power 25. They split their series with Union Grove and wallopped Franklin last Friday, 22-9, which was actually enough to vault them up to the No. 1 spot in the state, capitalizing on the slip-ups of the teams just ahead of them. No rest for the Demons, as they ready themselves for a two-game set with Waterford next before meeting both Waukesha West and Jefferson at home over the weekend – they’ll put the top spot on the line just as soon as they earned it.

  • The Warriors were dealt another loss this week, just their second of the spring still, in a split series with Reedsburg on Friday. Unfortunately for Waunakee, the uncharacteristic loss was enough to bounce them from their No. 1 seat, one they’ve sat in since the preseason, into the No. 3 chair. They have four more critical games on the calendar this week again, including a showdown on Saturday with the state’s new No. 2, Janesville Craig.

  • Speaking of the Cougars, they improved to 13-2 this spring with conference wins over Verona and Madison East last week. They’ll play a midweek series with Middleton before hosting Waunakee over the weekend.

  • The reigning Division-2 champs, Waupun, are a perfect 15-0 this spring and tallied three more wins last week, including a pair of shutouts. They have a huge East Central series on deck with Ripon this week, which is effectively for the conference title with both teams at a comfortable distance from third-place Winneconne.

TRENDING UP

  • Green Bay Preble took advantage of their full slate of action, going 5-0 last week, which helped them move up to the No. 8 spot in the state. An even better opportunity to move up the board is on deck; they have two games with neighbors Green Bay Southwest before taking on a sound Bay Port team on Thursday.

  • Webster’s enjoying their first season back in Division-4 with a 14-0 mark on the spring, fresh off a 5-0 week. For the last three springs now, they’ve become known for their stingy pitching staff, however, the Tigers actually gave up more runs on Saturday than they have in their previous 12 games combined. That could be a storyline to watch, moving forward.

  • Oak Creek has now won five in a row since being swept by Kenosha Bradford two weeks ago. The Knights have won all five of those contests in the Southeast Conference and against Power 25 opponents. They have arguably their most important and personal one next, when they meet rivals Franklin at Abdenschein this early evening.

  • Whitefish Bay picked up three more wins last week and improves to 12-2 on the year. The Blue Dukes are still searching for that signature win on their resume, and could find it this week as they start a two-game set with West Bend West.

  • Sun Prairie’s young squad is starting to figure things out. The Cardinal went 3-0 last week with wins over Arrowhead, Madison LaFollete, and Janesville Parker. That’s six in a row now for the Cardinals who have a two-game set with Madison East next on the schedule.

  • Union Grove earned their keep in the Power 25 last week, splitting a set with new No. 1 Burlington, who needed extra innings to walk-off the Broncos. Union Grove picked up two more wins over Mukwonago to improve to 14-3 on the year. Two games with Badger precede the weekend’s meeting with Racine Park.

  • The Panthers from Stevens Point are also starting to look a lot like we predicted when the season started. SPASH has won seven in a row and nine of their last 10 to improve to 11-3 this spring. Three more games this week, including an interesting contest with Appleton West this evening.

  • The Beloit Turner Trojans are in full control of the Rock Valley this season and can essentially cinch things up with their two-game series against Whitewater this week. Turner is still undefeated (14-0) this spring and won both its games last week.

  • Oconomowoc is up three spots on the Power 25, to No. 21, and are shaping themselves back into the team we expected to see compete for a Classic Eight crown – where they, in fact, have a 1.5-game lead on Waukesha West. The Raccoons have ripped off seven straight victories since a slow start to the spring.

DOWN BUT NOT OUT

  • De Pere slipped up a couple of spots on the rankings after splitting both of their two-game sets with West De Pere and Bay Port last week. Both opponents offered serious challenges, so it’s tough to knock the Redbirds too much.

  • Kenosha Bradford spot their series with Franklin last week which didn’t exactly help them get back on track since their tough trip to Florida. They’ve dropped four of their last five in total, and have three games with Racine Park this week.

  • Actually, Franklin also dropped down the rankings. Despite that win over Bradford, the Sabers had a tough week in the Southeast and capped the stretch with a 22-9 loss to Burlington on Saturday.

  • West Bend East lost both of its games to surging Slinger and dropped to 10-4 on the year. They’re down to the No. 20 spot in the state.

WELCOME…

  • Slinger: Since losing two of three toward the end of April, and scoring just a single run in each of those three games, the Slinger Owls have won five straight and have broken out offensively in the process. They haven’t managed fewer than seven runs in a game since April 24 and have swept back-to-back series against Grafton and most recently a budding West Bend East squad. This run lands the Owls on the Power 25 for the first time this spring. Next up is a series with Hartford before they use Friday to play Brookfield East and Saturday for a doubleheader with Homestead.

  • Sussex Hamliton: There are four teams in the hunt for the Greater Metro title, but currently, it’s Sussex Hamilton (11-3) that leads Tosa East by a game in the win column. The Chargers and Red Raiders actually played their first game of the season on Friday and Hamilton was just narrowly edged out, 1-0. Still, wins over Wauwatosa West and a capable Brookfield East squad were enough to land them on the rankings in this week’s edition. The Chargers play East again on May 14, which could be a huge game for the conference crown.

OUT

  • Appleton West: The Terrors debuted on the Power 25 last Monday but weren’t able to cling to the rankings after taking losses to Kimberly and Neenah last week. They closed the weekend with a 10-1 win over Oshkosh West, however, and they have an opportunity for Power 25 consideration next week with a loaded slate on the schedule, including games against the ranked SPASH Panthers as well contests against Appleton’s East and North.

  • Indian Trail: Arguably one of the most impressive starts to the spring belonged to the Indian Trail Hawks, which began their spring campaign on an 8-1 run featuring wins over Westosha Central, Burlington, a series win over Tremper, and a sweep of Racine Park. They went from an unranked preseason squad all the way to No. 9 in the state. But, all of a sudden, the Hawks are losers of four straight and have lost five of their last seven. Last week, ranked Oak Creek torched IT pitching for 34 runs in their three-game sweep. Next up, a three-game set with Franklin, beginning Tuesday.

OTHER NOTES

  • Kimberly won both of its games last week, including one over a then-ranked Appleton West team, which was a big contest inside the Fox Valley Association. The Papermakers are No. 6 on the board this week.

  • West De Pere’s huge 4-0 week pushed them a spot above Kimberly. They’re 13-2 this spring and were propelled to No. 5 by their huge win over No. 12 De Pere.

  • Hortonville’s sticking to No. 7 after dropping a game to Oshkosh West last week, but still managed wins over Neenah and Fond du Lac.

  • West Bend West went 2-1 last week and split a doubleheader with Port Washington on Saturday. They’re the No. 19-ranked team in the state.

  • Finally, Wauwatosa East went 3-0 on the week. The Red Raiders are up to No. 20 on the rankings and enjoyed victories over Hamilton, Germantown, and Hale last week.

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