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Prep football photo: Madison Memorial's Kabaris Vasser

Madison Memorial junior Kabaris Vasser stiff-arms Verona's Haakon Anderson during a first-half run in their Week 6 game. Vasser scored the winning touchdown as time expired in Memorial's 27-24 win. 

Six from the Big Eight. Six from the Badger South. Seven from the Rock Valley.

And then there were four from the Badger North, three from the Capitol North, eight from the Trailways Conference’s two divisions.

What’s more, three of the five teams in the Capitol South Conference were awarded berths in the WIAA state football playoffs early Saturday morning — including a 2-7 Marshall team that went 2-2 in its conference, thus meeting the WIAA’s qualifying criteria guaranteeing a berth to any team that goes .500 or better in its conference.

Marshall will open the playoffs with a 7 p.m. Friday game at South Central Conference champion Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau (8-1).

The playoff qualifiers were announced just before midnight Friday, with teams organized into seven divisions of 32 programs each, based on the school's enrollment (in the case of co-operative programs, school enrollments are combined).

From there, teams were matched into eight-team geographical groupings early Saturday morning. Then, coaches met later on Saturday morning to seed the teams in their group, so that pairing assignments could be announced around noon on Saturday.

Despite the WIAA’s .500-or-better qualifying criteria, 68 of the 224 teams in the seven divisions of 11-player football come into the playoffs with sub-.500 overall records.

On the other hand, there are 51 with undefeated records — including Stratford, which has not allowed a point all season.

The disparity between some of the lower-level qualifiers should be greatly reduced next season, the first year for the WIAA's new football-only conference realignment. Each conference in the state now will have eight schools (though there will be a few with seven), forcing teams to win four league games (three for the seven-team leagues) to clinch certain playoff berths.

In the Madison area, the unbeaten state qualifiers are Big Eight champ Madison Memorial, which completed the first unbeaten regular season in school history, and Badger North champ DeForest.

Madison Memorial and DeForest both earned No. 1 seedings in their groups.

The Norskies, whose coach, Mike Minick, has announced he will step down after the season, won the league by beating previously undefeated Waunakee on Friday, for the first victory in eight meetings with the Warriors dating back to 2015 (including the playoffs).

DeForest and Waunakee will not meet again in the playoffs this year. That's because Waunakee has been assigned to Division 2 and DeForest this year has been bumped down to Division 3.

Waunakee (8-1) earned a No. 2 seeding in its Division 2 group, behind North Shore Conference champion Hartford (9-0).

Madison Memorial will play host to Madison West (4-5) in its playoff opener, and DeForest will open play with a home game against McFarland (6-3). Waunakee will entertain Monona Grove (4-5) on Friday.

Badger South co-champs Milton (8-1 overall) and Stoughton (7-2) earned No. 3 seedings in their groups, Milton in Division 2 and Stoughton dropping to Division 3.

Milton will play host to La Crosse Central (5-4) in its opener, and Edgerton will entertain Mauston (6-3).

Capitol North champ Lake Mills (8-1) earned a No. 2 seeding in Division 4, Capitol South champ Cambridge (8-1) got a No. 4 seeding in Division 6, and Rock Valley co-champ Edgerton (8-1) earned a No. 3 seeding in Division 4, in the same group as top-seeded Evansville (8-1).

Lake Mills will play host to St. Francis (6-3) in its opener, Cambridge will host Palmyra-Eagle (7-2), and Evansville will bring in fellow Rock Valley member Walworth Big Foot (4-5).

Lodi was left out of the playoffs for the first time since 2000. After a 6-0 start, the Blue Devils lost three consecutive Capitol North games to end the year, thus going 2-3 in the league. The Blue Devils’ earlier 40-0 win over playoff qualifier Marshall did not come into consideration.

Other area teams missing the playoffs this year after qualifying last year are Baraboo, Mount Horeb/Barneveld, Janesville Craig and Belleville. Area teams making the field after missing out last year are Reedsburg, Sauk Prairie, Milton, Monroe, Madison West and Columbus.


WIAA PLAYOFFS

FIRST-ROUND PAIRINGS

(All games 7 p.m. Friday unless noted)

(Group seedings, records in parentheses)

(Sites, times subject to change)

DIVISION 1

Group A

(8) Wisconsin Rapids (4-5) at (1) Kimberly (9-0)

(7) Eau Claire Memorial (5-4) at (2) Appleton North (6-3)

(6) Schofield D.C. Everest (5-4) at (3) Appleton East (6-3)

(5) Hudson (4-5) at (4) Neenah (4-5)

Group B

(8) Milwaukee Bradley Tech/Arts (5-4) at (1) Bay Port (9-0)

(7) Manitowoc (4-5) vs. (2) Milwaukee Marquette (6-3) at Hart Park, Wauwatosa

(6) Milwaukee Marshall co-op (6-3) at (3) Milwaukee King (9-0)

(5) Green Bay Preble (5-4) vs. (4) Milwaukee Riverside/Meir (8-1), site TBA

Group C

(8) Madison West (4-5) at (1) Madison Memorial (9-0)

(7) Hartland Arrowhead (4-5) at (2) Fond du Lac (8-1)

(6) Sun Prairie (6-3) at (3) Verona (7-2)

(5) Madison La Follette (6-3) at (4) Middleton (7-2)

Group D

(8) Milwaukee Pulaski co-op (4-4) at (1) Muskego (9-0)

(7) Kenosha Bradford/Reuther (3-6) at (2) Franklin (8-1)

(6) Racine Case (4-5) at (3) Kenosha Indian Trail (7-2)

(5) Oak Creek (5-4) at (4) Mukwonago (6-3)


DIVISION 2

Group A

(8) Chippewa Falls (3-6) at (1) Pulaski (8-1)

(7) De Pere (4-5) at (2) Hortonville (8-1)

(6) Green Bay Southwest (4-5) at (3) Kaukauna (6-3)

(5) Marshfield (6-3) at (4) Superior (7-2)

Group B

(8) West Bend East (4-5) at (1) Brookfield Central (7-2)

(7) Cedarburg (4-5) at (2) Menomonee Falls (7-2)

(6) Germantown (5-4) at (3) Mequon Homestead (7-2)

(5) Slinger (6-3) at (4) Brookfield East (7-2)

Group C

(8) Oregon (4-5) at (1) Hartford (9-0)

(7) Monona Grove (4-5) at (2) Waunakee (8-1)

(6) La Crosse Central (5-4) at (3) Milton (8-1)

(5) Holmen (6-3) at (4) Watertown (6-3)

Group D

(8) South Milwaukee (6-3) at (1) Waterford (8-1)

(7) Milwaukee Reagan (7-2) at (2) Wilmot (8-1)

(6) Wales Kettle Moraine (4-5) at (3) Waukesha West (6-3)

(5) Lake Geneva Badger (6-3) at (4) Burlington (7-2)


DIVISION 3

Group A

(8) Minocqua Lakeland (6-3) vs. (1) Menomonie (8-1) at UW-Stout

(7) Hayward/La Courte Oreilles (6-3) at (2) Medford (9-0)

(6) Rhinelander (6-3) vs. (3) River Falls (7-2) at UW-River Falls

(5) Mosinee (6-3) vs. (4) New Richmond (7-2) at New Richmond Middle School

Group B

(8) Shawano (5-4) at (1) West De Pere (9-0)

(7) Whitefish Bay (5-4) at (2) Menasha (8-1)

(6) Fox Valley Lutheran (7-2) at (3) New London (7-2)

(5) Grafton (6-3) at (4) Ashwaubenon (7-2)

Group C

(8) McFarland (6-3) at (1) DeForest (9-0)

(7) Monroe (5-4) at (2) Onalaska (8-1)

(6) Sauk Prairie (6-3) at (3) Stoughton (7-2)

(5) Sparta (7-2) at (4) Reedsburg (7-2)

Group D

(8) Union Grove (4-5) at (1) New Berlin Eisenhower (8-1)

(7) Wisconsin Lutheran (4-5) at (2) Plymouth (8-1)

(6) Pewaukee (5-4) at (3) Hales Corners Whitnall (7-2)

(5) New Berlin West (8-1) at (4) Greendale (6-3)


DIVISION 4

Group A

(8) Eagle River Northland Pines (5-4) at (1) Freedom (9-0)

(7) Black River Falls (5-4) at (2) Baldwin-Woodville (7-2)

(6) Little Chute (5-4) at (3) Wrightstown (7-2)

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(5) Hammond St. Croix Central (7-2) at (4) Osceola (6-3)

Group B

(8) Campbellsport (3-6) at (1) Kiel (9-0)

(7) Winneconne (6-3) at (2) Sheboygan Falls (7-2)

(6) Ripon (4-5) at (3) Berlin (7-2)

(5) Appleton Xavier (5-4) at (4) Denmark (6-3)

Group C

(8) Walworth Big Foot (4-5) at (1) Evansville (8-1)

(7) Brodhead/Juda (4-5) at (2) River Valley (8-1)

(6) Mauston (6-3) at (3) Edgerton (8-1)

(5) Lakeside Lutheran (5-4) at (4) Jefferson (6-3)

Group D

(8) Milwaukee Obama (3-6) vs. (1) Waukesha Catholic Memorial (7-2) at Schneider Stadium, Carroll University, Waukesha

(7) St. Francis (6-3) at (2) Lake Mills (8-1) at Campus Field, Lake Mills

(6) University School of Milwaukee (5-4) at (3) Greendale Martin Luther (7-2)

(5) East Troy (5-4) at (4) Kewaskum (5-4)


DIVISION 5

Group A

(8) Nekoosa (4-5) at (1) Northwestern (9-0)

(7) Spooner (4-5) at (2) Stratford (9-0)

(6) Spencer/Marshfield Columbus (5-4) at (3) Bloomer (7-2)

(5) St. Croix Falls (5-4) at (4) Elk Mound (6-3)

Group B

(8) Peshtigo (5-4) at (1) Amherst (8-0)

(7) Omro (3-6) at (2) Kewaunee (8-1)

(6) Wittenberg-Birnamwood (6-3) at (3) Chilton (7-2)

(5) Laconia (5-4) at (4) New Holstein (6-3)

Group C

(8) Marshall (2-7) at (1) Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau (8-1)

(7) New Glarus/Monticello (5-4) at (2) Prairie du Chien (8-1)

(6) Arcadia (5-4) at (3) Columbus (6-3)

(5) Platteville (6-3) vs. (4) La Crosse Aquinas (6-3) at UW-La Crosse

Group D

(8) Brookfield Academy (5-4) at (1) Lake Country Lutheran (8-1)

(7) Delafield St. John's NW (6-3) vs. (2) Racine St. Catherine’s

(8-1) at Kenosha Bradford

(6) Oostburg (6-3) at (3) Cedar Grove-Belgium (8-1)

(5) Lomira (7-2) at (4) Horicon/Hustisford (8-1) at Horicon


DIVISION 6

Group A

(8) Lake Holcombe/Cornell (5-4) at (1) Eau Claire Regis (9-0)

(7) Durand (4-5) at (2) Spring Valley (8-1)

(6) Grantsburg (6-3) at (3) Unity (8-1)

(5) Colby (7-2) at (4) Cumberland (8-1)

Group B

(8) Crivitz (4-5) at (1) Abbotsford (9-0)

(7) Pardeeville (4-5) at (2) Manawa (7-2)

(6) Coleman (7-2) at (3) Bonduel (7-2)

(5) Markesan (5-3) at (4) Auburndale (7-2)

Group C

(8) Whitehall (4-5) at (1) Mondovi (9-0)

(7) Melrose-Mindoro (5-4) at (2) Mineral Point (9-0)

(6) Osseo-Fairchild (5-4) at (3) Lancaster (8-1), 6 p.m. Friday

(5) Darlington (6-3) at (4) Benton co-op (7-1)

Group D

(8) Ozaukee (4-5) at (1) Racine Lutheran (9-0)

(7) Random Lake (6-3) at (2) Fond du Lac St. Mary's Springs (7-2)

(6) Johnson Creek (7-2) at (3) Winnebago Lutheran (6-3)

(5) Palmyra-Eagle (7-2) at (4) Cambridge (8-1)


DIVISION 7

Group A

(8) Webster (4-4) at (1) Bangor (9-0)

(7) Augusta (6-3) at (2) Blair-Taylor (7-2)

(6) Clear Lake (5-4) at (3) Turtle Lake (6-3)

(5) Pepin/Alma (5-4) at (4) Eleva-Strum (6-3)

Group B

(8) Greenwood (6-3) at (1) Edgar (8-1)

(7) Athens (5-4) at (2) Almond-Bancroft (9-0)

(6) Pittsville (5-3) at (3) Gilman (7-2)

(5) Loyal (5-4) at (4) Hurley (7-2)

Group C

(8) Cashton (5-4) at (1) Black Hawk/Warren (Ill.) (9-0)

(7) Highland (5-4) at (2) Potosi/Cassville (7-2)

(6) De Soto (7-2) at (3) River Ridge (6-3)

(5) Wauzeka-Steuben/Seneca (6-3) at (4) Ithaca (7-2)

Group D

(8) Rosholt (4-5) at (1) Hilbert (9-0)

(7) Hillsboro (5-4) vs. (2) Oshksoh Lourdes (9-0) at Titan Stadium, UW-Oshkosh

(6) Reedsville (5-4) at (3) Brookwood (7-2)

(5) Burlington Catholic Central (5-4) at (4) Randolph (7-2)


EIGHT-PLAYER

Group A

(4) Frederic (6-4) at (1) Luck (9-0)

(3) Northwood/Solon Springs (7-2) at (2) Siren (7-2)

Group B

(4) Bruce (6-3) at (1) Shell Lake (8-1)

(3) Florence (7-2) vs. (2) Wabeno/Laona (7-2), site TBA

Group C

(4) Lincoln (4-5) at (1) Belmont (7-2)

(3) Port Edwards (6-3) vs. (2) Oakfield (6-3) at Waupun Community Center

Group D

(4) Marion/Tigerton (6-3) at (1) Wausau Newman (9-0)

(3) Gibraltar (7-2) at (2) Suring (8-1)

 

Bucky!

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