All Three Winter Sports Teams Headed Into Playoffs as #1 Seed


Joey Bonadonna, Sports Editor, Online Tritonian

As the winter sports season draws to a close, playoffs are in full swing and all three WIAA-sanctioned sports have found themselves in great company.

Boys’ hockey, boys’ basketball and girls’ basketball have all received #1 seeds, and Notre Dame is the only school in Wisconsin to achieve this feat with all three sports.

Notre Dame athletic director Matt Koenig says he is ecstatic to see the effect the success is having on the community.

“I personally think it brings a lot of pride to everyone involved with the school, from the president, principal, the students, parents, coaches, all the way to the maintenance staff and our alumni,” Koenig said. “There is so much work that goes into planning and organizing a season that when you get to enjoy the success that we are having, it makes it all so much more worth it.”

The Triton hockey team has already punched their ticket to state, after taking down Neenah/Hortonville/Menasha last week by a blowout score of 7-2. They will advance to the state tournament in Madison to take on hometown Edgewood in the semifinals.

The hockey team is returning to state after making it to the tournament the last two years, but another squad is looking to make a run and defend their gold ball.

The girls’ basketball team currently sits at 25-1, most recently claiming their fourth consecutive regional championship after taking down Menasha 81-32.

They will advance to sectionals where they will face #3 seed Fox Valley Lutheran at Southwest on Thursday. With just two more wins, they will get back to state for the second year in a row, but will get a chance to play at the Resch Center, just down the road from Notre Dame Academy.

While the first two teams have a storied history at the state tournament, one program is looking to make history with their first trip to state: the boys’ basketball team.

After breaking the program record for overall and conference wins in a regular season, the team also received their first #1 seed since 2002, before every player on the roster was born.

Coach Bobinski’s philosophy is simple, “Put ‘Notre Dame’ on the next line of the bracket and move onto the next round.”

They will begin their playoff run on Friday at home against the winner of Pulaski and Green Bay West. With a win, they will advance to the regional championship to face the winner of Oshkosh North and Seymour, with an opportunity to make the sectional round for the first time in program history as well.

In the midst of all of these runs, there have been many overlapping games and packed schedules for Notre Dame athletics. While the athletic department has dealt with the chaos, Koenig says he embraces it.

Honestly it is fun chaos,” he said. “I have said a few times in the last two weeks, if you can’t get excited for this time of year and the extra work that comes with it, you are in the wrong business. It is so much fun being able to have home games for our student-athletes who by working so hard during the season are rewarded with having one or two more home games.”

The playoffs also present more opportunities for students to get out and support their classmates to pursue their ultimate prize.

Koenig says to the student body, “You are only in high school once. You will carry the memories of your high school career forever. Don’t miss out on your team winning games, winning championships or even winning a state title These are your friends, your classmates, your peers. It will be so rewarding for your high school experience to be a part of these events … Live life to the fullest, have fun along the way whenever you can.”