N.E.W. Lutheran wrapped up the regular season with a 26-1 record, their only loss coming against Division II Pulaski. Now the Blazers head to Madison to face Sheboygan Area Lutheran in the Semi-finals, a team they beat 98-91 in mid-December.
“You're making shots and all the sudden no matter what they're making shots too, so coming back and forth making shots. It was pretty fun actually,” Senior Kristian Zimmerman said.
“You can sortof think it's going to be a shoot-out sortof, but our goal is to obviously shut them down and play our game,” Senior Nathan Toenjes explained.
The program won a private school state championship back in the 90s, but the Blazers are still searching for their first title under the new WIAA umbrella. A trophy case on campus serves as a constant reminder.
“I pass it every day going to lunch. Small school so there's only one hallway, but that's been my dream since I came to high school is winning that gold ball,” Dakota Zinser weighed in.
It's the last chance to put it all together for 8 Blazer-players. These seniors lost in the semi-finals their freshman year and lost in the title game as juniors.
“Having the experience and the history that we've had I think fourth year being there and five times like that it, makes it a little bit different for us. We set the bar higher and now we have a bigger goal to work towards now,” said Toenjes.
And a handful of those seniors have been working towards this weekend for a long time...
“Me, Kristian Zimmerman, Samuel Brock, Luke Lana and Tanner Viegut,” Toenjes named...
“We've all grown up going to state for basketball in grade school and nationals and just always wanting to keep competing on a higher level,” Zimmerman explained.
Starting Thursday, those guys can help N.E.W. Lutheran get over the hump and bring the gold ball back to Green Bay.