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Fair with Haze 31°
S 8 mph
KENOSHA — The second-ranked Bradford baseball team will be at full strength when it takes the field for the WIAA Division-1 State Tournament Tuesday at Fox Cities Stadium in Grand Chute.
Star outfielder Nathan Mikolas has been cleared to play after sitting out Tuesday’s sectional at the New York Yankees’ request. The 6-foot-1, 195-pound Mikolas was the Yankees’ third-round selection (No. 124 overall) in Tuesday’s Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft.
Mikolas and the Yankees met until late Friday night.
“I’m going to be able to play at state,” Mikolas said. “A Yankees guy is going to be there watching every move. They just said, ‘to play smart.’ I’m thrilled.”
Mikolas is looking at a hefty signing bonus when he officially forgoes his commitment to the University of Louisville and signs with New York. The Yankees have $378,000 budgeted for their third-round signing bonus, according to Baseball America.
To maintain his amateur status for the entirety of the postseason, Mikolas won’t sign until after the state tournament is completed.
Bradford opens against Bay Port in an 8 a.m. quarterfinal.
“(The Yankees) were totally fine with (me playing) now,” Mikolas said. “They said we’ll worry about it, if the slim chance of an injury happens.”
Because he hasn’t signed, his bonus money or spot with the Yankees technically isn’t guaranteed. But after hammering out the details of his ability to play next week, Mikolas is confident in the Yankees’ commitment to him.
“I know I’m going to be playing for the Yankees soon, but playing in high school only happens one time,” Mikolas said. “I want to finish out my high school career good. So, hopefully we can make a run for state.”
Mikolas is hitting .515 with six home runs and 23 RBI.
Just to have the opportunity to play for the Bronx Bombers is a dream come true for Mikolas. He says when he’s in town, he roots for Milwaukee, but has been a Yankees fan “all my life.”
“I’m truly honored and blessed for the opportunity,” Mikolas said. “I can’t wait to start playing (for the Yankees).”
Citing Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and Robinson Cano’s “amazing swing” among his favorite things about the Yankees, Mikolas said it’s the team’s consistent commitment to championships (27 world titles), that grabbed his support.
“Everybody always plays a full season, but if you’re a New York Yankee, you’ve got to remember that you’re always going to play a second season in October,” Mikolas said. “For them to make it to the World Series numerous times is just remarkable.”
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High School Basketball
The Tremper girls volleyball team waited for this rematch for a year.
The Christian Life girls volleyball team lost 3-0 to Lake Country Lutheran in a WIAA sectional semifinal at Shoreland on Thursday night.
Christian Life put together a 24-17 record, earned its fourth-consecutive WIAA regional championship and did it all with a lineup that had only three upperclassmen.
Kenosha County will be well represented when the WIAA State Cross Country Championships take place Saturday at Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids.
The Bradford boys, Central boys and Central girls qualified along with Tremper’s Mitchell Maegaard.
After a one-year absence, the St. Joseph girls cross country team is back at the WIAA State Championships.
The Lancers will be joined by Shoreland Lutheran’s Abby Lash for the girls race, while St. Joseph’s John David Ford is the lone local slated for the boys race Saturday at Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids.
KENOSHA — Mark Aslakson is in his 39th season coaching the Bradford boys cross country team, and he admits that he hasn’t experienced many, if any, more enjoyable autumns than this one.
“Yeah, this is right at the top, and I think my assistant coach (Molly Ahonen) would say the same thing,” Aslakson said Thursday afternoon, two days before the Bradford boys compete in the 102nd WIAA Division-1 Cross Country Championships at The Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids.
KENOSHA — You get the feeling that even if the Indian Trail football team was facing the likes of Jimmy Graham, Calvin Johnson and Brandon Marshall, the Hawks’ defensive backfield would still be confident and eager to take on the challenge.
Marquette won’t be trotting out any future NFL Hall of Famers when the teams collide in the second round of the WIAA Division-1 playoffs Friday night at Hart Park, but the Hawks will be trying to limit some of the best pass catchers that the state has to offer.
The UW-Parkside women’s basketball team was picked to finish fifth out of eight teams in the Great Lakes Valley Conference East Division in the annual preseason coaches poll, which was released Thursday.
The Rangers garnered one first-place vote and 60 points overall. Under first-year coach Jacob Yorg, Parkside finished 4-14 in the GLVC (8-18 overall) last season.
The WIAA boys volleyball postseason gets underway Friday night, with four local teams in regional final action.
Fourth-seeded Tremper hosts fifth-seeded Indian Trail, while third-seeded Central plays host to sixth-seeded Racine St. Catherine’s/Lutheran. Both matches begin at 7 p.m.