kadenb
Why do some boys hockey teams stay independent instead of joining or making a conference? West Salem, Viroqua, and Black River Falls are all close to teams in the Mississippi Valley Conference and Hayward, Chequamegon, Spooner and WSFLG are close enough to join the Big Rivers Conference or even make a conference themselves so why dont they? Other examples are Stevens Point Pacelli who is close to teams in the Great Northern or Wisconsin Valley Conferences, plus Marquette University and USM, who are close to many conferences based on Milwaukee-Area teams, yet they still choose to stay independent. Any reasons?
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mrref
BRF, Viroqua and West Salem were part of the Western Wisconsin Hockey Conference and when the Mississippi Valley decided to have their oown conference, they reject those Coulee schools. Currently, they are considering adding La Crescent, MN and forming a four team Coulee Conference Hockey Conference
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parkside211
I would suppose it just comes down to the desire for scheduling flexibility. In a sport where every team makes the playoffs, there is really no downside to scheduling an abundance of tough teams in hopes that it prepares you for the playoffs. Having a set conference schedule really cuts down on the already limited number of games you can play. I think a lot of teams enjoy playing in some of the various tournaments around the state, and might have to give some of those up if they were instead locked into a conference schedule that could take up half of their allotment of games.

Also, there is such a wide variance of quality amongst high school hockey teams (even more so on the girls side). So, just because you're in a conference, half of the teams in your conference may be either way better than you, or way worse than you, making those games not very competitive. You are probably better off just scheduling a non-conference schedule that matches teams of equal quality. What good does it do for your team to play a team that is 15 miles from you, but you are 7-8 goals better than? Obviously it just comes down to the preference of the coach/program.

Lastly, and I guess this probably the difference between hockey and basketball, but there are just so many more basketball teams than there are hockey. So, it's easier to put together a conference based on geography in basketball. In hockey, with only 85-95 teams on the boys side (30-ish on the girls side), it becomes difficult to develop a conference of similarly skilled teams in a similar geographic area.
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parkside211
This could probably warrant it's own thread, but I'll just stick it here. Manitowoc lost their first game to De Pere, a conference opponent (Fox River Classic), 15-0.

Last night, Notre Dame Academy (in just about everyone's opinion, the best team in the state) beat Manitowoc (probably the worst team in the state) by a score of 26-0. You read that right. NDA outshot Manitowoc by a count of 112-3. Again, you read that right. Notre Dame led 17-0 after the first period.

Notre Dame and Manitowoc are both in the same conference. I think this is another reason some teams choose not to join conferences. There is absolutely no reason for this game to be played, other than them being in the same conference. Neither team gets anything out of this game. It does nothing for Notre Dame (except maybe inflate their heads) and it does nothing for Manitowoc but humiliate them. In Manitowoc's case, they'd probably just be better off scheduling an independent schedule of the bottom 1/3 teams around the state. That said though, they might have trouble getting games. If nothing else, I guess being in a conference at least guarantees games, even if they end up like this.

I don't want this to sound like I'm coming down on either team, I'm not. This was just one of those unfortunate things that everyone knew was coming. I wish Manitowoc the best of luck. They are surely going to take lumps, but I'm all for getting as many WIAA teams as we can, so I hope their program can continue to build and sustain a WIAA program.
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amped0808
parkside211 wrote:
This could probably warrant it's own thread, but I'll just stick it here. Manitowoc lost their first game to De Pere, a conference opponent (Fox River Classic), 15-0.

Last night, Notre Dame Academy (in just about everyone's opinion, the best team in the state) beat Manitowoc (probably the worst team in the state) by a score of 26-0. You read that right. NDA outshot Manitowoc by a count of 112-3. Again, you read that right. Notre Dame led 17-0 after the first period.

Notre Dame and Manitowoc are both in the same conference. I think this is another reason some teams choose not to join conferences. There is absolutely no reason for this game to be played, other than them being in the same conference. Neither team gets anything out of this game. It does nothing for Notre Dame (except maybe inflate their heads) and it does nothing for Manitowoc but humiliate them. In Manitowoc's case, they'd probably just be better off scheduling an independent schedule of the bottom 1/3 teams around the state. That said though, they might have trouble getting games. If nothing else, I guess being in a conference at least guarantees games, even if they end up like this.

I don't want this to sound like I'm coming down on either team, I'm not. This was just one of those unfortunate things that everyone knew was coming. I wish Manitowoc the best of luck. They are surely going to take lumps, but I'm all for getting as many WIAA teams as we can, so I hope their program can continue to build and sustain a WIAA program.


That caught the eyes of Deadspin today.

http://deadspin.com/this-is-the-carnage-of-a-26-0-prep-hockey-game-1472426934
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hueby
So true on the NDA/Manty United game- those games really don't help anyone. If Manty United continued to play hard & didn't quit, it does tell you something about them.

Tough situation. It's good to see Manitowoc have a team. Guess you have to start somewhere. On NDA's side you always want to play hard and give your best. We stress this in athletics. You can see NDA didn't play their returning goalie. Look what happened in MI the other day. One team got up by 4 goals, decided to coast the rest of the game then the other team ended up sending the game into OT.

In Michigan they have a mercy rule where the game stops when a team gets up by 8 points (Believe it's not until the 2nd period I don't remember). The advantage of "run time" like in Wisconsin is more playing time. In Michigan many teams travel for 2 (+) hours for a game, then to have it stop so early can be a bummer. Suppose the refs like the pay in these games.[]

Like I mentioned in a MI forum, the only way around this I can think of is what a good friend of mine had to do when he played. When they got up on a team by like 10 goals a player could not shoot on net until everybody on the ice passed the puck at least once. After the shot if the play continued, the passing rule started over again. This way you were still in the attack mode. Just working on your passing game.

Some coaches would also have players switch positions. Forwards would play defense, defensemen play up as forwards.

Do know of a team that was winning really big, so they pulled a player and worked on their PK. Not sure if that's a good idea though! That would be rubbing it in!
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derekrobarge17
kadenb wrote:
Why do some boys hockey teams stay independent instead of joining or making a conference? West Salem, Viroqua, and Black River Falls are all close to teams in the Mississippi Valley Conference and Hayward, Chequamegon, Spooner and WSFLG are close enough to join the Big Rivers Conference or even make a conference themselves so why dont they? Other examples are Stevens Point Pacelli who is close to teams in the Great Northern or Wisconsin Valley Conferences, plus Marquette University and USM, who are close to many conferences based on Milwaukee-Area teams, yet they still choose to stay independent. Any reasons?


It wouldn't be pretty if Hayward, Chequamegon, and Spooner played in the Big Rivers. Let alone they are much too small for it. Hayward would have the best shot, but still they have a long shot. WSFLG plays in a Minnesota conference. At least they have the last 2 years.
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importfromil
parkside211 wrote:
Last night, Notre Dame Academy (in just about everyone's opinion, the best team in the state) beat Manitowoc (probably the worst team in the state) by a score of 26-0. You read that right. NDA outshot Manitowoc by a count of 112-3. Again, you read that right. Notre Dame led 17-0 after the first period.

Wisconsin Prep Hockey has shots at 87-3, but still ... that's with a running clock after 7-0 (which was hit just 4:17 into the game) and the game shortened (stats show only 45 minutes of playing time). Manitowoc took a 5-minute major about 3 minutes into the 1st, NDA proceeded to score 7 times on the ensuing PP.

parkside211 wrote:
There is absolutely no reason for this game to be played, other than them being in the same conference. Neither team gets anything out of this game. It does nothing for Notre Dame (except maybe inflate their heads) and it does nothing for Manitowoc but humiliate them. In Manitowoc's case, they'd probably just be better off scheduling an independent schedule of the bottom 1/3 teams around the state. That said though, they might have trouble getting games. If nothing else, I guess being in a conference at least guarantees games, even if they end up like this.

While at some point Manitowoc is going to have to play good teams, you're right in that neither team got anything out of this - other than ND being able to parade the score sheet around for years to come.

As far as conference affiliation, the only other option for Manitowoc would have been to find a way to partner with the Badgerland (Beaver Dam, Waupun, Springs) - though they'd still have to run into an Appleton and a Fondy there. It would surely have been better than their first 4 games so far (DePere, Notre Dame, Green Bay, Ashwaubenon) where they've been outscored 69-1 so far (and outshot 288-19). Still, there's only 90 schools playing boys hockey in WI this year; only about 11 of them are independents (Superior is an independent in WI hockey, they're allied with a MN conference). The "closest" independents are Shawano and Pacelli, and then it's over to Chequamegon/Phillips. Without a conference affiliation, there's not many teams available to schedule against unless you're going to play JV teams to start off - and most of the "weak" varsity teams that might be good early on are long drives.
I'm not saying some things the WIAA does are wrong, ... I'm just saying, "I find it weird."
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parkside211
Thanks for the update on the shots. The original number came from WiPH, so they must have adjusted the scoresheet since then.

Regarding the independent schedule, you have to keep in mind that hockey is different from basketball and football with regards to conference schedules. Most hockey conferences are set up so teams only play each other once (this is kind of lame in my opinion, but whatever). In some cases, this means teams might only have 4-9 conference games. With being allowed to play 22-ish games, this allows for a lot of schedule flexibility (obviously more than football, and much moreso than even basketball in which some teams might play 16-20 conference games). So, I guess my point is that even if Manitowoc decided against joining the FRC, they'd still have plenty of opportunities to play an independent schedule as teams like Grafton, De Forest, Oshkosh, Sheboygan, Monroe, Shawano, etc., while they may or may not be in a conference, still have plenty of room in their non-conference schedule.
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iwishiwasaballer
importfromil wrote:
parkside211 wrote:
There is absolutely no reason for this game to be played, other than them being in the same conference. Neither team gets anything out of this game. It does nothing for Notre Dame (except maybe inflate their heads) and it does nothing for Manitowoc but humiliate them. In Manitowoc's case, they'd probably just be better off scheduling an independent schedule of the bottom 1/3 teams around the state. That said though, they might have trouble getting games. If nothing else, I guess being in a conference at least guarantees games, even if they end up like this.

While at some point Manitowoc is going to have to play good teams, you're right in that neither team got anything out of this - other than ND being able to parade the score sheet around for years to come.

As far as conference affiliation, the only other option for Manitowoc would have been to find a way to partner with the Badgerland (Beaver Dam, Waupun, Springs) - though they'd still have to run into an Appleton and a Fondy there. It would surely have been better than their first 4 games so far (DePere, Notre Dame, Green Bay, Ashwaubenon) where they've been outscored 69-1 so far (and outshot 288-19). Still, there's only 90 schools playing boys hockey in WI this year; only about 11 of them are independents (Superior is an independent in WI hockey, they're allied with a MN conference). The "closest" independents are Shawano and Pacelli, and then it's over to Chequamegon/Phillips. Without a conference affiliation, there's not many teams available to schedule against unless you're going to play JV teams to start off - and most of the "weak" varsity teams that might be good early on are long drives.


Manitowoc was able to get their 1st win of the season last night 4-3 over Shawano. Manitowoc trailed 3-0 at the end of the 1st period and Manitowoc goaltender Ian Herzog faced 50 shots on the night, stopping 47. More about the win can be found here
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hueby
iwishiwasaballer wrote:


Manitowoc was able to get their 1st win of the season last night 4-3 over Shawano. Manitowoc trailed 3-0 at the end of the 1st period and Manitowoc goaltender Ian Herzog faced 50 shots on the night, stopping 47. More about the win can be found here


That is great! Am very happy for Manty United! I see a team like this who never quits and keeps battling and you know these young men (and women if applies) are learning true life skills and getting better prepared for life after high school.
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