Waterloo is enjoying some recent success in fall sports. Volleyball has been maintaining a tradition of excellence while football has made significant improvements and cross country continues to compete hard against conference opponents. This fall should be a fun one for Pirate fans, here are some games you won’t want to miss this season.
Top spot: vs. Marshall on Friday, Sept. 16 at 7 pm
Waterloo is out for revenge in 2021. The Pirates are desperate for a win over their rivals from a town over, and they came so close to getting it last season. Waterloo was a failed 2-point conversion away from toppling Marshall, instead losing 15-14. The Pirates wouldn’t lose another game that regular season as they ripped through conference play.
This year, Waterloo returns stars on both sides of the ball. The Pirates should be among the conference’s best and will challenge for a championship. Taking the crown means dethroning the reigning champion, Marshall. This showdown means more than just a win or loss, it could be a shifting of the tides in the Eastern Suburban Conference.
Runner-up: at Cambridge on Friday, Sept. 9 at 7 pm
Waterloo junior quarterback Cal Hush had his “breakout” game against Cambridge last year. He passed for 135 yards and four touchdowns in a stellar performance. The Blue Jays also had no answer for Eugene Wolff, who rushed for 141 yards and a score.
With Wolff gone, Cambridge will be out for revenge against Hush and the gang. The Blue Jays have to replace their quarterback and top rusher this year, but should be stout defensively and will give Waterloo an early-season test.
Honorable mention: vs. Horicon/Hustisford on Friday, Oct. 14 at 7 pm
Horicon/Hustisford, a newcomer to the ESC by way of the Capitol Conference, is this season’s biggest question mark. It went 0-9 last season but played against quality opponents.
Horicon/Hustisford has a good amount of production returning this season and could be a stumbling block. This game is the final one of the regular season for Waterloo, and it will have to avoid getting caught napping before the WIAA playoffs begin.
Top spot: vs. New Glarus on Tuesday, Sept. 27
At its core, this matchup takes the top spot because it pits the conference’s two best teams against each other. The Glarner Knights return oodles of talent including 1st team all-conference selection Grace Nommensen as well as 2nd team all-conference choices Amber Horn and Lindsey Schadewalt.
New Glarus finished 8-2 in conference play last season, right behind Waterloo’s mark of 9-1. Both of these squads are reloaded and will have two massive showdowns in the regular season.
Runner-up: at Belleville on Thursday, Sept. 15 at 6:45 pm
Waterloo has a bad taste left in its mouth when it comes to the Wildcats of Belleville. A flawless conference record was tarnished as Belleville pulled off a thrilling five-set upset on the road in the teams’ first meeting in 2021. Waterloo would respond with a 3-0 sweep of the Wildcats a month later, but that mark in the loss column still stung.
Belleville figures to be one of the Capitol — South’s top squads once again this year, and the Pirates will be sure to be on point to avoid another disappointing early loss like last season.
Honorable mention: Milwaukee Sting Center Invitational on Friday, Sept. 16 and Saturday, Sept. 17
This breaks the rules a bit as it’s a two-day tournament instead of an individual matchup, but it’s too big of a deal to go overlooked. Waterloo’s habit of winning a lot of volleyball games has earned it state-wide respect, which leads to impressive opportunities like this trip to the Sting Center.
Waterloo will be thrown into competition with some of the state’s top teams like Hartford Union, Oconomowoc, Kettle Moraine, Appleton North, Kimberly, Catholic Memorial, Waukesha West, Luxemburg-Casco, Menomonee Falls, and plenty more. It will serve as a great testing ground for the Pirates and give valuable experience for the postseason.
Top spot: Capitol Conference meet at Wisconsin Heights on Saturday, Oct. 15 at 10 am
Just before the WIAA playoffs begin, Waterloo will have a big challenge with a trip to Wisconsin Heights High School to take on the rest Capitol Conference. The Pirates will have experience taking on many conference opponents through invitationals earlier in the season, so this gathering will be an opportunity for Waterloo to learn from earlier matchups and grow from them.