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Roncalli stuns M.A.S. to win Division 4 state title

The Jets went on a 15-0 run midway through the game en route to a state championship.
Posted at 6:49 PM, Mar 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-19 19:49:45-04

MADISON (NBC 26) — Not many high school basketball fans around the state gave Roncalli a chance against the Milwaukee Academy of Science in Saturday's Division 4 state championship game.

Jets head coach Joe Garceau even said it himself.

"A lot of people wrote us off," he said after the game. "We saw some social media stuff today about how we didn't have a chance. I said 'Everybody else might not believe in us. But I knew that we believed in us and that's all it takes.'"

"I said 'When people doubt you, go prove them wrong,'" he continued. "And these guys proved how special of a team that I've been saying they are all year."

"We're not going to back down from anyone just because they are ranked number one or their name is Milwaukee Academy of Science," senior forward Luke Pautz added. "We're going to stay in there and battle for each other and when we believed in each other we knew we could do it."

After a back and forth start to the game, the Jets took control late in the first half. Senior Reece Stangel knocked down a shot from close range to beat the first half buzzer. Roncalli carried that momentum through halftime, starting the second on a 10-0 run.

"We knew coming in that they have really strong second halves and that we could not back down and we just had to keep pressing on them and keeping going at them," Pautz said.

"It's all about getting off to fast starts and that start of the second half was crucial," Garceau said.

He also credited his senior-laden team for keeping its composure down the stretch.

"I hope they weren't looking at me too much... because I was thinking, like, 'Okay, keep that clock moving. Keep it moving,'" he laughed. "These guys held their composure and just did a phenomenal job against a very skilled team."

This is the Jets' second WIAA state championship. The other was in 2018.