Lakeland fields at Brightondale to host state baseball tournament

The Lakeland Little League baseball field complex at Brightondale County Park will host the baseball majors state tournament for the next week.

The Lakeland Little League baseball field complex at Brightondale County Park will host the baseball majors state tournament for the next week.

Wouldn’t it be great if the World Series could be played right here in Western Kenosha County?

Well it’s not THE World Series but it is a World Series of sorts. Lakeland’s Brightondale County Park Little League baseball complex will be playing host to the¬†Wisconsin State Major Baseball tournament for the next week, starting with games Saturday afternoon.

A team from each of the state’s six Little League divisions will be coming to town to decide who will represent Wisconsin in the play that ultimately ends up in the Little League World Series played in Williamsport, Penn.

It’s the first time the state tournament has been played in Western Kenosha County, said Lakeland Little League President Wally Zirbel. The host field ¬†rotates each year to a location within one of the six divisions.

“This is the first year Lakeland has it because we’ve never had a facility like this,” Zirbel explained.

The four-field complex is located on the north end of Brightondale County Park. It came on line two seasons ago, after a cooperative effort between Lakeland and the county.

Zirbel was at the fields Friday afternoon working to take care of last minute details. Helping him was Kevin Auseth, who with his wife Linda is acting as district administrator. The couple stepped in after district administrator Butch Faber went into the hospital early this week for heart surgery. (Auseth said word is that Faber is doing well.)

The games, which encompass the 11-to-12-year-old division, will begin Saturday at 1:30 p.m. Games will be played Sunday afternoon and then again Monday through Wednesday evening. Thursday will be the playoff and then Friday the championship game that determines the state champ.

Here’s the team line-up:

  • District 1 Champions — Glendale.
  • District 2 Champions — Appleton Lions.
  • District 3 Champions — Lowes Creek (Eau Claire).
  • District 4 Champions — West Madison American.
  • District 5 Champions — Wausau Northern.
  • District 6 Champions — Franklin National.

Lakeland is not in the tournament this year. A Lakeland team did take the state championship in 2005. From there they advanced to the region tournament in Indianapolis. They did well there, winning three of their four pool games. Eventually, they lost to region runner-up Limestone Little League (Kankakee, Illinois) in the semifinal round.

The Lakeland baseball complex in Brightondale County Park is located on Highway BB (for baseball?) just west of Highway 75.
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