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Saturday, August 30, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 69.0° F  Partly Cloudy
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WIAA has large winner's circle
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There's no such thing as too much basketball. Just ask fans like me who annually spend three days in March watching the WIAA championships at the Kohl Center.

In fact, there are little TVs set up along the courtside press table, where fans seated in the first few rows can keep tabs on NCAA tournament action. The guy sitting behind me on Friday night kept tapping me on the shoulder and pointing to the score in the Ohio State/Siena game, even as a live game raged right in front of us.

And what a nice surprise it was to see Jamil Wilson of Racine Horlick in the media room after his team lost the title game to Madison Memorial.

Wilson, wearing a carefully knotted tie and turquoise shirt, was proudly displaying his silver medal. "I think it was just a great journey," he said of his team's tournament run.

Meanwhile, finishing a season 26-1 with the gold ball championship trophy in hand can feel more like relief than joy. The burden of a long, stressful season showed on the face of Memorial coach Steve Collins, who admitted he hadn't slept much during the tournament. The Spartans, who lost an overtime thriller to Wauwatosa East in the championship game a year ago, came to the Kohl Center seeking redemption.

And already, Collins is looking ahead to next year's championship. "We talked about it in the locker room just now," he said on his way out of the arena Saturday night. "I've learned that with kids, you've got to plant the seed early."

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