This week has been just as much about the experience as it’s been about the game for the Central High School boys basketball team.
Ending the season at the Kohl Center in Madison is the only way senior Noah Parcher knows how to end a season. He has played for the Red Raiders in a couple of WIAA Division 2 semifinal losses and helped them win a championship in 2017.
Parcher suits up for his fifth state game Friday when third-seeded Central (24-2) plays second-seeded Milwaukee Washington (21-5) in a 3:15 p.m. semifinal.
“Isn’t that amazing?” Central coach Todd Fergot said. “He’s getting to play there four times. What a career.”
Bangor (25-1) competes Friday for a chance to win its second straight Division 5 championship. The third-seeded Cardinals meet Marshfield Columbus Catholic (25-2) in a semifinal scheduled to begin about 10:45 a.m.
Nothing that happened this week was a surprise to Parcher because Fergot has found the routine that suits his team. Practices are the same, and the travel schedule is the same.
Perhaps players from this year’s team spent time during Thursday afternoon’s Division 3 semifinals signing autographs the way Kobe King and Bailey Kale — Parcher even got in on it as a sophomore — did in 2017.
The crown jewel of the week outside of games for Fergot is the dinner he schedules for Thursday nights. It includes time to celebrate another accomplishment with current and former players, all of whom have had a hand in taking the program where it is.
“Anyone who comes down is welcomed to join us,” Fergot said. “That is a very special part of this for me.”