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College softball: Zook enjoying monster season with Bryant & Stratton College

Thu, 05/02/2019 - 3:48pm
Shawano grad a force in middle of lineupBy: 

By Morgan Rode [email protected]

Photo by Scott Olson Shawano Community High School graduate Brianna Zook owns a .404 batting average and is the Bryant & Stratton leader in doubles, walks, RBIs and on-base percentage.
Photo by Scott Olson Shawano Community High School graduate Brianna Zook is enjoying a big freshman softball season at Bryant & Stratton College.

Brianna Zook is doing what many college freshmen often cannot — carry over their high school athletic success at the collegiate level.

Zook, who plays for the Bryant & Stratton Bobcats — a college in Wauwatosa — is enjoying a big freshman season on the softball diamond.

As of Thursday, the Shawano Community High School graduate had played in each of the Bobcats’ 37 games this season. The reason she has continued to garner starts and at-bats this season is no surprise when you take a look at how she has produced in her opportunities.

Zook owns a .404 batting average, with 44 hits across 109 at-bats.

She also has been recognized by her college as the athlete of the week on three separate occasions, with the most recent coming this past Monday.

She earned the honor after driving in three runs against Waubonsee Community College on April 25 and three more against Sauk Valley Community College on April 26. Zook tallied seven hits, four of which were doubles, across doubleheaders against both teams.

“My early college success has come with all the practice in the offseason,” Zook said.

Zook leads Bryant & Stratton in doubles (22) and runs batted in (35). She’s also the team leader in walks (20), which helps her boast a video-game like on-base percentage of .496 — which also leads the team.

“My coaches have helped me a lot this year by teaching me new things about softball I never knew and helping improve my swing,” said Zook. “My teammates are wonderful — they’re always there to pick me up and cheer me on even if we’re not on the field.”

Zook’s first college season has turned into continuation of her senior year at SCHS, where she had a .459 batting average to go along with six homers. That helped her earn all-conference first team honors in the Bay Conference.

The home run power hadn’t translated to the collegiate level for Zook until a couple weeks ago.

She hit her first home run against Black Hawk College-Moline in the first game of a doubleheader on April 13. Her next home run came shortly after, as Zook hit another deep fly in the second game of the doubleheader.

While the pitching she is facing now is better than what she saw in high school, that hasn’t fazed Zook.

“The biggest difference between high school softball and college softball is practicing everyday,” Zook said. “Even if it’s in the offseason, we push ourselves to get better and to improve on the little things.”

Juggling that nonstop dedication to a sport and also excelling in college classes is another thing many athletes struggle with — not Zook.

“My college experience has been amazing with all the traveling I have done and the awesome friends I have made through softball,” she said. “As a student it also has been great because I have been able to achieve my goals.”

Bryant & Stratton has just a few games left in the regular season, with a scheduled doubleheader at Illinois Valley Community College on Sunday serving as the last games.

Bryant & Stratton competes in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA). The softball team, which is in its second season, competes in Division II.

Teaching the hard lessons of hunting

Thu, 05/02/2019 - 3:43pm

Photo by Sawyer Rode Morgan Rode, the sports editor for the Leader, looks off into the distance during an early morning turkey hunt on April 19.
Leader Photo by Carol Ryczek Wild turkeys hug the boundary between field and forest south of Shawano.

Introducing my brother, Sawyer, to hunting has been quite the adventure.

Deer hunting last fall, we were embarrassed by a trail camera video that showed an eight-point buck sneaking behind us as we walked to our afternoon spots. The season concluded with neither of us having many opportunities to harvest a deer.

Luckily, he still wanted to give turkey hunting a try this spring. I had the first season in zone 4, so he decided to tag along. He would soon learn that turkey hunting is not always as easy as tagging a bird within the first hour of hunting, which I did last spring.

With local sports teams taking a break for Easter, I was afforded the opportunity to head home on Thursday (April 18) and stay through Easter.

Our first morning (April 19) was a crisp one. As the sun and temperature rose, the toms started to gobble, seemingly in every direction. Only one hen showed though, busting us in the process.

After checking out some public land and then grabbing a bite to eat and taking a quick nap, we went out for an evening hunt hoping to roost birds.

While we didn’t hear a gobble, we did see a big tom on a neighboring property, which set the stage for an incredible April 20 morning.

Sitting near our property line with a hen decoy just behind us and to our left, we sat quietly until the gobbles began to ring out.

To our disappointment, we heard no gobbles in the direction we had seen the tom walking the night before. I pondered making a move toward a vocal tom but ultimately decided to stick it out.

The patience paid off, as a couple of live hen yelps alerted us that a pair of gobblers were a lot closer than we thought.

About 15 minutes later, Sawyer caught movement in the neighboring field. After pulling up the binoculars, we realized two toms and two hens had entered the field.

For what felt like the next hour, we watched the toms put on a show. They hit the field in full strut and never left it, letting the morning sun light up their fans as they slowly moved to the right.

We called periodically, but never got a response. Our clucks and yelps got another pair of gobblers fired up to our left, and immediately the two toms in the field worked back into the woods.

Just when I thought our morning hunt was over, I heard what I would describe as a sad hen, as if she was upset we hadn’t joined them in the field.

I was able to somewhat replicate the odd sound and was answered by a raspy yelp from the hen.

I immediately got my 20-gauge shotgun ready and turned to Sawyer and said, “Here we go.”

A minute or so later, I saw the hen working down the fenceline and right to us. Soon after, I saw the fans of the toms back in the field, again working to the right but much closer to us.

As the hen got closer, she and I had a conversation, but the toms barley budged.

The hen closed the distance to about 25 yards before the toms slowly starting shuffling in full display to us. It wasn’t until the hen was at about 15 yards that the toms crossed onto our property.

Unfortunately, once they crossed over, one gobbler stood just in front of the other, eliminating a shot at about 50 yards — a shot I wouldn’t take anyways.

With the hen peering at us and the toms hung up, I slowly tried to reposition myself so that I could get off a shot if the toms moved in a couple steps and separated.

Of course, the hen caught my movement, despite my brother and I being engulfed in shadows.

My mind immediately began to revert to all the times a hen had busted hunts, including the morning before, and I panicked.

One of the toms went from full strut to half and took a couple steps to the left. With a clear shot, I sent a round at him but clearly missed, as the tom didn’t budge.

I tried to pump another shell in, but trying slowly to do so without getting detected, the shell got stuck. I ripped the shell out and finally got another shell in, but by then, the toms had worked back into the woods on the neighboring property.

Dejected, I laid on my back and looked up at the morning sky. Like me, Sawyer was speechless.

As we exited the woods thinking the worst of the morning was over, he ribbed me for missing. I laughed it off, even though I knew I had ruined the most memorable hunt of my life by rushing a shot.

To top the morning off, I got the truck stuck before we even left the property, eventually having to get it towed out of the muck.

Our Easter hunt had us scrambling across the property, but never being able to get in front of the birds intended destination.

With memories that will last forever and some valuable lessons learned, Sawyer and I are excited to get back in the woods for the fifth season in a couple weeks.

Morgan Rode is the sports editor for the Shawano Leader. Readers can contact him at [email protected]

College Highlights

Thu, 05/02/2019 - 3:39pm

Pietz earns pair of strong finishes

Wittenberg-Birnamwood High School graduate and current Winona State freshman Maddy Pietz won the 400-meter dash and placed third in the 200 at the Saint Mary’s Open on April 25.

Pietz claimed the top spot in the 400 after posting a mark of 58.27 seconds. The second-place finisher posted a time of 59 seconds.

Pietz earned a time of 24.75 in the 200, finishing behind two teammates — Brooklyn Schyvinck (24.68) and Brittany Schyvinck (24.37).

Wagner fifth in high jump

Shawano graduate and current UW-Whitewater freshman Atty Wagner placed fifth in the high jump while competing in the UW-Whitewater Drake Alternative Meet at the Rex Foster Track Complex at Fiskum Field in Whitewater.

Wagner cleared a height of 1.86 meters (6 feet, 1.25 inches) to place fifth.

Teammate Dylan Ferger cleared 6-9 to place first.

Stewart places in top 10 twice

Current UW-River Falls sophomore Allison Stewart turned in a pair of top-10 finishes while competing in the Tommie Twilight Invite which was hosted by the University of St. Thomas on Wednesday.

Stewart’s top finish came in the 100, where she posted a time of 13.37 seconds in the finals. She qualified for the finals with a mark of 13.46 in the prelims.

Stewart also ran the 200, placing ninth with a time of 27.16.

Anglers ready for inland waters fishing opener

Thu, 05/02/2019 - 3:36pm

Walleyes, largemouth bass, white bass, Northern pike, panfish, trout and even muskies — are you ready for some fishing?

While some have been enjoying the walleye spawning season with a frenzy of angling fun on the Wolf River and other Lake Winnebago tributaries (where the season never closes), others patiently waited for Saturday’s inland waters opener to arrive and unleash the action on Shawano Lake and other state waters.

Bob Bohardt, of Shawano, a founder of several area bass tournaments and a member of Wisconsin Conservation Congress’ Warm Water Committee, said despite the unseasonably cold weather and high water, the bass anglers will be out in force.

Bohardt, a driving force behind the Shawano Bassmasters and Redneck Bass Busters fishing clubs, started a Shawano Bassmasters Mothers Day fishing tournament in the 1980s that still flourishes today. At its peak, the bass tourney had more than 100 teams on Shawano Lake, he explained. Anglers this Mother’s Day weekend (May 11-12) can fish that Saturday, Sunday or both days.

Bohardt, 68, said the cold snap and recent high water will affect opening weekend’s fishing, but it won’t slow down the diehards.

The beauty of fishing in Shawano County and the surrounding area is the variety of angling opportunities. If bass fishing isn’t your thing, the walleyes are still plentiful as the spawning season nears an end.

Bohardt, vice chairman of Shawano County’s chapter of Conservation Congress, was out last week watching the Walleyes for Tomorrow stocking boat net adult walleyes, and then milk the males and fertilize the eggs to later release mosquito-sized fry. Walleyes for Tomorrow stocks several area lakes, and Bohardt was amazed at the big walleyes the volunteers were netting, including a few approaching 30 inches.

Walleye fishing has been fair to great on the Wolf and other Winnebago system tributaries, but hampered by high water in recent weeks. New London’s Whopper Weekend on April 19-21, for example, saw the second-lowest overall catch because of flooding conditions.

Next up for river anglers is the white bass season, which is just beginning to bloom from Oshkosh (Rainbow Park is hot) to Fremont. The town of Fremont comes alive with boats and activity this time of year as anglers come to see firsthand why they call it the White Bass Capital of the World. The words “bass” and “fish fry” are seldom spoken together in largemouth and smallmouth circles, but seldom spoken apart when white bass are mentioned. When the bite is on, it’s not uncommon to bring home dozens of fish per angler (there is no daily limit on white bass in the Winnebago system and the inland waters).

Moving north into Oconto County, the North Shore Bait Co. in Oconto is gearing up for the May 20 perch opener and the 39th annual Oconto Sportmen’s Club Perch Derby on May 24-25, said worker Aaron LeBrech.

The full-service bait shop has enjoyed one of its strongest springs in years, and Saturday’s opener sees the shop humming as anglers stock up on live bait, terminal tackle and the shop’s specialty, custom baits.

“We cater to fishermen,” said LeBrech, who said they get calls from multiple states for fishing reports. He encouraged anglers to call them at 920-835-9889 or go to for details.

The almost mythic fish of northern waters and fishing dreams — Northern pike and muskies — are stirring and promising lasting memories for a few lucky anglers. LeBrech noted a 50-inch musky already caught a few weeks ago at Styles Dam. These big-game fish require more than a little patience, but the reward is a rod-twisting yank and hopefully a few brief minutes of glory before the fish is released back to the water (most anglers seeking these species religiously practice catch-and-release).

Sprinkle in plentiful panfish, catfish and trout, and you have a full creel of fishing activity that can match any angler’s goals and pace — from run-and-gun to kicking back with a beverage.

While fishing for most species on inland waters opened, be sure you read about the regulations ( for your favorite fishing waters before casting a line. Check here for dates and regulations:

Ross Bielema is a freelance writer from New London and owner of Wolf River Concealed Carry LLC. Contact him at [email protected]

Softball: Shawano runs past Green Bay East

Wed, 05/01/2019 - 5:46pm
Johnson tosses gem from circleBy: 

By Morgan Rode [email protected]

Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Shawano’s Abi Vomastic, right, slides into home plate during Tuesday’s Bay Conference win over Green Bay East at Martzke Park.
Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Shawano’s Taylor Johnson delivers a pitch during Tuesday’s Bay Conference win over Green Bay East at Martzke Park.

An aggressive approach on the basepaths and a strong start from sophomore Taylor Johnson in the circle helped the Shawano Community High School softball team to an 11-1 Bay Conference victory in five innings over Green Bay East at Martzke Park on Tuesday.

Green Bay East seemed to be on its way to a big first inning, as the team’s leadoff hitter delivered a line drive single to third base that ripped through the glove of Shawano sophomore Naomi Wynos.

Johnson bounced back by striking out the next two batters and got the third out on a liner.

The Hawks (4-7) scored twice in the first inning without the benefit of a hit.

Wynos walked to open the game before moving to second on a passed ball and then got to third on a stolen base. Senior Kate Hoffman drew another walk, but instead of stopping at first base, kept running toward second.

Hoffman slowed before she got to second, drawing a throw from the East (2-6) pitcher. The throw was off the line, allowing Wynos to score easily and Hoffman to cross the plate shortly after.

“It (the play) kind of played with their heads a little bit and that’s what we really wanted to do,” Hoffman said. “When we got in their heads, we took it to our advantage.”

The two-run first was all Johnson needed in the circle.

She worked all five innings, allowing just four hits and a walk while striking out five batters.

“My drop curve was really on tonight,” Johnson said. “I’ve been struggling lately but this was the first game that I’ve been back (after dealing with an injury). I’ve worked really hard the last few weeks and finally got my game back.”

Shawano tacked on two runs in the third inning.

Junior Lauren Welander and freshman Brianna Wright were each hit by a pitch before scoring. Welander scored on an error, while Wright scored when Hoffman walked with the bases-loaded.

The Hawks busted the game open in the fourth, sending 11 hitters to the plate and scoring their final seven runs.

Junior Abi Vomastic singled to open the inning before Wynos reached on a fielder’s choice.

An error moved Vomastic to third and Wynos to second before Hoffman hit a grounder. East tried to throw out Vomastic at the plate, but she beat the throw. Wynos moved to third and Hoffman sprinted to second on the play.

Junior Gracyn Habeck followed with a single to score Wynos and move Hoffman to third — Habeck ended up at second after advancing on the throw.

Senior Bayleigh Laabs then brought home Hoffman and moved Habeck to third on a sacrifice fly. Habeck did not advance when Johnson reached on an error.

Welander delivered the knockout blow with a two-run double to score Habeck and courtesy runner Margo Gull, a freshman.

“This should help push us a lot more for our future games,” said Welander of what the win could do for the team. “It should also give us a better mindset as we go further in the season.”

The big inning continued with a RBI triple from junior Macie Herm and then capped by a RBI groundout from junior pinch-hitter Caitlin Daniel.

The Red Devils got their only run in the fifth after a one-out triple set up a sac fly.

Shawano is hoping the convincing win can be one it can build off as the final weeks of the regular season wind down and playoffs draw near.

“We’ve been trying to play complete games but we just seem to shoot ourselves in the foot — we had some pitching issues early on in the year, and then when we got that squared away a little bit, then the defense sort of got us into trouble,” said Shawano coach Brian Johnson. “The New London game (April 23) we put it together, then the L-C game (Luxemburg-Casco on April 26), we came out and laid an egg and looked sloppy again.

“Today, we looked good. Our pitching was great, the defense was great and our bats came through with some clutch hits.”

Track and field: Shawano girls second at quad

Wed, 05/01/2019 - 5:44pm
Boys take third

The Shawano Community High School girls track and field team scored 45 points to take second at the West De Pere Quad on Tuesday. The Shawano boys scored 31.5 points and took third.

The Shawano girls 1,600-meter runners stole the show, claiming the top-five spots in the event. Odessa Arce won the mile with a time of 5 minutes, 39.11 seconds. Lydia Beyer (5:49.06) and Alice Hoffmann (5:54.65) took second and third, respectively, while Grace Beyer (6:02.16) and Claire Guenther (6:12.59) rounded out the top five.

Reef Anthony led the Shawano boys by winning the pole vault (12 feet, 6 inches).

Placing second for the girls was Tori DePerry in the high jump (4-10) and long jump (14-4.5), Rachel Reed in the 100 (13.93), Morgan Weinig in the discus (85-11) and shot put (31-6.5) and Aubree Zastrow in the 300 hurdles (53.14).

Ethan Chelberg finished second in the boys 1,600 (5:01.43), while Brayden Dickelman took second in the long jump (17-7.75).

Gage Timm claimed second in the triple jump (38-3.25), while Crede Timm came in third in the high jump (5-04).

Girls team scores: 1. West De Pere 135; 2. Shawano 45; 3. New London 40; 4. Green Bay East 33.

Boys team scores: 1. West De Pere 131.5; 2. New London 91; 3. Shawano 31.5; 4. Green Bay East 12.

Tigerton competes at invite

A handful of Tigerton athletes competed in the Tri-County Invite on Tuesday.

Monika Minniecheske placed second in the long jump (14-1.5), 100 hurdles (19.08) and 300 hurdles (57.28) for the girls.

Minniecheske was also on the second-place finishing 4x100 relay (58.71). Jaycee Hoppe-Schmidt, Elizabeth Robbins and Ladia Block rounded out the team.

Robbins also came in third in the 100 (14.46).

No Tigerton boys placed in the top three.

Bonduel freshmen, sophomores compete in Oconto

Freshmen and sophomore members of the Bonduel track and field team competed in the Oconto Invitational on Tuesday. Each team placed fifth, with the girls scoring 76 points and the boys 52.

Madison Kurey won the triple jump (30-9.75) to lead the girls, while Isaac Banker claimed the top time in the 400 (57.93) and 800 (2:24.9) for the boys.

Banker also placed second in the triple jump (36-08.5) and high jump (5-2).

Placing second for the girls was Brenna Hertzfeldt in the 100 (14.11) and shot put (29-9) and Kurey in the 800 (2:41.55). Kurey took third in the 400 (1:09.24).

Girls team scores: 1. Sturgeon Bay 171; 2. Sevastopol 91; 3. Peshtigo 86.5; 4. Southern Door 83.5; 5. Bonduel 76; 6. Oconto 14

Boys team scores: 1. Southern Door 173; 2. Sturgeon Bay 124.5; 3. Peshtigo 75; 4. Sevastopol 69; 5. Bonduel 52; 6. Oconto 7.5.


Full results from track meets and invites can be found on and

High School Highlights

Wed, 05/01/2019 - 5:41pm


Seymour 6

Shawano 3

The Hawks were doubled up by the Thunder in a Bay Conference match on Tuesday.

Kyra Klement netted two of Shawano’s goals, scoring in the 17th and 56th minutes. Brianna Mott scored the other goal in the 30th minute and also had one assist.

Tanessa Krysheski and Abigail Rabideau also had an assist for the Hawks. Goalie Peyton Buerman made 10 saves.


Bowler 11

Tigerton 0 (5 inn.)

Zach Fehrman tossed a no-hitter in the Panthers five-inning Central Wisconsin Conference-North Division win over the Tigers on Tuesday. Fehrman struck out 10 batters while walking three.

Anthony Creapeau drove in two runs for Bowler, while Ezra Spencer, Logan Thiex, Landan Kroening, Brock Strassburg and Fehrman all scored twice.

Landon Prey suffered the loss for Tigerton and pitching an inning. Isaac Schoen and Nathan Hohn also pitched for the Tigers. Austin Hoffmann drew two walks at the plate.

Bonduel 12

Menominee Indian 2 (5 inn.)

The Bears eased past the Eagles in a CWC-North matchup on Tuesday.

Bonduel had seven hits in the game to go along with nine walks. Noah Beilfuss, Joey Wagester and Cole Anderson all finished with two hits.

Beilfuss earned the win on the hill, while Wagester also pitched.

Wendell Waukau was dealt the loss for Menominee Indian. Richard Wayka had two of the team’s three hits.

Seymour 7

Shawano 1

The Hawks fell short in a Bay Conference tilt with the Thunder on Tuesday.

Steve Hoffmann took the loss on the mound for Shawano, allowing a pair of runs in three innings. He did not record a strikeout or walk a batter.

Seymour’s starting pitcher Trent Blake struck out 11 batters over 5 2/3 innings.

Rosholt 4

Witt-Birn 3

The Chargers could not overcome an early 4-0 deficit in a CWC crossover loss to the Hornets on Tuesday.

Kody Szews drove in two runs for Wittenberg-Birnamwood, while Simon Stewart had the other RBI and finished with two hits.

Szews, Austin Worzalla and Austin Rekow each threw two innings for the Chargers, combining for six strikeouts and just one walk. Szews took the loss after allowing four runs — none of which were earned.

Fox Valley Lutheran 6

Clintonville 2

The Truckers dropped a North Eastern Conference battle to the Foxes on Tuesday.

Brock Smejkal and Matthew Morse each drove in a run for Clintonville, while Morse and Matt Seefeldt each scored.

Morse took the loss after allowing four runs over four innings. Trent Vollmer worked the final three innings.

Manawa 6

Marion 2

The Mustangs dropped a CWC-North battle to the Wolves on Tuesday.

Wyatt Free drove in a run, while Alex Zimmerman and Andy Pingil each scored for Marion.

Carter Goke, Cayden Schoen and Zimmerman all pitched for the Mustangs. The trio combined for seven strikeouts, but issued four walks and allowed 10 hits.


Bonduel 10

Menominee Indian 3

The Bears pounded out 13 hits to take down the Eagles in CWC-East play on Tuesday.

McKenzie Wollenberg, Taylor Luepke, Alison Renner, Olivia Lorbiecki and Nicole Koeller all tallied two hits for Bonduel in the win. Grace Tibutis scored three runs.

Claire Gehm picked up the win in the circle, striking out nine batters while allowing four walks and four hits.

Selena O’Kimosh suffered the loss for Menominee Indian. She struck out four batters. Hailey Alegria, MarLee Waupoose and Jalen Corn scored for the Eagles.

Witt-Birn 13

Rosholt 1

A pair of six-run innings lifted the Chargers past the Hornets in a CWC crossover matchup.

Olivia Zoromski and Paige Kurth each drove in two runs for Wittenberg-Birnamwood. Destiny Bagley, Abi Fraaza, McKenna Metropulos and Zoromski all scored twice.

Bagley also earned the win in the circle, working around five walks and a hit by striking out three batters.

Tigerton 9

Bowler 7

The Tigers used a five-run sixth inning to escape with a CWC-North victory over the Panthers on Tuesday.

Colleen Smith tallied three hits for Tigerton in the win. Raven Dewhurst had two hits, while Molly Brehm and Bethany Jobe drove in two runs each. Adrienne Brady struck out three batters and earned the win in the circle.

Tynea Johnson had three hits and three RBIs to lead Bowler at the plate. McKayla Putnam scored twice. Jada Waters took the loss, striking out seven batters over a complete game effort.

Bucks enjoying similar season to 1971 title team

Wed, 05/01/2019 - 5:39pm

The expansion Marlins won the World Series in their fifth year in Florida, which was almost as punctual as the Arizona Diamondbacks, who won it all in just their fourth Major League Baseball season.

Neither of those teams got to the winner’s circle faster than the Milwaukee Bucks, who on the shoulders of an unimaginably skilled big man won the NBA championship in their third year of existence.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar lifted the Bucks from doormats to contenders in his 1969-70 rookie year, and then led the charge to the 1971 title that culminated in a 4-0 Finals sweep.

There is a vaguely similar dynamic in play with this year’s Bucks, who behind a dominant big man posted the league’s best regular season record.

Giannis Antetokounmpo is the Bucks’ 24-year-old, 6-foot, 11-inch freak of nature who has improved drastically over each of his six pro seasons. He is in the process of overtaking 34-year-old LeBron James as the league’s pre-eminent star.

Antetokounmpo was clearly the most valuable player in the league this past season, to such an obvious degree that his not being awarded the honor would be laughably unfunny. Without his 28 points, 13 rebounds and six assists that he averages every game, the Bucks are just another playoff bubble team.

The “Greek Freak,” as Antetokounmpo is known, is still a work in progress. He is a dominant big guy with a style like that of retired Hall of Fame center Tim Duncan, who was as good at finding the open man as he was filling up the bucket. As to how deep an imprint Antetokounmpo will leave on the game by the time he is finished, the jury is still out.

Antetokounmpo is a better ball handler than James but not as accurate a shooter from 10 feet and beyond. At 6-11 with an 87-inch wingspan, there are things he can more readily do than the 6-8 James.

This being 2019 — in the era where attackers can palm the ball and take two steps instead of one — there are things Antetokounmpo can do that Abdul-Jabbar could not. Antetokounmpo is at his best on the drive, knifing through the defense and finishing with a near-unstoppable flush.

Kareem was an entirely different animal. Three inches taller than Antetokounmpo, Abdul-Jabbar with his soft touch and sky hook was as close to an automatic two points as the game has ever seen.

Abdul-Jabbar’s high school teams lost a total of one game in three years, and his college teams lost a total of one game in three years. That’s pretty dominant.

Once they get to the main stage, elite pro athletes are ultimately gauged by how many championships they win. Abdul-Jabbar has six rings, with five of them coming when he played for the Lakers. It should be noted that his only title with the Bucks came after Hall of Fame guard Oscar Robertson arrived. The “Big O” and Bob Dandridge were outside threats that prevented defenses from collapsing on Kareem. With the Lakers, Abdul-Jabbar had two other Hall of Fame teammates, Magic Johnson and James Worthy.

If today’s parallel to Antetokounmpo and the Bucks isn’t clear, it is the simple reality that in the quest for a championship, even the greatest players need help. Michael Jordan didn’t win anything without Scottie Pippen. James had Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami, and then Kyrie Irving in Cleveland.

Antetokounmpo’s supporting cast of Eric Bledsoe, Khris Middleton, Brook Lopez and Malcolm Brogdon was a serviceable lot throughout the year, as the 60-22 record indicates.

The momentum kept rolling in the first-round sweep of Detroit, where the Bucks won their first postseason series since 2001, drumming the Pistons by an average margin of 24 points. The rest of the playoff run will reveal whether the Greek wunderkind has indeed stepped from the troposphere up to stratospheric heights, or if the Bucks were a steamrolling, regular-season phenomenon that didn’t have enough in the wings when the games got serious.

Veteran sportswriter Gary Seymour’s column appears weekly in the Leader. He can be contacted at [email protected]

Weather cramming spring sports seasons down

Tue, 04/30/2019 - 2:14pm
Postseason play starts mid-MayBy: 

By Morgan Rode [email protected]

Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Water sits atop the tennis courts outside Shawano Community Middle School on Monday. The Shawano boys tennis team plays its home matches at SCMS.
Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Standing water fills both batter’s boxes and where the catcher and umpire set up at Memorial Park in Shawano on Monday. Memorial Park is where the Shawano baseball team plays its home games.

In what feels like the continuation of a wild winter sports season to many, local high schools continue to adjust their spring sports schedules to accommodate the uncooperative weather.

The snow that seemingly never stopped falling this winter left many thinking spring sports seasons might get a late start, but most teams only missed the first week or so of action. Just when all the snow had nearly melted, a mid-April snowstorm postponed the season by another week.

With that round of snow now faded away, the adverse weather appears to be back. A dreary, misty Monday forced almost every sporting event in the area to be postponed or cancelled. The weather the next week or so does not look much better.

One might say there’s still plenty of time left to get in events, especially conference ones, but local athletic directors say otherwise.

“We are at a point now that additional weather postponements may not be able to be made up,” said Joel Wondra, Shawano’s athletic director. “There just aren’t many options available anymore. Cancelled nonconference baseball and softball games won’t be made up. If conference games are postponed, it’s likely nonconference games will need to be cancelled to make days available to reschedule those games.”

Chuck Raasch and Chris Nier, the athletic directors for Menominee Indian and Wittenberg-Birnamwood, respectively, noted that softball and baseball junior varsity games are being cut from the schedule to give the varsity squads as many days during the week as possible to get games in.

Despite an unbalanced schedule that bars teams from getting into any sort of rhythm, ADs say coaches and players are taking things in stride.

“Coaches understand that we don’t control the weather, so they’re rolling with it,” said Raasch. “Kids get frustrated easier, but they are still showing up and working hard at practice.”

“No one has complained,” said Nier, in reference to the school’s spring coaches. “They know this is how the spring season goes and just want to play.”

While coaches have kept their teams locked in as best they can, most would probably tell you that the wacky schedule is frustrating.

The dwindling school year means spring postseason play is on its way. Temperatures in the low 40s and 50s feel like early season weather, when in reality, regional games are right around the corner.

Softball teams have about two more weeks to get games in, as regionals open May 16.

Coaches are forced to make a decision when it comes to throwing their top arms, as many teams usually only have one or two girls that pitch.

“We still have four games scheduled this week and next week we are scheduled for eight games,” said Chris Reinke, Bonduel’s head softball coach, on Monday. “Eight games in a week is physically exhausting for all involved — players and coaches. Pitching becomes a huge concern, as that is an exorbitant number of innings for them.

“Then we are scheduled for the following Monday and Tuesday, with regionals starting Thursday. Last year, I felt so many games in a row late in the season really hurt us in our regional game. My pitcher had thrown 14 innings on Saturday, and I tried to have her go on Tuesday and she just didn’t have the zip she normally would have.”

Baseball coaches face an even more difficult obstacle as there is a pitch count limit to worry about.

Teams with limited pitching options are forced to not only try and predict which games they will play, but also the games in which they want their better pitchers to throwing. Teams with several solid pitching options are likely to be the ones with the better records.

Baseball regionals start a week after softball, May 23.

Track and field regionals are scheduled for May 20, with sectionals May 23.

Shawano coach Dave Hanssen prefers his team compete in one meet a week, but that the Hawks are typically in at least two a week now.

He said runners are not as affected as the field event athletes are when a lack of outdoor meets are held.

Competing in the cool and wet weather increases the chance of injury for any athlete. A drastic change in the weather, even it means sunny skies and warmer temperatures — which is most likely during the postseason — can have a negative affect on an athlete’s performance, too.

“The worst is at sectionals and state,” said Hanssen. “The weather changes completely and now you have 90s and you have everyone not acclimated to that weather. Got to love it.”

While baseball, softball and track and field games and meets are most likely to get postponed with poor conditions on the playing surfaces, girls soccer, boys tennis and boys golf teams are often able to get scheduled events in.

Chris Bartletti’s Witt-Birn golf team has gotten its season off to a strong start, but the boys have had to compete in subpar weather conditions.

“When the weather improves, so does performance,” Bartletti said. “It is hard to practice indoors. We hit practice balls, but you can’t determine ball flight. Golf is definitely not an indoor game. We need to be outside to get better.”

Tennis subsectionals are scheduled for May 20 or 21, with golf regionals May 21 or 22 and soccer regionals starting May 28.

Boys golf: Keeney, Resch lead Chargers at CWC Meet

Tue, 04/30/2019 - 2:09pm
Siolka helps Bonduel place fifth

The Wittenberg-Birnamwood High School boys golf team finished second in the second Central Wisconsin Conference meet of the spring behind a pair of top-five individual finishes.

Witt-Birn’s Justin Keeney fired an 18-hole round of 86, while Ian Resch shot a 90 at Glacier Woods Golf Club in Iola on Monday. Keeney took third as an individual, while Resch was fourth.

Calvin Scheurer tallied a 98 for the Chargers, while Logan Balliett (102) and Maverick Beran (108) rounded out the five-golfer team.

Bonduel’s Carter Siolka finished with a score of 91, placing fifth as an individual. The Bears posted a score of 435 to take fifth as a team.

Aaron Schaal shot a 103, while Colin Hanus finished with a 114. Rhett Hertzfeldt (127) and Cooper Uelman (131) rounded out the team.

Marion finished with a team score of 488 to place eighth.

Myles Peterson shot a 115 to lead the team, while McGregor Matz and Cody Clegg each shot 123s. Mollie Schoen (127) and Ellen Radies (131) capped the team.

The Menominee Indian/Gresham co-op finished ninth with a score of 506.

Josh Hoffman led the way for the co-op with a 103. Saswaen Shawanokasic shot a 126, while Johnny Kerry fired a 133. Antonio Perez (144) and Gregory Turney (153) rounded out the team.

Team scores: 1. Pacelli 361; 2. Wittenberg-Birnamwood 376; 3. Amherst 420; 4. Manawa 422; 5. Bonduel 435; 6. Shiocton 463; 7. Iola-Scandinavia 475; 8. Marion 488; 9. Menominee Indian/Gresham 506; 10. Weyauwega-Fremont 510.

Racing: Four men and a lady win on speedway’s opening night

Mon, 04/29/2019 - 3:42pm
LaCrosse leads every lap of IMCA Modified featureBy: 

By Scott Owen Special to the Leader

Contributed Photo Brett Swedberg held on late to win the first Late Model feature of the year on Saturday.

A stout field of cars met a hearty crowd of fans for opening night of the 2019 season on Saturday.

Defending Late Model track champion Brett Swedberg was joined in victory lane by Benji LaCrosse (IMCA Modified), Jeremy Christians (IMCA Stock Car), Jordan Bartz (IMCA Sport Mod), and Shaun Bangart (Mighty Four) as the five drivers kicked of their seasons with a win.

Swedberg shot into the lead at the start of the Late Model feature. Justin Schmidt caught Swedberg on lap two and quickly began to apply pressure. Swedberg then began to distance himself from Schmidt as Justin Ritchie worked his way to third on the track.

On lap 11, Ritchie worked past Schmidt for second. As the two drivers battled side-by-side for second, Swedberg tried to run away and hide.

On lap 15, Schmidt moved back to second and began to reel in Swedberg. On the final lap, Schmidt ran right on Swedberg’s back bumper. Swedberg held on for the win though as Schmidt, Ritchie, Ron Berna and Jared Siefert rounded out the top five.

LaCrosse drew the pole of the IMCA Modified feature and proved once again why he is one of the best in the nation. LaCrosse led every lap of the feature event en route to victory.

Marcus Yarie, Wyatt Block and Mike Mullen applied early pressure, but to no avail. Late in the race, Eddie Muenster stormed past Mullen to move into the second position. Mullen, Yarie and Andy Kleczka completed the top five.

Christians started on the pole and took the lead on the opening lap of the IMCA Stock Car feature. Travis VanStraten and Aaron Karcz quickly gave chase to Christians.

On lap three, Aaron Karcz pulled to the inside of Christians in the battle for the lead. On lap four, Karcz used the inside lane in turn two to take the lead from Christians.

A restart with two laps remaining would change the complexion of the race. Karcz was caught in the middle of a three-wide battle with Christians and VanStraten as the race returned to green. Christians and VanStraten each snuck past Karcz. Christians held on for the win followed by VanStraten, Karcz, Gary Kasperek and Tyler Wendt.

Cole Magnin led the first two laps of the IMCA Sport Mod feature before losing the handle of his car and bringing out the caution flag. Magnin would have to restart at the tail of the field.

Teagan Wudstrack and Bartz swapped the lead back-and-forth multiple times over the next two laps before Bartz ultimately established herself in the point position. Bartz would lead the rest of the way for the victory.

Bryce Clements raced his way to second, while Magnin battled back from the tail of the field to finish the race in third. Wudstrack and Kevin Bethke completed the top five.

In Mighty Four action, Bangart took the lead on lap one as Brad Wedde applied pressure in second. Jason Stueck soon crashed the party at the front of the field.

Bangart would hold off Wedde and Stueck for the win. Stueck and Wedde finished second and third, respectively, followed by T.J. Everard and Michael Brehmer.

Racing continues this coming Saturday night with a tribute to Gary Effenberger, the father of longtime flagman Josh Effenberger and a big-time race supporter. Racing will begin at 6 p.m. More information can be found online at

Softball: Bonduel defeats Witt-Birn in extras

Mon, 04/29/2019 - 3:39pm
Bears score four in 9thBy: 

By Morgan Rode [email protected]

Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Bonduel’s Taylor Luepke sprints toward home plate in the ninth inning of Thursday’s CWC-East win over Wittenberg-Birnamwood in Wittenberg. Luepke was one of four Bears to cross the plate in the frame.
Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Wittenberg-Birnamwood’s Destiny Bagley delivers a pitch during the early innings of Thursday’s CWC-East loss to Bonduel in Wittenberg. Bagley pitched the first seven innings but did not factor in the decision.

Walks and aggressive baserunning helped the Bonduel High School softball team rally from an early deficit and earn a 10-6 Central Wisconsin Conference-East Division win in nine innings over Wittenberg-Birnamwood in Wittenberg on Thursday.

Bonduel didn’t record a hit, but drew four walks to score four times in the ninth inning. Senior Allison Renner, sophomore Joanie Wudtke and juniors Taylor Luepke and Olivia Lorbiecki all crossed home plate in the ninth.

“We just talked to them (the team) and said, ‘build on it. Build on this win and keep moving forward,’” said Bonduel coach Chris Reinke. “We had the one W up north but needed something in conference because we were the only ones without a (CWC-East) win. I think this will help us build up confidence for the next conference games next week.”

“We just have to make sure the girls are mentally prepared at all times of the game — think before the pitch, what you’re going to do with the ball. We had some mental breakdowns and missed some routine plays that took us out of that (ninth) inning,” said Witt-Birn coach Charity Fraaza.

Bonduel freshman Claire Gehm capped her strong game in the circle by retiring the Chargers in order in the bottom of the ninth.

She pitched all nine innings, striking out six batters.

“I think that my teammates out there really helped me. They encouraged me to really dig deep and know that I can do it,” Gehm said. “The awesome plays they made really helped me.”

After senior MacKenzie Moore scored to give Bonduel (2-7) the lead in the first, Witt-Birn (4-4) responded with two runs in its half of the inning.

Sophomore McKenna Metropulos led the inning off with a double before scoring on a passed ball with one out. Sophomore Abi Fraaza, who walked with one out, scored on a groundout by sophomore Emma Herb.

The Chargers added to their lead in the third, scoring twice.

Fraaza singled before Herb walked. After a double steal, junior Megan Konkol delivered a two-RBI single to put the hosts up 4-1.

Bonduel stormed back in front with a four-run sixth.

Gehm scored on an error for the first run before Wudtke singled in senior McKenzie Wollenberg. Renner then scored on a passed ball before Luepke singled in Wudtke.

The Bears tacked on a run in the seventh when Renner drove in Gehm on a single.

Trailing 6-4 entering the seventh, Fraaza and Herb led the Witt-Birn comeback charge. Fraaza opened the inning with a double before Herb singled. Each player scored to knot the game at six.

“The game against Bonduel was a hard loss to us that will leave us working 10 times harder everyday at practice,” Metropulos said. “Our bats started going early in the game but then fell short right when we needed them. Along with our bats falling short, our team as a whole just made too many errors that can only be fixed in practice.”

Sophomore Jasmin Duranceau took the loss in the circle for the Chargers after pitching the final two innings. Senior Destiny Bagley worked the first seven innings, allowing five earned runs on 10 hits and four walks.

Baseball: Bonduel scores late to snag road win over Witt-Birn

Mon, 04/29/2019 - 3:37pm
Bohm delivers game-winning hitBy: 

By Morgan Rode [email protected]

Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Bonduel’s Cole Letter hits a single in the first inning of Thursday’s CWC-East win over Wittenberg-Birnamwood in Wittenberg. Letter finished with two hits and scored a run.
Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Wittenberg-Birnamwood’s Shane Herb fields a bunt attempt during Thursday’s CWC-East game against Bonduel in Wittenberg. Herb pitched all seven innings for the Chargers.
Leader Photo by Morgan Rode Bonduel's Isaac Boldt throws a pitch during Thursday’s CWC-East win over Wittenberg-Birnamwood in Wittenberg. Boldt earned the win after pitching the first six innings.

Senior Riddik Bohm delivered a game-winning RBI single in the sixth inning to lift the Bonduel High School baseball team over Wittenberg-Birnamwood in Central Wisconsin Conference-East Division play in Wittenberg on Thursday.

“I was a bit nervous, but I was just trying to get the ball in play any way I could. I was able to put it in play and that was the game,” said Riddik Bohm on the at-bat.

Riddik Bohm’s single scored senior Parker Bohm from third. Witt-Birn avoided further damage when center fielder Michael Gibson threw out a potential second run at home plate.

The Chargers were unable to put a baserunner on against Bears starting pitcher Isaac Boldt, a junior, in the sixth, or junior closer Noah Beilfuss in the seventh.

Boldt earned the win after allowing just two fifth inning runs. He struck out six batters while allowing just one walk and six hits.

“He’s (Boldt) really focused in on pitching this year,” said Bonduel coach Donnie Gruenewald. “Overall, he’s really locked in, knows where he wants to throw it, hits the spot nine times out of 10. He’s very pinpoint with his accuracy and (catcher) Garrett’s (Engel) calling good games.”

Beilfuss needed less than 10 pitches to seal the victory.

Beilfuss gave the Bears (5-1) a 2-0 lead in the first inning after delivering a two-RBI single. Junior Cole Letter and Parker Bohm scored on the play.

“Cole started off with a nice hit and Parker right off the bat too. So when there was a passed ball to get them in scoring position, I knew I had to get them in because we knew this team (Witt-Birn) was going to be tough and we needed to get out early and send a message,” Beilfuss said. “Get out there and say, ‘We want this game just as much as they do.’ I knew I needed to get a hit in that position.”

Wittenberg-Birnamwood (5-4) starter Shane Herb, a senior, did a good job of limiting the damage in the opening inning. After allowing three straight hits to open the inning, he got the next three batters out.

Herb went on to pitch all seven innings, striking out two batters while not allowing a walk. Herb didn’t allow another baserunner until the sixth.

Witt-Birn finally got to Boldt in the fifth inning, putting together a two-out rally to tie the game at two.

Sophomores Austin Worzalla and Bryce Zoromski each singled to set up RBI singles from No. 3 hitter Kody Szews and No. 4 hitter Gibson, both seniors.

“We just told the guys that they could play with anybody,” said Witt-Birn coach Dan Kapitz. “But baseball is a game where if you start giving teams extra at-bats, bad things can happen. This game should show them and build some confidence that they can play with just about anybody.”

The game came just a couple days after Bonduel earned an 11-1 win over Witt-Birn.

“Anything can happen in baseball — you can never think about the last game, you just have to always look forward and go into every game having confidence in everyone and go in with a winning mentality,” said Gibson on what allowed the team to put forth a better effort against Bonduel Thursday.

Boys tennis: Shawano tops Menasha

Mon, 04/29/2019 - 3:33pm

The Shawano Community High School boys tennis team battled to a 6-1 match win over Menasha on Friday.

Anton Piantek, Joe Mente and Leo Liu all scored wins for the Hawks in singles action.

Piantek earned a tough 6-3, 6-7 (4), 10-4 victory, while Mente won in straight sets (6-2, 6-2). Liu rallied from a set down for his win (4-6, 6-1, 10-6).

Shawano dominated in doubles action, with the No. 1 team of Cesar Ramirez and Chris Black and the No. 2 team of Wyatt Theis and Rhain Rodenbeck each earning 6-0, 6-0 wins.

Nolan Buck and Rory Johnson received a forfeit win at No. 3 doubles.

Singles: No. 1: Anton Piantek S def. Max Kofnetka, 6-3, 6-7 (4), 10-4; No. 2: Luke Johnson M def. Camden Kroll, 6-4, 6-3; No. 3: Joe Mente S def. Josh Ellis, 6-2, 6-2; No. 4: Leo Liu S def. Luke Shaw, 4-6, 6-1, 10-6; Doubles: No. 1: Cesar Ramirez-Chris Black S def. Brodie Pues-Huchee Yang, 6-0, 6-0; No. 2: Wyatt Theis-Rhain Rodenbeck S def. Charlie Lee-David Xiong, 6-0, 6-0; No. 3: Nolan Buck-Rory Johnson S by forfeit.

Track and field: Shawano teams 5th in Pulaski

Mon, 04/29/2019 - 3:32pm
Lowney, Klement, girls 4x8 all take 1st for Hawks

The Shawano Community High School boys and girls track and field teams each placed fifth at the Pulaski Red Raider Invitational on Thursday.

The boys had two individuals grab first-place finishes — Elliott Lowney in the 400-meter dash (53.96) and Michael Klement in the pole vault (12 feet, 0 inches).

The girls 4x800 relay team of Grace Beyer, Carrie Young, Lydia Beyer and Odessa Arce also came in first in 10:19.34.

Placing second for the girls was Isabel Roloff in the 100 (13.34), Arce in the 800 (2:29.86) and Tori DePerry in the high jump (5-0). Alice Hoffmann took third in the 3,200 (12:49.39).

Reef Anthony placed third in the boys pole vault (11-0), while Nathan Krizan was third in the shot put (43-06.25).

Girls team scores: 1. Bay Port 155; 2. De Pere 154.5; 3. Ashwaubenon 129; 4. Pulaski 119.5; 5. Shawano 63; 6. Green Bay East 46; 7. Menasha 24.

Boys team scores: 1. Bay Port 184; 2. De Pere 174.5; 3. Pulaski 101; 4. Ashwaubenon 77; 5. Shawano 56; 6. Menasha 50; 7. Green Bay East 45.5.

Bonduel girls 2nd, boys 5th in Oconto Falls

The Bonduel girls team scored 97.5 points to finish second at the Oconto Falls Invitational on Thursday. The boys earned 86 points and took fifth.

Kara Troxel won the 800 (2:36.33) and 1,600 (5:46.68) and was on the first-place finishing 4x800 relay (10:45.29) — Madison Kurey, Breanna Schnell and Kalleigh Schroeder rounded out the team.

Schnell was first in the long jump (15-3.25) and Jessie LaBerge won the 300 hurdles (50.94).

The boys 4x200 relay (1:39.23) and 4x800 relay (8:56.75) both took first. Isaac Banker, Isaac Garside, Max Marohl and Dylan Springborn formed the 4x200, while William Beaumier, Colin Ewing, Carter Kurey and Jared Wondra ran the 4x800.

LaBerge, Brenna Hertzfeldt, Allaina Robaidek and Kylie Hoffman ran the girls 4x100 relay and took third in 2:00.98. Also placing third for the girls was Hoffman in the high jump (4-6) and Madison Kurey in the triple jump (31-03.25).

Taking third for the boys was Canaan Szoszorek in the discus (135-09) and shot put (45-10.25), Garside in the long jump (18-10.25) and Wondra in the 400 (55.84).

Girls team scores: 1. Oconto Falls 130; 2. Bonduel 97.5; 3. Sturgeon Bay 94.5; 4. Hilbert 92; 5. Kewaunee 90; 6. Algoma 64; T7. Lena/St. Thomas Aquinas Academy 36; T7. Coleman 36; 9. Seymour 31; 10. Oconto 12; 11. Wabeno 5; 12. Green Bay NEW Lutheran 2.

Boys team scores: 1. Oconto Falls 128; 2. Sturgeon Bay 122; 3. Kewaunee 101; 4. Seymour 94; 5. Bonduel 86; 6. Algoma 60; T7. Wabeno 38; T7. Hilbert 38; 9. Lena/St. Thomas Aquinas Academy 19; 10. Green Bay NEW Lutheran 9; 11. Coleman 3.

Clintonville girls second in New London

Behind several top finishes, the Clintonville girls scored 158.5 points to finish second in the Waupaca County Track Meet at New London High School on Saturday.

The girls team was led by first-place finishes from Allysin Booth in the 100 hurdles (16.57), Madison Hohn in the 300 hurdles (51.72), Elly Arndt in the high jump (5-2), Jennifer Peeters in the shot put (31-10) and Aeirell Mohr in the discus (90-7).

The girls 4x200 relay of Hohn, Elizabeth Weatherwax, Booth and Arndt took first in 1:53.62.

Placing second for the girls was Arndt in the 100 (13.02), Booth in the high jump (5-0) and long jump (15-07.75), Selina Torrez in the shot put (30-05), Emma Zwirschitz in the 100 hurdles (17.91) and Jasmine Wilson in the 1,600 (5:58.98) and 3,200 (13:07.99). Weatherwax came in third in the 800 (2:33.93).

The Clintonville boys 4x800 relay team of Jesse Wilson, Joseph Shelton, Joshua Wilson and Austin Tosdale placed second in 9:13.36.

Jesse Wilson placed second in the 1,600 (4:53.8) and third in the 3,200 (10:31.68).

Marion was also competing. The girls scored 17 points and took seventh while the boys team did not score.

Andi Elandt placed second in the discus (90-2) for the team’s top finish.

Girls team scores: 1. Weyauwega-Fremont 177; 2. Clintonville 158.5; 3. Manawa 123; 4. New London 102.5; 5. Iola-Scandinavia 44.5; 6. Waupaca 32.5; 7. Marion 17.

Boys team scores: 1. New London 196.5; 2. Waupaca 147.5; 3. Manawa 116.5; 4. Weyauwega-Fremont 89; 5. Clintonville 60.5; 7. Iola-Scandinavia 51.

Tigerton teams 2nd at Manawa Quad

Tigerton’s girls and boys teams each placed second at the Manawa Quad on Friday.

Monika Minniecheske had a big night to lead to Tigerton girls, placing first in the 100 hurdles (19.52), 300 hurdles (57.23), long jump (14 feet, 0.5 inches) and triple jump (30-5.5).

Mary Kreklow and Bethany Kreklow were the only two runners in the 1,600 and 3,200. Mary Kreklow was first in both events, finishing the 1-mile in 7:18.41 and 2-mile in 16:01.71 — Bethany Kreklow had times of 7:56.15 in the mile and 17:29.38 in the 2-mile.

Jared Berg placed third in the shot put (30-6) and came in fifth in the discus (88-8) for the Tigerton boys.

The Marion boys took third with 19 points, while the girls team tallied 12 points and finished fourth.

Justin Wuske claimed first in the boys 1,600 (5:39.18). The 4x100 team of Gavin Buss, Hunter Gretzinger, Ethan Pockat and Wuske took first in 50.27.

Placing second for the Marion girls was Andi Elandt in the discus (72-2) and Elizabeth Radtke in the 200 (30.23) and 100 (14.61).

The Wolf River Lutheran girls came in third with 21 points, while the boys scored 14 and took fourth.

Elizabeth Schmidt was second in the 300 hurdles (1:00.65) and 100 hurdles (19.58) for the girls. Dan Schmidt won the discus (123-5) and placed second in the shot put (35-3.5) for the boys.

Girls team scores: 1. Manawa 94; 2. Tigerton 66; 3. Wolf River Lutheran 21; 4. Marion 12.

Boys team scores: 1. Manawa 135; 2. Tigerton 20; 3. Marion 19; 4. Wolf River Lutheran 14.

Stone, Schairer pace Chargers at invite

Jenna Stone placed first in the 3,200 (12:43.53) and second in the 1,600 (5:53.59) to help the Wittenberg-Birnamwood girls take fourth at the Tri-County Invite on Thursday.

Cole Schairer finished first in the 1,600 (4:50.22) and 3,200 (10:43.4) to help the Witt-Birn boys to fifth place. He was also on the 4x400 relay team that took second in 3:52.48 — Jaydon Landowski, Luke Muscha and Simon Schairer rounded out the relay team.

Placing second for the W-B girls was Chloe King in the 100 (14.03) and 200 (28.88) and Lauren Dombeck in the 300 hurdles (53.82). Simon Schairer took second in the 800 (2:15.72) for the boys.

Girls team scores: 1. Wild Rose 154; 2. Weyauwega-Fremont 111; 3. Pittsville 95; 4. Wittenberg-Birnamwood 69; 5. Princeton/Green Lake 59; 6. Pacelli 54; 7. Amherst 53; 8. Tri-County 30; 9. Port Edwards 24; 10. Necedah 21; 11. Almond-Bancroft 8.

Boys team scores: 1. Wild Rose 212.5; 2. Weyauwega-Fremont 98.5; 3. Princeton/Green Lake 93; 4. Pacelli 63; 5. Wittenberg-Birnamwood 58; 6. Almond-Bancroft 47; 7. Amherst 42; 8. Tri-County 35; 9. Necedah 19; 10. Port Edwards 18; 11. Pittsville 7.


Full results from the invites can be found on and

Boys golf: Witt-Birn third at invite

Mon, 04/29/2019 - 3:29pm
Bonduel comes in fifth

Wittenberg-Birnamwood High School golfers posted a team score of 380 to place third at an invitational at Whistling Straits Golf Course on Thursday.

Ian Resch posted an 18-hole round of 87 to lead the Chargers and place fifth overall as an individual. Justin Keeney (93) and Maverick Beran (99) also posted scores under 100. Calvin Scheurer (101) and Logan Balliett (109) rounded out the five-golfer team.

Bonduel finished fifth as a team with a score of 434. Carter Siolka led the Bears with a round of 95, placing 12th as an individual.

Aaron Schaal fired a 106, while Rhett Hertzfeldt tallied a 114 and Cooper Uelman a 119. Brooks Dehn (128) rounded out the five-golfer team.

The Menominee Indian/Gresham co-op finished 10th with a team score of 476. Josh Hoffman tied for seventh as an individual with a round of 90 to lead the way.

Saswaen Shawanokasic (124), Gregory Turney (130), Johnny Kerry (132) and Shawn Fish (142) rounded out the team.

Marion took 11th as a team with a score of 499. Cody Clegg led the team with a 118.

Ellen Radies (125), McGregor Matz and Myles Peterson (128 each) and Mollie Schoen (144) capped the five-golfer team.

Team scores: 1. Mosinee 354; 2. Pacelli 356; 3. Wittenberg-Birnamwood 380; 4. Amherst 424; 5. Bonduel 434; 6. Shiocton 449; 7. Marathon 450; 8. Manawa 459; 9. Weyauwega-Fremont 460; 10. Menominee Indian/Gresham 476; 11. Marion 499.

Chargers have strong showings at home meet

All six Wittenberg-Birnamwood golfers that competed turned in nine-hole rounds of under 60 at the Wittenberg-Birnamwood Meet at Maple Hills Golf Course on Friday.

Ian Resch fired a team-leading 44, while Maverick Beran shot a 45. Calvin Scheurer (46), Justin Keeney (48), Brian Nelson (49) and Logan Balliett (57) also competed for the Chargers.

Marion also competed in the meet, with Cody Clegg’s 53 leading the way.

Ellen Radies (61), McGregor Matz and Myles Peterson (62 each), Isaiah Gueths (67) and Paige White (75) also competed for the Mustangs.

High School Highlights

Mon, 04/29/2019 - 3:28pm


Bonduel 10

Three Lakes 2

The Bears eased past the Bluejays in nonconference action Friday.

McKenzie Wollenberg led Bonduel at the plate with three hits and three runs scored. Halea Sporisky had two hits.

Taylor Luepke earned the win in the circle. She struck out eight batters, four of which came over the final two innings.

Marion 6

Tigerton 4

The Mustangs scored six runs in the fifth inning to top the Tigers in Central Wisconsin Conference-North Division play Friday.

Kendra Barrow struck out six batters while earning the win in the circle. Kyla Zillmer and Amiya Peterson each had three hits for the Mustangs, while Barrow, Tessa Brei and Bridget Bazile all had two hits.

Molly Brehm, Bethany Jobe and Colleen Smith all had two hits for Tigerton. Adrienne Brady was dealt the loss.

Luxemburg-Casco 13

Shawano 3 (5 inn.)

The Hawks issued 11 walks in a nonconference loss to the Spartans on Friday.

Shawano scored its three runs in the first inning. Abi Vomastic and Lauren Welander each had a RBI, while Kate Hoffman, Bayleigh Laabs and Taylor Johnson each scored once.

Johnson led the Hawks at the plate with two hits and also pitched two innings. Caitlin Daniel also pitched, while Emilee Bastar was dealt the loss after working 1 2/3 innings.

Mosinee 6

Clintonville 2

The Truckers dropped a nonconference tilt with Mosinee on Friday.

Allyson Schwietzer doubled twice to lead Clintonville at the plate.

Hannah Baird was dealt the loss in the circle. She struck out seven batters and did not issue a walk.

Bowler 11


Bowler held off a late charge by the Wisconsin Valley Lutheran/Northland Lutheran co-op in CWC-North play on Thursday.

Bowler scored nine runs in the third inning to go up 11-2. WVL/NL scored three in the sixth and four in in the seventh to nearly rally.

Tynea Johnson and Jada Waters each had two RBIs for Bowler, while Waters, Johnson, Kayla Pecore, Jodi Wolf and Alyssa Strassburg all had three hits. Waters earned the win, striking out six batters along the way.

Little Chute 10

Clintonville 0

The Truckers could not get their bats going in a North Eastern Conference loss to the Mustangs Thursday.

Sasha Carrillo tallied the only Clintonville hit. Hannah Baird took the loss in the circle.


Bonduel 6

Three Lakes 5

After a back-and-forth start to the game, the Bears held the Bluejays scoreless over the final four innings to claim the nonconference clash on Friday.

Joey Wagester earned the win, allowing just one run over four innings of work. Noah Beilfuss earned the save.

Riddik Bohm and Dylan Burch each had two hits for Bonduel. Aaron Margelosky and Wagester each drove in two runs.

Marion 7

Tigerton 2

The Mustangs pulled away for a CWC-North win over the Tigers on Friday.

Alex Zimmerman drove in two runs on three hits for Marion. Cayden Schoen scored three runs, while Carter Goke crossed the plate twice.

Goke earned the win after working 6 1/3 innings. Zimmerman got the other two outs.

Izaiah Hidde and Austin Hoffmann each scored for Tigerton. Isaac Schoen, Mitch Zimdars and Hoffmann all pitched. The trio combined for six strikeouts, but walked 10 batters.

Xavier 16

Shawano 4 (5 inn.)

Shawano lost the battle of the Hawks to Xavier on Friday.

Nick Grignon doubled and had two hits to lead Shawano at the plate. Zach Erdmann was tagged with the loss after pitching 2 1/3 innings.

Edgar 14

Witt-Birn 13

The Chargers dropped a high-scoring nonconference clash to the Wildcats on Friday.

Kody Szews drove in three runs, while Bryce Zoromski and Shane Herb each had two RBIs for Wittenberg-Birnamwood. Austin Worzalla scored three runs.

Will Urquhart took the loss after working 1 2/3 innings. Simon Stewart and Worzalla also pitched.

Bowler sweeps doubleheader

Bowler grabbed a pair of wins over CWC-North foe Wisconsin Valley Lutheran/Northland Lutheran on Thursday, winning game one 7-0 and game two 3-1.

In game one, Dylan Bierman drove in three runs, while Ezra Spencer had two RBIs for Bowler. Zach Fehrman struck out seven batters and pitched all five innings to earn the win.

Bierman drove in two more runs in game two, while Brock Strassburg had two hits and the other RBI. Logan Thiex earned the win after striking out eight batters over five innings.


New London 5

Shawano 1

The Hawks fell short in a Bay clash with the Bulldogs on Thursday.

Brianna Mott scored Shawano’s lone goal in the 60th minute.

Peyton Buerman made 23 saves while defending the net for the Hawks.

College Highlights

Thu, 04/25/2019 - 2:36pm

Wagner sixth in high jump

Shawano Community High School graduate and current UW-Whitewater freshman Atty Wagner earned his team four points after placing sixth in the high jump at the Augustana Meet of Champions that took place April 18 and 19.

Wagner cleared a height of 1.85 meters (6 feet, 0.75 inches). UW-Whitewater teammate Quinn Halversen cleared 2.05 meters (6-08.75) to take first.

The Whitewater men’s team scored 175 points to take first.

Stewart competes at La Crosse

Current UW-River Falls sophomore Allison Stewart, who competed for the Gresham/Bowler co-op in high school, ran the 100- and 200-meter dashes at the UW-La Crosse Phil Esten Challenge at Veterans Memorial Stadium on April 19.

In the 100, Stewart posted a time of 13.04 seconds and then 13.30 seconds. Stewart ran the 200 in 27.06 seconds and took 30th.

The UW-River Falls women came in 11th with 16 team points.

Pietz runs in California

Wittenberg-Birnamwood graduate and current Winona State freshman Paddy Pietz ran in both the Bryan Clay Invitational and Long Beach Invitational in California on April 19 and 20.

Pietz ran the 100 at the Bryan Clay Invitational, posting a time of 12.15 to take 47th. She came in 53rd at the Long Beach Invitational with a time of 12.39 in the 100.

She helped the Winona State 4x100 relay team take 14th at the Beach Invitational after posting a time of 47.54 seconds.

Zook continues to get on base

Shawano graduate and current Bryant and Stratton freshman Brianna Zook was not able to collect a hit in the team’s three games over the past week, but she still found a way to get on base.

Zook walked once in the team’s 17-1 loss to Madison College on April 20.

Zook walked and scored in Bryant and Stratton’s 9-4 victory over Morton College on Monday.

Pedersen takes advantage of opportunities

Bonduel graduate and current St. Scholastica freshman Kailee Pedersen was able to make her presence felt despite not starting.

In the team’s 10-2 win over Northland on Tuesday, Pedersen walked in a pinch-hit appearance.

Pedersen scored a run as a pinch-runner in the team’s 13-2 win over Northland on Wednesday.

Hoffman helps spark rally

Gresham graduate and current Edgewood College freshman Mackenzie Hoffman helped her team nearly rally from a three-run deficit in an eventual 3-2 loss to Marian on Monday.

Hoffman walked with one out in the bottom of the seventh inning before moving to second on a single and then got to third on a catcher’s interference.

Hoffman then scored on a single to bring Edgewood within one, but the next batter struck out to end the game.

Sports Briefs

Thu, 04/25/2019 - 2:34pm

Golf outing to support Toys 4 Tots

The Bullpen Bar in Pulcifer is hosting a golf outing on Saturday, May 11. Proceeds will go to Toys 4 Tots, which helps distribute toys to children whose parents cannot afford to buy Christmas presents.

The outing, set for May 11, is an 18 hole, four-person team scramble at Golden Sands Golf Course, 300 Nabor Road, Cecil. A 1:30 p.m. shotgun start is scheduled.

The cost is $45 per person, which includes 18 holes of golf, a cart and a steak dinner after — served at The Bullpen Bar, W2330 State Highway 22, Pulcifer. There will also be 50/50 and bucket raffles.

Call 715-745-2189 to reserve your spot, or with any questions.

Brian Butch basketball camp coming to Shawano

Brian Butch is bringing his basketball camp to Shawano this summer.

A boys camp will be held from 8-10 a.m., with the girls following at 10 a.m. to noon June 10-12.

Cost of the camp is $70 and interested athletes can register at

Free resources for fishing opener

As anglers are readying gear for the opening of the 2019 fishing season on May 4, they can add a free guide and downloadable app to their lures, lines and bobbers.

Wisconsin Sea Grant offers a downloadable four-page guide on selecting lure colors to increase the odds of reeling in a catch. The resource, “Selecting Lure Colors for Successful Fishing,” discusses how water depth and clarity, along with the level of light, influences how fish see colors.

Sea Grant also offers a popular “Fish ID” that is available via website and mobile app. It’s a photo-rich guide to what’s in the creel. To use the web version or download for Android devices, visit Sea Grant’s website —

After taking home the fishing bounty, check for recipes and tips on preparation and preservation.

North Star makes donation to Oshkeshequoam

Thu, 04/25/2019 - 2:33pm

Contributed Photo James Oshkeshequoam, left, receives a $750 check from North Star Mohican Casino Resort marketing director Brian Denny. Oshkeshequoam will be coaching in the Division 4 boys Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association All-Star Game and needed to raise at least $500 for the Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer Fund to participate.

North Star Mohican Casino Resort announced that it has made a $750 donation to the Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer in the name of Menominee Indian boys basketball coach James Oshkeshequoam.

Oshkeshequoam, who is one of the Division 4 boys All Star coaches, was selected to coach for the 2019 Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) All Star Games in Wisconsin Dells in June. The main goal of the event is to raise money to help fight the battle against childhood cancer. Every All Star participant must raise money in order to participate in the games.

“It is my goal to be the leading fundraiser for this longtime event in the state of Wisconsin and in helping fight against childhood cancer,” said Oshkeshequoam. “This is a great cause to support as the success rate of beating childhood cancer is now near 80%. We want to make that number 100%.”

All proceeds raised by All-Star participants will be pooled together for one large check presentation to the MACC (Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer) Fund and presented at halftime of the Milwaukee Bucks MACC Fund game. Since the All-Star Games started in 1978, the WBCA and its participants have raised over $2.8 million to donate to the MACC Fund.