Friday Night Blitz - December 9, 2016Submitted: 12/09/2016

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NORTHWOODS - Lakeland Union tops Antigo 81-59.

Rhinelander defeated Northland Pines 68-59.

Merrill held on 59-57 in a nail-biter over DC Everest.

Tomahawk defeats Crandon on the boys side 62-28, but the Crandon girls took down Laona/Wabeno 50-31.

Check out all the highlights and scores from around the area!

Story By: Mark Spillane

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RHINELANDER ICE ARENA - Rhinelander boys hockey hosted the Northland Pines Eagles Thursday evening. 

When we got there, the Hodags had a little bit of a surprising lead, 2-0.

One of many attempts for Pines here by Seigmeier.

A couple possessions later and another shot, this time by Sammy Spencer.

Time for a hard hit. Rhinelander's Logan Wild would end up in the box for that one.

The Hodags would make a few more attempts but the Eagles would come back and take this one 6-2.

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RHINELANDER - A new gymnast finds himself in the Northwoods, all the way from Germany.  

Oliver Ebrecht isn't used to being a gymnastics coach. He's used to being the gymnast, back in Germany.

"Sadly I got told that there's no boys gymnastics team. I still thought that I could maybe join this team and maybe coach or help them out and this is what I'm doing here now," said Ebrecht.

He has embraced his coaching position at Rhinelander High School.

"A team is working together and as a coach, I have to care about the team and manage what they do and help them," said Ebrecht.

Ebrecht is from Bavaria, Germany and is a foreign exchange student at Rhinelander High School this year.

"I'm from a 290,000 [person] city so this is quite new to me. It's new to live in a smaller city but the nature and the hunting is all really different,' said Ebrecht.

Coach Heather Sturtevant is happy to have Oliver's help.

"He's very outgoing, he's really jumped right in with the girls and being a part of our group," said Sturtevant.

But sometimes, things get lost in translation.

"Our big mat, he calls a mattress. So it was 'bring over the big mattress' and we said 'what?' and then 'oh, now we know what you mean'," said Sturtevant.

Once they know what he means, he then whips them into shape.

"He's really taking conditioning to a whole other level. He wants these girls to be really strong like he is. There's been days where he's said 'can I please have the girls for the last half hour?' and I've said 'have at it'," said Sturtevant.

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EAGLE RIVER - Northland Pines girls hockey dominated Medford by the score of 11-4.

The win moved the Eagles to 5-1 on the year.

They've also won both of their conference games so far.

Check out the highlight, and a look at the local boys and girls hockey teams so far this year!

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INDIANAPOLIS - Fans all across the Badger state waited anxiously for Saturday night's matchup with Penn State.

Some even took the trip down to Indianapolis to catch the action in person.

Newswatch 12 caught up with a few of them, and some said they expected nothing but a big victory for Wisconsin.

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INDIANAPOLIS - Behind many college athletes stand a supportive family.

After more than three months, some of those families had the chance to watch their sons play for a championship. 

Vince Biegel's parents know how important their support is. That support is even more important leading up to the Big Ten Championship Game.

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PRENTICE - Wisconsin high school sports experienced a first on Thursday night. The Prentice vs. Lake Holcombe boys basketball game tipped off at 7 p.m. Thursday evening with two female head coaches on the sidelines.

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MADISON - The NASCAR season wrapped up last weekend with Jimmie Johnson taking the championship. But Cambridge, Wisconsin, native Matt Kenseth now has time to come back home during the off-season.

Kenseth was in Madison yesterday at Smart Toyota to meet fans. That is one thing he enjoys about coming home for the holiday.

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IOWA CITY, IA - With a possible trip to the Big Ten championship game at stake, Nebraska fell flat.

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THREE LAKES - Wisconsin Badger basketball fans know their team plays old-school, fundamental hoops.

It's something of a lost art, but high school coaches hope to bring it back.

So Monday former Badger basketball standout Brian Butch offered to help, teaching kids in Three Lakes the skills he focused on as a kid.

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GREEN BAY - The Packers completed their second week of organized team activities this past week.

Green Bay is using some new drills too.

That's because the wide receiving squad has a new coach.

Luke Getsy is using bricks, Nerf balls, and juggling as tools for drills.

The Packers wide receiving core struggled last year.

Randall Cobb thinks the new mentality will help.

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GREEN BAY - The 2016 NFL Draft wrapped up Saturday.

The Green Bay Packers added seven players to their team:

Round one: Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA
Round two: Jason Spriggs, OT, Indiana
Round three: Kyler Fackrell, LB Utah St.
Round four: Blake Martinez, LB, Stanford; Dean Lowry, DE, Northwestern
Round five: Trevor Davis, WR, California
Round six: Kyle Murphy, OT, Stanford

The smallest player out of the group stands at 6'1"

Thompson says adding bulk was one of their goals.

"There are things you'd like to add to your team," says General Manager Ted Thompson. "Athletic ability, size, that sort of thing. We do think we were able to do that [Saturday]. You don't have to be big to play in the NFL, but it helps, and we were able to get some bigs on both sides of the ball."

It takes a lot of planning and focus to draft well, but Ted says the process is still far from over.

"It's easy to sit here and proclaim 'okay, everything's good,'" says Thompson. "Quite frankly, everything is just getting started. We've got an extraordinary amount of work and people to talk to and things to see over the course of the next 24-48 hours to get to the point where you start winding up the roster from the draft itself."

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MILWAUKEE - Adeiny Hechavarria had four hits, including one of four Miami solo home runs, to help the Marlins beat the Milwaukee Brewers 7-5 on Saturday night.

Giancarlo Stanton, Derek Dietrich and Marcell Ozuna also homered as Miami won its seventh consecutive game. It is the longest winning streak for Miami since it won seven consecutive games May 1-7, 2012. The Marlins are 12-11, the first time they have been over .500 since being 64-63 on Aug. 22, 2014.

Wei-Yin Chen (2-1) allowed three runs with two walks and four strikeouts one night after the team took a combined no-hitter into the ninth inning.

David Phelps pitched the ninth for his first save of the season.

Milwaukee starter Chase Anderson (1-3) had his third consecutive subpar outing, allowing six runs in just 4 1/3 innings.

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MILWAUKEE - Maikel Franco homered twice and Aaron Nola pitched seven strong innings as the Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 5-2 on Friday night.

The Phillies snapped a seven-game losing streak to the Brewers.

Franco hit a two-run home run in the fifth to give Philadelphia a 4-1 lead. He blasted a solo shot over the Brewers bullpen in left in the seventh to stake the Phillies to a four-run lead.

Nola (1-2) allowed four hits and retired 11 consecutive batters at one point and 16 of 17 to close out his outing.

Milwaukee starter Zach Davies (0-2) surrendered four runs and nine hits over six innings.

The Brewers took a 1-0 lead in the first on Chris Carter's run-scoring single. The Phillies tied the game in the fourth on Darin Ruf's RBI single.

The Brewers added a run in the ninth on consecutive doubles by Carter and Aaron Hill.

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ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI - Jaime Garcia pitched a one-hitter, allowing only Domingo Santana's lined single into right field with two outs in the sixth inning, as the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Milwaukee Brewers 7-0 Thursday.

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