Pokrandt's big moment highlights Hodags' runaway winSubmitted: 02/06/2014

Ben Meyer
Executive Producer

RHINELANDER - Years from now, players, coaches, and fans in Rhinelander might not remember the
Hodags' 23-point boys basketball win over Tomahawk Thursday night.

They're unlikely to forget one specific play.

David Pokrandt, a three-year manager for the Hodags, suited up for Rhinelander
and drained a three-pointer in the final minute of the game.

"The guys love to have him around, and we love having him as part of our team,"
Hodags coach Derek Lemmens said after the win.

Rhinelander players and the Hodags student section mobbed Pokrandt in
celebration after the game.

"That's what adds to it, the fact that so many other people are that excited.
It's just special that there's that kind of support out there," Lemmens said.

Hitting the shot on his third attempt, Pokrandt gave the Hodags the final
winning margin.

Prior to that, Rhinelander overcame sluggish stretches to improve to 12-4
overall and remain unbeaten at 9-0 in Great Northern Conference play.

On paper, the matchup against a Tomahawk team winless in league play and without
leading scorer Jared Jarvensivu appeared to be a formality. Indeed, the Hodags
jumped to a 18-6 lead in the first quarter.

But the Hatchets put in the final four points of the quarter, and matched
baskets in the second to stay within eight at halftime.

"I thought the effort was a little inconsistent, and that hurt us. Offensively,
I felt like we were forcing a lot of things. It just had a strange flow
tonight," Lemmens said.

Junior Jordan Roessler was the catalyst for the Hatchets in the first half,
scoring 14 of the team's first 16 points on his way to a 19-point evening.

"Very nice player. I haven't been able to really see him, and he caught us by
surprise," Lemmens said.

After halftime, however, Rhinelander became near-impenetrable defensively.
Tomahawk couldn't manage a field goal for nearly six minutes to start the half.

"The intensity picked up and the consistent effort picked up," Lemmens said.

Taking a 15-point lead to the fourth, the Hodags cruised to the finish.

Mitch Reinthaler led Rhinelander with 19 points and displayed the ability to
finish with the left hand.

"There's no way to play him. You can't force him left or anything like that,
because he's very comfortable going left. It makes him that much harder to
guard," said Lemmens.

Ryan Dart had 12, and Colton Volkmann completed the trio of Hodags in double
figures with ten. But the undisputed player of the night was Pokrandt.

Entering the game with roughly a minute left, the Hatchets allowed him to snap
off three attempts from long range. He drained the third.

"Tomahawk went out of their way without us even saying anything to give him a
moment he'll never forget. It's just an absolute class act by Tomahawk,"
Lemmens said.

The Hodags return to the floor immediately to face second-place Mosinee on
Friday night. The Indians have turned heads on their way to a spot near the top
of the conference.

"Any time you have a good guard, and you have solid role players, you can do
some very good things. They have surprised a lot of people, including myself,"
Lemmens said.

Rhinelander and Mosinee tip at 7:30pm at the Jim Miazga Community Gymnasium.
Adam Matyska will have the play-by-play call starting at 7:10pm on

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com


Play Video

RHINELANDER - A Marathon County man who drove to Rhinelander to meet up with a 15-year-old girl for sex told police he nearly turned around.

Instead, Dustin Zernicke pulled into the Shopko parking lot Friday night and found officers waiting for him.

The 35-year-old Zernicke made his initial appearance in Oneida County Court Monday afternoon.  Undercover officers posted an ad on Craigslist pretending to be a 15-year-old girl.  The post said "Mom sent me [to] Rhinelander for the weekend and I have nothing to do."

+ Read More

Play Video

WISCONSIN - This year marks the third highest bear harvest in state history.

The totals cement Wisconsin's title as the best state in the U.S. for bear harvests with 4,643 registered.

But it wasn't all good news for bear hunters. 

This year also marked the highest number of hunting dog deaths.

+ Read More

MINOCQUA - The Minocqua Town Board always knew it would need to replace Supervisor Bryan Jennings eventually. But the Board didn't think it happen so soon.

Jennings died September 8, two days after he was struck by lightning while walking his dog.

Town Chairman Mark Hartzheim says the Town is now accepting letters of interest from anyone wanting to fill Jennings's seat.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - We likely won't find out who Rhinelander's next police chief will be until early next year.  But the city is already working to replace Chief Mike Steffes.

Newswatch 12 learned earlier this month Chief Steffes is leaving Rhinelander to take a job with the Department of Justice.

Steffes beat out 34 other candidates to win the chief job in 2007.  Police and Fire Commission President Todd McEldowney expects to see dozens of new applicants this time.

+ Read More

WAUSAU - This fall Wausau's Woodson Art Museum will bring together artists from all over the world. 

The Birds in Art exhibit gives artists an opportunity to share a piece of themselves with their audience.

+ Read More
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 10/24/2016

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

We'll update you on the details of a fatal car crash in the Town of Stella that took the life of a teenager late Saturday night.

This year marks the third highest bear harvest in state history. But it also marked the highest number of hunting dog deaths. No one knows for sure why, but we'll tell you about some possible reasons.

And the Elcho-White Lake High School football team agreed to play an 8-man football game against a nearby high school's team. We'll tell you how it's helping out the nearby team.

We'll bring you the details on these stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

+ Read More

Play Video

MERRILL - The Merrill Fire Department sees the need for more, younger EMTs to get into the business. Like other area departments, it wants to ensure its staff will stay strong for years into the future.

People like Dylan Schielke can help make that happen.

+ Read More
+ More General News

Click Here