Newswatch 12 POW nominees Feb 17Submitted: 02/17/2014
Story By Joe Dufek

- Plenty of great performances to choose from. Here are this week's nominees for the Newswatch 12 Player of the Week.


In girls basketball, Elcho's Makayla Raith notched a double-double against Phelps on Friday. 21 points, 10 rebounds in the Lady Hornets' victory.


In wrestling, Crandon's Morgan Krueger won the 132 pound title at the D-3 regional in Three Lakes last weekend. Krueger is (35-0). Crandon won the team title.


In boys swimming, Nate Kellner is headed to state for the second straight year in the boys 50 yard free style. Kellner won the section crown last weekend. He's also a member of Lakeland's 200 and 400 yard freestyle relays - which will also compete in Madison.


Back to girls basketball, Merrill's Renee Sladek reached the 1,000 point plateau Friday night at Wausau East. Sladek finished with 20 points as the Bluejays won.

To vote on the nominees, go to the sports poll at wjfw.com. Voting ends at 3pm on Friday. The winner will receive a plaque.

Rhinelander's David Pokrandt was last week's winner.

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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."

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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