- Oh so close. The Wisconsin Badgers finished just short of playing in the national championship game on Monday night.
Wisconsin fell to Kentucky Saturday night 74-73.
Wisconsin's improbable run to the Final Four is over.
But it was a great season for not only the Badgers, but the fans too.
The biggest beneficiary could be high school basketball in the Northwoods and state-wide.
"When we talk about a high school team goes far in the playoffs - it gets all those little boys shooting, dribbling, and aspiring to greatness," Lakeland coach Rich Fortier explains. "It think watching (Wisconsin Head Coach) Bo (Ryan) do this, it helps in recruiting. It gets boys out playing basketball. It gets us thinking about basketball for another week and maybe longer."
Brad Soderberg was an assistant with the Badgers during their 2000 Final Four run. His brother Kurt is the boys coach at Merrill. The Soderbergs are from Stevens Point.
"I think what is the point of Bo Ryan's teams is they don't beat themselves," Soderberg adds. "Once the nerves become an issue playing in bigger stadiums and tougher competition - the first thing you have to overcome is foolish mistakes. I don't think Bo Ryan's teams beat themselves. That's why they were on such a roll."
A dozen of the 16 players on the Badgers roster were from the Midwest. Six played high school basketball in Wisconsin.
GRAND CHUTE - An officer is injured and two suspects are in custody after one man stole a squad car in Grand Chute.
The incident happened Saturday night as police were investigating two theft suspects at Pawn America. One of the men got into an officer's K9 squad car, with the dog inside, and backed into another officer's squad car, injuring that officer.
The man then fled and responding officers fired shots at the vehicle, hitting him. He then left the squad car and took another vehicle from a woman, who was not hurt. The man was ultimately arrested and treated for his injuries.
The K9 was not injured.
The other theft suspect sneaked away from Pawn America and called a taxi. He was arrested while he was in the cab.
MERRILL - Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said he didn't want to spend too much time at the Republican National Convention last week because he wanted to get back to campaigning in his home state.
The senator from Oshkosh stopped at the Lincoln County Fair on Saturday.
He faces a tight races against former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis).
Johnson gave a speech on Tuesday in Cleveland about national security, as he is the chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security.
He seems pleased with the Republican presidential ticket.
"I think it's really complimentary to the skills Donald Trump brings to the table," Johnson said. "You got Donald Trump with the private sector experience. You got Mike Pence with a real record accomplishment both in the House and as the governor of Indiana. I think it's a pretty good pairing."
He said he wouldn't pay too much attention to the speeches at the Democratic National Convention this week.
"They've got their ticket, we've got our ticket," Johnson said. "They'll make a bunch of promises they can't deliver on. And what we're going to focus on is economic growth, strengthen our economy so we can strengthen our military, so we can defeat ISIS and secure our borders."
SHAWANO COUNTY - UPDATE 5:13 p.m.--Police say six people, including children, were taken to area hospitals after two sport utility vehicles carrying Boy Scouts crashed in Shawano County.
The accident happened Saturday morning on Highway 29 near Bonduel.
Police say one of the SUVs was towing a trailer with equipment. The driver of that vehicle went off the roadway then overcorrected and lost control. The second SUV hit the first, and both went off the road. The trailer flipped and the second SUV landed partially on top of the first.
Bonduel police Chief Todd Chaney tells the Green Bay Press Gazette that one of the injured, a troop leader, was airlifted to St. Vincent's Hospital in Green Bay with a head injury.
Chaney said he didn't think any of the injuries were life threatening.
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