WAUSAU - Wausau West, Eau Claire North, Lakeland, Merrill, and Antigo scrimmaged in Wausau on Friday. High school football teams are cramming as much as they can during their last days of practice. The coaches agreed that it was a great opportunity for their players to get a taste of game speed. "We have a lot of young guys and that had to see how fast varsity football is," said Nick Sturm, the head coach at Merrill. "They got a taste of it today and I think it was an eye opening experience early on and I think they started catching up to the speed."
"Game speed is a lot different than practice speed," said Mike Mestelle, the head coach at Lakeland. "It takes you a few games to get up to that game speed and I think our guys responded to that challenge pretty well." The scrimmage included three teams from the Great Northern Conference. All three coaches believe the conference is anyone's to take. "I think it's going to be wide open this year," said Matt Weberpal, the head coach at Antigo. "I really do there aren't many returners starting." "I think its wide open," Sturm said. "There are a lot of good teams out there but they're young." "It's a wide open conference," Mestelle said. "We're excited, I think we have our best group we've had in four years." The teams will continue to put on their final touches before kick off on August 22nd.
RHINELANDER - If you did a double take driving down county highways this week, it was for good reason. Oneida County posted its weight limit restriction signs Monday. That's the earliest those signs have gone up in more than 15 years.
Usually weight limits go into effect in mid-March. Counties put them on to protect roads as frost comes out of the ground. Oneida County Highway Commissioner Bruce Stefonek tried to wait as long as possible.
MCALLEN, TX - U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan is visiting the Rio Grande valley for a firsthand look at the U.S.-Mexico border as the Trump administration steps up immigration enforcement and prepares to ask Congress to pay for a border wall.
It's the first time the Wisconsin Republican has visited the border, and protests have been announced to meet his arrival in McAllen, Texas, on Wednesday.
ONEIDA COUNTY - If your truck cracks through the ice, your first thought might be, "get off ASAP."
There are workers who head the opposite way--onto the ice to help.
That describes one local team who carefully went to work on the Willow Flowage in Oneida County in Little Rice on Tuesday.
"This ain't no joke out here," said Tom Quandt, Jr., the owner of Bulldog Off-Road Recovery Service. "I do get nervous, and today's a day I'm nervous because of the ice conditions."
That nervous energy is what likely helps Quandt and his crew carefully cross the ice and get sunken vehicles back above water level.
It's not easy. Quandt and his crew set nerves aside, driving in a bombardier about two miles off the shore on Willow Dam Road to get to the truck, which was near an island.
"I was looking at the ice," Quandt says as he describes the drive out to the car. "I was looking for holes in the ice, I was looking for the color of the ice...There was water coming up out of spots as we were driving out here."
The crew tried a few times to get the truck back on safer ice, but the car fell through again. The crew then decided to drill a trench to a nearby island and pull the car out that way.
"We can sit and play that game all day and it's not going to get us anywhere without a lot of time and labor into this," Quandt said.
The team got the car out and onto the island around 1 a.m. Wednesday.
Quandt said the owner of the car may try to tow his truck back to shore later this week.
The DNR is aware of the situation. By state statute, you have 30 days to remove your car from the ice or get a fine.
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