WABENO - If you're looking for a team that's off to a great start this year, look no further than Laona/Wabeno. The Rebels got conference win number two on Friday with running back Tristian Immel leading the way.
"He's fast, he's a 4.6 type of runner, and when he comes the other way, he's quick," said Laona/Wabeno Head Coach Dan Moravec.
That speed helped Immel and the Rebels roll to a 52-0 win over Three Lakes/Phelps. That was thanks in large part to the senior's three touchdowns and 150 total yards, including one TD on a punt return.
"To win sometimes, if you get lucky to have a punt return, defense, interception here. All phases of the game have to win, and he does it all," said Moravec.
That play got the scoring started. And Immel says that's exactly what he was going for.
"I was thinking we've got to score here. It was 0-0 someone had to put points on the board. Nothing was going well on offense at first, and we had some good blocks on the left side," said Immel.
Then on offense Immel scampered for a slightly unconventional 33-yard touchdown run. First he tried the left side, but decided to turn back and head the other way for the score.
"That's not how we design it but if it works we'll take it once in a while," said Moravec. "That's a big momentum swing there."
Designed or not, those six points put the Rebels up by three scores. Immel, however, is quick to point out he's not the only one on the field.
"[My] offensive line, they're the best out there," said Immel. "[They are] the best in the conference."
That offensive line will get its biggest test yet on Friday when the Rebels face new conference foe Crivitz. Immel says he's looking forward to that challenge.
"It feels nice, new competition. It gets us ready for the playoffs," said Immel.
The playoffs are still a ways away but both Crivitz and Laona/Wabeno are undefeated in the new MONLPC Small division. Both schools look like contenders to be the league's inaugural champion.
ROSENDALE, WI - An explosion and fire at a cheese plant in Fond du Lac County sent one person to the hospital.
The sheriff's office says 36-year-old Travis Klotzbach, of Brandon, was using a cutting torch on an empty 55-gallon barrel in the auto shop at Knaus Cheese near Rosendale when the explosion happened just after 7 a.m. Friday.
RHINELANDER - Snow plows can't do their job very well when cars sit in their way. That's why Rhinelander's winter parking ban will return in just a couple of weeks.
Starting December 1st, cars can only park on designated sides of the street during the day. On even-numbered days, cars park on the side of the street with even addresses. On odd numbered days, cars must park on odd-numbered sides of the street.
UPDATE: The suspected shooter from a homicide in Tomahawk has been identified as Eric Lee Moen, 32. Tomahawk Police Chief Al Elvins confirmed Moen is being held in the Lincoln County Jail for a 1st-degree intentional homicide charge.
The Lincoln County Clerk of Courts reports Moen is being held on a $1 million cash bond. He has yet to appear in court, but an initial appearance has been set for Monday at 1:30 p.m.
Online court records show Moen was convicted of various traffic offenses. He was also convicted of misdemeanor battery in Portage County from a 2002 case.
Elvins plans to release more information Friday afternoon.
Tomahawk police identified the victim in the city's first shooting homicide in years. Friday morning, Police Chief Al Elvins announced Charles K. Ramp, 52, was shot and killed outside his home on W. Mohawk Drive Thursday night.
Police arrested the suspected shooter, a 32-year-old man from Wausau, but did not identify him. The suspect was found about 130 miles away in Lake Hallie, which is near Eau Claire.
RHINELANDER - The Rhinelander Salvation Army hopes to raise $40,000 in its bell ringing campaign again this year. It reached that goal during the holidays a year ago.
Volunteers kicked off the bell ringing drive at Trig's and Shopko on Friday. Eighty-six percent of money raised stays in the Rhinelander area to help families in emergencies.
"We're very excited that we're keeping our goal at 40 (thousand dollars) this year, and we're hoping that people are continuing to be generous in helping us reach that goal," Rhinelander Salvation Army Kettle Coordinator Kim Swisher said. "People are friendly, they're excited, they're like, 'Oh, it's bell ringing time!' [That] always means the holidays. We're excited about that."
You'll see volunteers at Trig's and Shopko through the holidays. Bell ringing starts at Walmart next week.
EAGLE RIVER - Americans eat more than 46 million turkeys on Thanksgiving Day. That much thawing, handling, and cooking of turkeys means people can make mistakes.
The Vilas County Public Health Department wants to help people avoid exposing themselves to dangerous bacteria. It says frozen turkeys should always be thawed in the refrigerator or under running water.
"You don't want to set them out on your countertop for any amount of time to thaw them because that's when they're going to be in the 'danger zone.' The 'danger zone' is between 40 and 140 [degrees Fahrenheit], and that's when pathogens can grow," said Vilas County Registered Sanitarian Amy Springer.
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