Crandon wrestling powers through low roster numbersSubmitted: 01/23/2019

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CRANDON - The past few years Crandon sent at least two state wrestlers state.

That could very much happen again this year, but the team graduated five seniors and got a new coach.

"We've had to overcome quite a few challenges," said first year head coach Mark Seils. 

The biggest challenge for Crandon's wrestling team has been the low roster numbers.

The Cardinals have only been able to fill seven to ten spots on a 14-man lineup.

"I went to the boys this year and told them that the philosophy this year was going to be: get matches," Seils said.

Coach Seils says every single wrestler has had to step up at least two weight classes just to be able to wrestle.

"Eat, sleep and breathe wrestling. I think about it almost 24 hours a day," said senior wrestler Jakob Hoyt.

Hoyt is working towards his second appearance at the tournament.

And his name on the Crandon wrestling wall of fame.

"I look up at that wall over there, the wall of fame. I look at that and it gets me more focused," Hoyt said.

He's not the only one.

"The goal this year is to be better at state," said state returner Breed Shepard Jr.

Breed Shepard Jr. joined Hoyt at last year's state tournament. He says moving up a weight class actually improved his routine.

"I am able to eat and drink and hydrate as much as I want," said Shepard Jr.

Shepard Jr. just won most outstanding wrestler at a Fox Valley tournament, where the team took fourth place too.

"They aren't afraid of anyone so that's been the biggest step forward with these kids," Seils said.

That step forward led to four conference victories and big tournament placings from across the state.

"We may have a little team but these are some of the hardest working guys I know in the conference," Hoyt said. "We may be in the Northern Lakes conference, in a small town in an easy conference but we all take that to heart and it just makes us work harder."

Crandon hosted a youth tournament this past weekend and Coach Seils said it was a huge success.
He said the future of the program will remain strong because of everyone's hard work. The Cardinals will face Crivitz next Tuesday in Crandon. 

Story By: Mazie Vincent

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Local Sports Report: 1/22/19Submitted: 01/22/2019

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MINOCQUA - Lakeland girls basketball defeated Northland Pines, 76-37.

Lakeland girls hockey topped Medford, 10-2.

Elcho's Mac Morrison and Merrill's Quinn Steckbauer both scored their 1,000th point.

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MERRILL - Every good basketball team needs someone to lean on when times are tough.

For the Merrill Bluejays, that's point guard Quinn Steckbauer.

"You have to be resilient and you have to keep working when times are tough," Steckbauer said.

Leading the team is nothing new for Steckbauer, who suited up as quarterback when the Jays needed one this year.

"He's so competitive that he'll do whatever it takes to help the team win," head coach Jake Schalow said. "The football coaches thought that that would be the best to move him over to the quarterback position."

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EAGLE RIVER - Bob Richardson used to sit behind the wheel of a snowmobile, but he isn't interested in winning championships anymore, at least not for himself.

"Now our goal is to get our racers who are owning our chassis to win a world championship," Richardson said.

Richardson owns Eagle Outlaw Chassis in St. Germain, which makes modified snow vehicles called outlaws.

He says he's the only one in America that makes outlaws ready to order every year.

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Friday Night Blitz 1.18.19Submitted: 01/18/2019

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New London 86 Lakeland Union 67
Antigo 62 Northland Pines 69
Mosinee 70 Rhinelander 69
Three Lakes 57 Phelps 69
Stratford 75 Abbotsford 37
Newman Catholic 36 Phillips 69
Assumption 48 Rib Lake 69
Wausau East 74 Merrill 77
Wisconsin Rapids 58 Wausau West 40
Marshfield 54 Stevens Point 53



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GREEN BAY, WIS. (AP) -  Detroit Lions kicker Matt Prater lined up for a field goal but seemed a little antsy, gesturing with his arms like a quarterback calling for a shotgun snap.

It turns out that was exactly what it was.

Prater's 8-yard pass on a fake field-goal try was a high and a little wobbly, but Levine Toilolo was so wide open in the end zone that it didn't matter.

The Lions' beleaguered season ended on a high note on Sunday, when almost everything went right for Detroit in a 31-0 win over the Green Bay Packers.

"Basically I was trying not to screw it up," Prater said. "It worked out, so it was fun."

Not so much for the Packers (6-9-1), who trailed 21-0 at the half and lost Aaron Rodgers early in the second quarter after to a concussion. The quarterback was sacked and lost his helmet on the second play of the game.

Rodgers played two more series before departing. The offense never got going even when he was behind center.

"Yeah, it was hard. We just didn't have any rhythm," interim head coach Joe Philbin said.

Both teams had long been eliminated from playoff contention. But the Lions (6-10) at least got a little positive push at the end of Matt Patricia's first season as coach.

Matthew Stafford threw for 266 yards and two scores, both to T.J. Jones . Zach Zenner had a 13-yard touchdown run for the Lions, who have won four straight against their NFC North rival for the first time since 1982-83. That was one bright spot for a last-place Detroit team.

"I think those guys fought all year. I think they're tough " mentally and physically tough," Patricia said. "It showed up in the game today."


The Lions' passing game clicked despite a depleted receiving corps, with Kenny Golladay missing the relatively meaningless game with a chest injury. The Lions had decisive edges in total yards (261-67) and first downs (16-3) by halftime, with 11 of the first downs coming through the air.

Zenner finished with 93 yards on 21 carries. Stafford was 20 of 32, while rookie Brandon Powell had six catches for 103 yards

"It was an opportunity for them and obviously it was a big stage," Stafford said about working with the young receivers. "Not an easy day to catch the football, wind swirling, cold, Lambeau Field."


Prater's touchdown pass gave the Lions a 14-0 lead with 10:36 left in the second quarter.

"Slow delivery, lollipop, but it was on target so that was a plus," Stafford joked when asked about the kicker's throw.


Rodgers walked back to the locker room around the same time his teammates were getting over the shock of Detroit's trick play.

It was unclear exactly when Rodgers got hurt. He was 3 of 5 for 26 yards, not the way he wanted to finish even in a meaningless game.

"I said, 'How long are you playing?' He said, 'I'm going the distance,'" linebacker Clay Matthews said, recounting a pregame talk with Rodgers. "I said, 'All right, I'll be out there with you in the fourth.' But it didn't play out like that."

The Packers were also without receiver Davante Adams, who missed practice this week with a knee injury. Adams finished the season with 111 catches, one shy of tying the single-season franchise record set by Sterling Sharpe in 1993.

Backup DeShone Kizer finished 16 of 35 for 132 yards and an interception, while Jamaal Williams managed just four yards on eight carries.

Green Bay didn't top 100 yards in total offense until the third quarter.


There is uncertainty in Titletown following a second straight losing season and the firing of coach Mike McCarthy in early December. Philbin, the offensive coordinator, went 2-2 as interim coach.

When asked when he would interview for a chance to take the job permanently, Philbin deferred any questions to team president Mark Murphy, who is leading the search.

Rodgers and Adams have each voiced support over the past couple weeks for Philbin.

"I was very appreciative of all the things they did all season and in the four weeks that I was leading them," Philbin said in recounting his postgame message. "And that we would get together tomorrow, we're going to have a brief team meeting tomorrow and we'll go from there."

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MILWAUKEE - National television, overtime thriller, century-old rivalry. This year's Marquette-Wisconsin game had it all; an electric atmosphere, a national TV audience and overtime. 

Sam and Joey Hauser, two kids from Stevens Point, were right in the middle of it.

"Just growing up in the state of Wisconsin, everybody's a Badger fan, so me and Sam were really happy to get this win," Joey Hauser said.

Sam and Joey played important roles in Marquette's 74-69 win over the Wisconsin Badgers.

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GREEN BAY - The Green Bay Packers fired head coach Mike McCarthy after 13 seasons in the wake of the team's 20-17 loss to the Arizona Cardinals.

"The 2018 season has not lived up to the expectations and standards of the Green Bay Packers," said team CEO Mark Murphy in a statement. "As a result, I made the difficult decision to relieve Mike McCarthy of his role as head coach, effective immediately."

Offensive coordinator Joe Philbin has been promoted to interim head coach.

McCarthy went 125-77-2 in his time as head coach of the Packers, including a Super Bowl championship in 2010.

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MINNEAPOLIS - Kirk Cousins bounced back from his worst game for Minnesota with 342 passing yards and three touchdowns without a turnover, and the Vikings overcame some early gaffes to outlast the depleted Green Bay Packers for a 24-17 victory on Sunday night.

Completing 29 of his 38 attempts, Cousins found Dalvin Cook, Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen for scores. Sheldon Richardson had two sacks to lead the defense's game-long stifling of Aaron Rodgers, and the Vikings (6-4-1) pushed the Packers (4-6-1) further back in the NFC wild card race.

Rodgers threw a touchdown pass to Davante Adams and Aaron Jones scored on a short run for a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter, but the Packers fell to 0-6 on the road and 1-5-1 against the Vikings in their last seven meetings.

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