Athlete of the Week: Mitchell Stegeman

Suring’s Mitchell Stegeman dunks the ball against Wabeno/Laona in a game on Friday, Nov. 30. Stegeman is hoping to lead the Eagles to a strong season this winter. (Contributed photo)

Athlete: Mitchell Stegeman

Sport: Boys Basketball

School: Suring High School

Year: Senior

Despite losing the school’s all-time leading scorer, the Suring High School boys basketball team still believes it can compete for a Marinette & Oconto Conference outright title after sharing the crown with Coleman and Crivitz last year. A big part of the team’s plan to reach that goal is the play of senior Mitchell Stegeman.

Stegeman made the all-conference second team a season ago and is hoping to have an even bigger season this winter to help lead the Eagles to all of their team goals.

Q: When did your interest in basketball begin?

A: My interest I basketball began when I wad about four and my parents got me a Fisher Price mini basketball hoop that we put in our living room.

Q: What’s your favorite part about a basketball game or the basketball season?


Oconto Falls wrestlers hang tough in loss to Freedom

With some young wrestlers hitting the mat for their first varsity experience, Oconto Falls tri-head coach Marc Kinziger didn’t know exactly what to expect.

That’s especially true since the Panthers were taking on perennial state power Freedom.

“The coaching staff kind of looking at each other like, hey, we did a little bit better than we thought we would,” Kinziger said. “We thought the guys wrestled really good. In a way, inexcusable not to fill all the weight classes.”

Oconto Falls left three open weight classes — surrendering 18 free points — as Freedom went on the road to pull off a 41-23 victory in a Northeastern Conference dual on Thursday, Nov. 29.

The Panthers won five of the 11 contested matches and got bonus points in three of those matches.


High school wrestling: Low roster numbers won’t slow down local teams

Oconto Falls’ Tyler Budz, right, wrestles in a triple dual match against Denmark last season. Budz is hoping to make it back to state after qualifying two seasons ago. (Times Herald file photo)

Numbers are a little down for wrestling programs in northeastern Wisconsin.

However, that’s not going to stop the Oconto Falls, Gillett/Suring and Lena/St. Thomas Aquinas teams from mixing it up on the mat this season.

Oconto Falls

Annually, Oconto Falls generally qualifies three to four individuals for the state meet. Last season was an anomaly with just senior Dan Ausloos making it to Madison.

Panthers tri-head coach Marc Kinziger hopes to get a few more of his wrestlers to state in 2018-19.

With the loss of four valuable seniors, Oconto Falls is young and small. He has a number of guys who project in weight classes 106 through 120 but not many guys 195 pounds or heavier. Kinziger might have three 106-pounders vying for time.


Gillett’s Bo Krueger makes All-Region Team

Gillett’s Bo Krueger runs during the team’s game against Menominee Indian early in the football season. Krueger was recently named to the WFCA All-Region Team. (Times Herald file photo)

Add another honor for Gillett High School standout football player Bo Krueger.

The Tigers’ running back was recently named to the Wisconsin Football Coaches Association All-Region Team after finishing his junior season with 1,255 yards and 22 touchdowns on the ground.

“Being named the All-Region Team is a great honor and, yeah, it keeps me motivated because that means I still need improvement,” Krueger said. “Next year, my goal is to reach the All-State Team.”

Krueger was a force whenever he touched the ball, also hauling in two receiving touchdowns and adding three scores on kickoff returns.

Earlier in the offseason, Krueger was tabbed as one of four offensive players in the MONLPC-8.


High school basketball: Experienced Oconto Falls ready for tough NEC slate

Suring’s Mitch Stegeman, right, attempts to drive past Gillett’s Anthony Carroll in a game last season. Suring hopes to compete for the Marinette & Oconto Conference crown again, while Gillett hopes to surprise teams with their experienced roster under new head coach Russ Long. (Times Herald file photo)

While some high school boys basketball conferences graduated several all-conference players from a season ago, the same cannot be said about the North Eastern Conference. Of the 24 all-conference selections, only six were seniors.

Like much of the conference, Oconto Falls High School will return much of its starting lineup to the court this winter and believes it can be competitive with some of the conference’s best.

“We are experienced and have added some depth,” Oconto Falls coach Kirk Hirst said. “We should compete again in our conference, which is very good top to bottom. We will battle and compete with every team in our conference.”

A year ago, the Panthers turned in a 5-19 record on the season and 3-15 mark in the NEC to finish second to last.


Kelly Logue returns as Pulaski soccer coach

Kelly Logue has been hired to serve as girls soccer coach at Pulaski High School, a job she held from 2000-2004. (Contributed photo)

Kelly Logue is taking over the head Pulaski High School girls soccer coaching position, a job she previously held from 2000-2004 but left to raise her family.

In the meantime, she’s taught soccer as part of her job as a physical education teacher at Pulaski Community Middle School and in local rec programs.

Logue takes over from Clete Gerhartz, who held the position five years and led the team to several trips to the WIAA state tournament.

“We are excited to have Kelly Logue take over as our head girls soccer coach at Pulaski,” said PHS athletic director Janel Batten. “She has been both a head coach and an assistant in the program in prior years and has great perspective and a clear direction to move the program forward.”

Logue, a Mayville native, was a student-athlete at Carroll University, where she played basketball one year and soccer four years while earning an education degree with an emphasis on physical education.


High school sports results


Gillett 44, Wittenberg-Birnamwood 33

Aubrey DeBauch posted her second straight double-double, finishing with 15 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Tigers over the Chargers on Nov. 15.

Sydney Young added eight points while Camryn Long had six for Gillett, which improved to 2-0 on the young season.

The Tigers outscored the Chargers 26-14 in the second half after trailing by a point at halftime.

Suring 41, Rosholt 34

The Eagles led by 13 points at halftime before easing past the Hornets on Nov. 15.

Wylee Van Bellinger led Suring with 11 points, all in the first half. She hit all three of her team’s 3-pointers.

Kylee Stelzer chipped in 10 points, six of which came at the free-throw line. Suring made eight of 12 free throws in the contest.

Gillett 62, Weyauwega-Fremont 50

Gillett outscored Weyauwega-Fremont by 10 in the second half to claim its first win of the season Nov. 13.


Girls basketball: Panthers hoping experience translates to success

Suring’s Kylee Stelzer drives to the basket against Gresham last year. Stelzer made the Marinette & Oconto Conference second team last season. (Times Herald file photo)

Having an experienced team at any level of play can be recipe for success. The Oconto Falls High School girls basketball team is hoping their immense amount of varsity experience can propel them to a strong season in the North Eastern Conference.

A year after finishing 7-16 overall and 5-13 in conference play, the Panthers will return nine players who gained varsity experience last season.

Seniors Emma Huberty and Sammie Shallow will fill out the guard positions in the starting lineup, while juniors Kari Albrecht, Morgan Helmle and Natalie Brauer are the starting forwards.

While the lineup will be experienced, without much height, it could have trouble defending other teams’ bigs.

“We are an experienced team but have to overcome our lack of size and quickness with effort,” coach Mike Kaczmarek said.

Seniors Katelyn Albrecht and Kaelyn Albrecht and sophomores Mikaela Goebl and Amelia Rice all have experience off the bench for Oconto Falls.


Russ Long hired as Gillett boys hoops coach

Russ Long was hired as the new Gillett boys basketball coach. (Contributed photo)

The Gillett boys basketball varsity head coaching position has been a revolving door.

The Tigers will have their sixth person at the helm in the last seven seasons. Russ Long is looking to bring stability to the program.

“We’ve had quite a few coaches who have come through and done one season coaching and left,” Long said. “I know the kids. I’ve been coaching a lot of these kids since they were in youth, and I have a pretty good rapport with them. I thought I’d come on in and see what I can do.”

Long, who was the junior varsity coach for the past three years, takes over for Kelly Willson who went 10-36 during his two seasons.


Well-placed trail camera helps sports editor go viral

This screenshot from the trail camera video shows the eight-point buck watching sports editor Morgan Rode and his brother walk to their evening hunting spots. (Contributed photo)

As the video file uploaded, I texted my brother, Sawyer, “You ready to go viral, lil’ bro?”

Little did I know how true those words would become in just a matter of hours.

When I am not covering a sporting event or writing up a story, one of my favorite things to do is be out in the hunting woods.

Living over two hours away from the grounds I hunt in western Wisconsin, I’ve come to appreciate trail cameras quite a bit. Trail cameras can be vital tools in learning the behaviors and patterns of a white-tailed deer, but a week ago, I learned how heartbreaking scrolling through some of the photos and videos can be.

After spending several hours in the woods with my brother Nov. 3-4, I returned back to Shawano on the morning of Nov. 5 for the work week. After seeing a fair share of deer activity — but no bucks to my knowledge — I again pondered where to sit in order to put myself in a better position to harvest a mature buck this year.


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