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FEATURED STORY
Johnson at No. 4 singles earns sectional title
By Cassie Krueger - Posted on 05/26/2016
Photo By HodagSports.com Staff
Although the Rhinelander High School boys' tennis team did not advance any players to the 2016 WIAA state tournament, they were able to earn a sectional championship title at No. 4 singles with sophomore Markus Johnson.

On Wednesday at the Green Bay Tennis Club, Johnson became the first sectional champion since 2008 when Rahul Jain claimed it and also qualified for state.

Despite winning the sectional title and finishing with a 23-3 record, only the top four finishers in the No. 1 flight and sectional champ at No. 2 flight claim automatic bids to state. Rhinelander had no automatic qualifiers which not give Johnson the chance to compete at the WIAA state tournament.

Starting the day, Johnson defeated the No. 1 seed from the West De Pere sectional, Jackie Zablocki 6-4, 6-1.

With the win, Johnson then had to face Steven Fredeen of Green Bay Southwest in the finals, who he previous fell to this season. But Johnson pushed through strong to earn a 6-1 first set win. Fredeen battled strong in the beginning of the second and took a 3-2 lead, before Johnson rallied back for the 6-4 victory. 

Junior Logan Wild, who also qualified for sectionals for the Hodags fell in the first round which eliminated his chance at punching a ticket to state. Wild fell 6-0, 6-0 to freshman Nathan Balthazor of De Pere at No. 1 singles. Balthazor was seeded 11th for the 2016 State tournament that will begin on Thursday in Madison.

It was a learning experience that Coach Bob Heideman expects Wild to use to his advantage for his senior season. And the Hodags ended their season with a great accomplishment with Johnson earn a sectional champion. 

Hodag Tennis advances 2 to sectionals
By Cassie Krueger - Posted on 05/26/2016
Photo By HodagSports.com Staff
The Rhinelander High School boys' tennis team had two players extend their 2016 season to advance to the WIAA Division 1 Bay Port subsectionals. Logan Wild and Markus Johnson earned their way back to Green Bay Wednesday after getting through their matches at the Western Racquet and Four Season Tennis Clubs.

Wild at No. 1 singles, was able to recover after falling in his first set 4-6 to Dylan Sundin of Bay Port. With some adjustments and consistency, Wild rallied his way back to took the second set 7-5 to force a third tie breaker set. And remaining focused, Wild closed out the match with a 6-3 third-set win.

Johnson had to earn two match wins to advance at No. 4 singles. His first match over Dylan Tousey resulted in a convincing straight-set win 6-1, 6-3. Johnson’s most contested match was his second against Bailey Miller of Baby Port. But Johnson knocked Miller off with another straight set win, 6-4, 6-4.

It a great improvement for the team, as last season the Hodags did not win a set in the 2015 subsectionals. Rhinelander was seeded in six of the seven flights to start their day off. Overall RHS used five match wins to finish fifth of the seven team subsectional.

Green Bay Southwest swept the top team position and scored 24 points. Wausau East claimed second with 14 points. While Wausau West and Bay Port tied for third. Rhinelander in fifth, charted five points and finished ahead of Pulaski and D.C. Everest.

The Hodags three other players nearly advance along with Wild and Johnson, but was denied in close second round matches. Matt O'Melia was able to breeze his way past Miles Stifler of Wausau East 6-0, 6-3 at the No 3 singles flight.

And what appeared to be another straight set win turned directions. O'Melia took the first set 6-3 over Jon Richetto of Wausau West, but would fall 6-4, 6-1 in the final two sets.

While at No. 3 doubles flight, Connor Young and Jared Haug also had a close call in their second round match. In their first match, Haug/Young earned an impressive 6-2, 6-2 win over Tate Rauman/Luke Halorsen of Wausau West.

Young/Haug then in the second match fell to top-seeded Stephen Martell and Mario Duwe of Wausau East in two competitive sets, the final being 6-4.

At No .1 doubles Logan Keso and Grant Gilbert fell 6-2, 6-2 to Drew Schlies/Eric Stratmann of Bay Port. While Ryan Kovac and Jared Fabich at No. 2 doubles dropped 6-3, 6-3 to Tim Cornish/Preston Pagel of D.C. Everest. It was senior Kovac’s final match of his his school career.

The other Hodag senior, Cody Vinger fell in the first round at No. 2 singles. Vinger dropped 6-1, 6-3 to Drew Breun of Bay Port.

In sectionals at the Green Baby Tennis Club on Wednesday, Wild lost to top-seed Nathn Balthazor of De Pere and ended his journey to get to the WIAA state tournament. Johnson defeated Jackie Zablocki of De Pere and earned the title of a sectional champion at No. 4 singles. Unfortunatelythere are no No.4 single flights that compete at the state tournament.
MORE STORIES
Schedule
04/09
9:00AM
Quad @ Wausau West High School (Cancelled)
04/14
4:30PM
LakelandW 6-1
04/16
9:00AM
Quad @ Green Bay Southwest High School L 4-3
04/19
5:00PM
Away vs. PhillipsW 7-0
04/21
5:00PM
AntigoL 4-3
04/23
10:00AM
Invite @ Stevens PointT-6th of 8
04/26
5:00PM
Away vs. Medford AreaW 6-1
04/29
5:00PM
Away vs. AntigoW 6-1
05/05
5:00PM
PhillipsW 7-0
05/07
9:00AM
Game @ Wausau West High School vs Pulaski W 5-2
05/11
LakelandW 6-1
05/12
5:00PM
Medford Area W 5-2
05/14
9:00AM
GNC Meet @ Lakeland Union High School
05/16
TBD
Triangular @ RHSW 7-1 vs Ashland
L 4-3 vs Marshfield
05/23
Sub-Sectionals5th of 7 teams @ Bay Port Subsectional
05/25
SectionalsT-7th of 14 teams @ Bay Port Sectional
06/02
State
06/03
State
06/04
State
Standings
GNC Standings
Rhinelander128pts-
Antigo120pts-
Lakeland74pts-
Medford46pts-
Phillips15pts-
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