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FEATURED STORY
Hodags Softball falls to Mosinee 11-4
By Hodagsports.com Staff - Posted on 04/19/2017
Photo By HodagSports.com Staff
The Rhinelander High School softball team stuck around with the reigning Great Northern Conference champions, Mosinee for most of the game on Tuesday but Hodag errors and big hits from the Indians pushed them ahead 11-4 at Pioneer Park.

There was no doubt why Mosinee softball has earned the past eight GNC titles, and showed they did not plan on leaving the top of the conference anytime soon. The Indians cashed in on four big hits in the fifth, scoring five runs. Mosinee added five more in the seventh to cruise to a seven-run victory.

Rhinelander not only dropped their first GNC contest of the year (2-1 GNC), but they lost senior ace Ali Schickert in the final frame. It appeared to be a right knee injury in which she did not return and it is unknown how severe the injuries are at this time.

The Hodags played in arguably one of their most inconsistent defense games of the year, where they committed seven errors. Three of those errors led to the Indians scoring four runs. Mosinee also took advantage of a walk with the bases loaded, as well as a wild pitch to add two more runs.

But Rhinelander didn't back down, and battled offensively. The Hodags finished the afternoon with nine hits and rallied back and were only down two after six innings.

The Indians got on board in the second frame when Brooke Hintz scored on two Rhinelander errors with one out. Schickert was able to get the final two outs, the first a strikeout, and second a grounded right back to the circle. 

RHS had a chance to add runs at the bottom of the second, when Erica Counter hit a standup double to right center gap. Hope Wissbroecker singled with a hard shot between third and short to place runners on corners. But the Hodags left the two base runners stranded on a ground out to end the inning.

Schickert and the Hodags' defense went three-up-three-down in the third, but couldn’t take advantage and went without a base runner at the bottom of the frame. Schickert had a big fourth frame where she charted three strikeouts, with one walk in between. 

Makayla Kuester tried to get momentum swinging in the Rhinelander's favor, after leading off with a solo home-run to center, but the next two batters grounded out and the final batter struck out looking.

And the Indians would rally right back in the top of the fifth. Miranda Rux started with a slow roller to third for an infield single. Brooke Wierzbanowski would then reach on a bunt when things went downhill for Rhinelander's infield.
 
Two Mosinee runs would score after an overthrow to third base. McKayla Garski would follow with an RBI single to center. Garski advanced into scoring position after a bobbled ball in the outfield. A walk from Schickert loaded the bases, and a wild pitch would allow two more runs to come in, putting the Indians ahead 6-1.

But the game was far out of reach, and the Hodags once against pushed right back with momentum of their own in the bottom of the fifth. Wissbroecker and Molly Wagler hit singles to get on to start. Mikayla Evenstad had a single bunt to load the bases.

Ivy Packard followed with a bases-loaded sacrifice bunt to score Wissbroecker. Stephanie Kuester would then connect on a two-RBI double to right center to bring the Hodags within two at 4-6. But Makayla Kuester ripped a line drive to shortstop, that Wierzbanowski caught and flipped to second for a double play to end the inning and to avoid any more runs. 

Another three-up-three down sixth inning helped the Hodags, and they looked to take advantage but came up empty handed. Lindsay Juedes walked and stole second. Counter followed with a single to right field. Coach D.J. DeMeyer sent Juedes home where she was tagged out. And Wissbroecker grounded out to leave Counter stranded.

The Indians would come up with another big inning in the seventh which started with a walk and followed with back-to-back RBI doubles to put Mosinee ahead 8-4. And on the next play, Janel Logsdon hit a roller just left of the circle where Schickert appeared to slip getting the grounder. Schickert left the game, and Stephanie Kuester took over at the mound.

Rux would connect on a two-RBI double to put the Indians ahead 11-4, where they would hold the Hodags off the board at their last at bat. 

Schickert recorded the loss for Rhinelander after 6 1/3 innings of work. She allowed five earned runs on seven hits and added eight strikeouts and six walks.

The Hodags will get back on the diamond on Thursday when they travel to Antigo for another tough GNC contest and will host Northland Pines on Monday night at Pioneer Park.




Hodag Fastpitch shuts out Lakeland 4-0
By Hodagsports.com Staff - Posted on 04/18/2017
Photo By *
The Rhinelander High School softball team only collected five hits on Monday night on the road against Lakeland, but managed to pull through with a 4-0 shutout. In the Great Northern Conference matchup, Ali Schickert and Stephanie Kuester took control in the circle and would not allow a Thunderbird hit.

Throughout the first four innings of action, Schickert was able to earn nine strikeouts before Kuester came in for the final three frames and added four strikeouts to earn the save.

One of the biggest changes Lakeland seen for the 2017 season was freshman transfer (Kimberly) Tatum Morris. Rhinelander would collect five hits off starting pitcher, Morris including a solo homerun to right center from senior Erica Counter.

The 4-0 outcome, was a much closer ball game than the two teams have seen in recent years. During the 2016 season the Hodags swept Lakeland 32-0 and 12-0. But Monday, RHS had to play all seven frames, and did not earn the mercy 10-run like they did last year.

The Hodags came up with half of their runs in the second inning. Starting the second frame with double was Lindsay Juedes. Counter advanced Juedes with a bunt. And Hope Wissbroecker had an RBI single to bring Juedes in. And Molly Wagler would also chart an RBI to bring in Wissbroecker for the final run of the frame.

But the Thunderbirds had several opportunities on the night, but were unable to cash on any runs. In the third inning Miranda Menze walked and would steal second base. Menze advanced to third on a ground from Syerra Farrah. But Schickert was able to shut the threat down and earned a strikeout for the final out.

And the Hodags' final two runs of the night came in the fourth inning. Counters' homer would give RHS a 3-0 lead and momentum to tack on one more run. Later in the frame, Wagler would single and was drove in by Mikayla Evenstad.

In the seventh, Lakeland put two runners on base with a walk and an error at second with two outs. But this time Kuester and Rhinelander's defense were able to avoid the threats and keep the Thunderbirds off the board.

The Hodags will be put to the test Tuesday when they host reigning Great Northern Conference champions, Mosinee. And will close the week on the road Thursday against Antigo.
MORE STORIES
Schedule
03/28
4:30PM
Away vs. Merrill Postponed
04/04
4:30PM
Away vs. MarshfieldPostponed
04/10
4:30PM
Away vs. Stevens Point (SPASH) Postponed
04/11
5:00PM
Away vs. Medford AreaW 4-0
04/13
5:00PM
Away vs MarshfieldPostponed
04/17
5:00PM
Away vs. Lakeland W 4-0
04/18
5:00PM
MosineeL 11-4
04/20
5:00PM
Away vs. Antigo
04/21
4:30PM
Away vs. Wausau West
04/24
5:00PM
Northland Pines
04/25
5:00PM
Tomahawk
04/27
5:00PM
Lakeland
04/29
11:00AM
Away vs. Denmark, Kewaunee - Invite
05/02
5:00PM
Away vs. Northland Pines
05/06
11:45AM
Away vs. Kaukauna, Shawano - Quad
05/08
5:00PM
Away vs. Mosinee
05/09
4:30PM
Away vs. Wausau East
05/13
10:00AM
Away vs. Baraboo Tournament
05/16
5:00PM
Antigo
05/18
5:00PM
Away vs. Tomahawk
05/20
11:00AM
Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln (DH)
05/23
TBD
Regionals Away vs.
05/24
TBD
Regionals Away vs.
05/26
TBD
Regionals Away vs.
05/30
TBD
Sectionals Away vs.
06/01
TBD
Sectionals Away vs.
06/08
TBD
STATE
Standings
GNC Standings
Mosinee3-0
Rhinelander2-0
Antigo2-0
Tomahawk1-1
Medford1-2
Lakeland0-3
Northland Pines0-3
Overall Standings
Antigo5-1
Tomahawk3-1
Mosinee3-2
Medford3-3
Rhinelander2-0
Lakeland1-6
Northland Pines0-4
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