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2017 RHS Track Preview
By Hodagsports.com Staff - Posted on 03/20/2017
Photo By HodagSports.com Staff
The Rhinelander High School track and field team made strides in the 2016 season, and one of their main goals was to increase their number of athletes to strengthen the program for the future. And for the 2017 season, it looks like have done just that. Along with solid numbers, they also have a new head coach.

Coach Chris Ferge will be the boys' head coach for the 2017 season, marking his third straight season. But the biggest change will be Brittany Haakenson will now be the girls' head coach. This change will allow each coach to focus on fewer athletes throughout the season.

Last season the RHS girls finished fifth in the Great Northern Conference, while the boys finished last in the conference. Despite the teams' finishes in the GNC standings, the Hodags were able to send four athletes to the WIAA sectionals. But a tough sectional lineup, RHS would not send any athletes to the WIAA state meet for the first time in seven seasons.

This season the RHS track team has their numbers up, nearing around 70 athletes and they will be working on developing some young inexperienced varsity athletes, while building on some returning athletes. They are also striving for more of a team mentality rather than individual, in hopes of advancing more athletes in the WIAA regional and sectional meets. 

In 2016 the RHS girls' advanced to sectionals in three different events and lost Eva O'Melia to graduation. O'Melia competed in the 800 and was also part of the 4x800 meter relay.

Three of the 4x800 relay members will be return though including Alayna Franson, Gracie Quinn, and Payton Hartman. 

Junior Franson also qualified for the 1,600, but would end up 13.08 seconds shy of the state qualifying time. Franson is a two-spring sport athlete, who also plays soccer for the Hodags.

The Hodags will also return junior Lexie Rick (shot put, discus), Ellen Padgett and Erika Jorgenson (sprints) for the 2017 season.

While on the boys' side of action, the Hodags are slightly less experienced at the varsity level and had no sectional qualifiers; the closest was graduate Eric Tracy. Like the girls', the boys’ also have several underclassmen, as well as several new athletes. 

Colton Krueger will be returning for Rhinelander and will look to help the Hodags in the hurdles as well as shot put this season. While A.J. Kopplin looks to lead the Hodags in the high jump and Anthony Kowalski in the 400.

Rhinelander added a meet during spring break in Wisconsin Rapids where they only competed with 15 athletes due to Thursday in a quadrangular meet which also included Rapids, Port Edwards, and Reedsburg. Each team was allowed unlimited entries in each event and was scored through the top five places.

With Rhinelander track increasing their number of athletes, the 2017 season looks to be a promising rebuilding season. With several experienced athletes returning to lead the way, the Hodags will look to start and finish the season strong.

The Hodags will compete in their first actual invitational on Tuesday for an indoor meet held at Lakeland Union High School. The Hodags will be up against Lakeland, Edgar, Mercer, Three Lakes, and Wausau Newman in the invite that starts at 4:15PM.
RHS Alumni Baseball Game
By Hodagsports.com Staff - Posted on 06/24/2016
Photo By *
The Rhinelander High School Baseball alumni game is charted for Saturday, July 2 and will be held at Stafford Field. The Hodag Diamond Club will be sponsoring the event and is open for any former members of the RHS baseball team.

Admission for spectators is free, and will be a great time for everyone. The first pitch is scheduled for 5:00PM and the game will be followed with a cookout. The cost will be $10 for players.

For any additional information please contact Steve Michlig at 715-362-7648 or at st.michlig@gmail.com.
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