Rill pushing Hawks with expanded strength program

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Shawano strength and conditioning coach Brian Rill encourages Nathaniel Neumann while doing pushups as part of a three-day-a-week summer course at Shawano Community High School. About 30 high school students attend the class regularly.

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Shawano strength and conditioning coach Brian Rill applauds Shawano soon-to-be sophomore Gracyn Habeck after clearing a plyometric jump during a session last week.

As strength and conditioning coach Brian Rill completes his first complete calendar year at Shawano Community High School, changes are occurring.

Rill took over after former football coach Bill Hass stepped down as the weight room supervisor last season. Hass received a yearly stipend for holding the position since his retirement from the football head coaching position prior to the 2013 season.

“The biggest thing I’m trying to change isn’t the physical part. We’ve got a lot of really good athletes here,” Rill said. “It’s the mental part. It’s the idea of competing in everything we do.”

Rill teaches five different classes over the course of the school year, including three sport weight training classes and two other weightlifting classes.


Strong start presents question of what’s brewing for second half

Like a double rainbow, the Milwaukee Brewers’ hold on first place this far into the season is an oddity both pleasant and unexpected.

Brewers fans may hold their gaze at the standings with a skeptical eye, musing over whether the phenomenon they’re seeing isn’t an illusion.

A few months ago, the only drama that figured to come from the Brewers at the All-Star break was whether any of them had a shot at winning the Home Run Derby.

Now, with the Midsummer Classic approaching, the team with the lowest payroll in baseball remains in front of the defending champion Chicago Cubs, in front of the St. Louis Cardinals and, against all odds – or at least, against the 200-1 odds they were given before the season – also in front of everyone else in the National League Central. With a lineup that includes only one starting position player from last year, the team that no one saw coming has sat atop its division for the past 41 days.


Carroll 3-peats in youth division at Leopolis Triathlon

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Jeff Rogowski, left, and Reese Rogowski, both of Wittenberg, race to take off their life jackets after the swimming portion of the Leopolis Triathlon on Tuesday.

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Elleana Buday, right, of Mequon, holds the hand of her mother, Jaclyn, during the final stretch of the run to end the Leopolis Triathlon. Elleana placed 49th among youth competitors, while Jaclyn took 74th in the beer belly division.

For the past two years, Shawano’s Ben Carroll has been the top youth performer at the Leopolis Triathlon.

On Tuesday, he backed up his performance with another top finish, his third consecutive victory, in a time of 27 minutes and 45 seconds.

“It’s a fun race, and this is where my dad lived, and just want to keep running it,” Carroll said. “It’s fun.”

Carroll’s time was 1:24 better than the second-place finisher, Matthew Niles, of De Pere.

The youth race includes a 50-yard swim, 5-mile bike ride and 2-mile run. The beer belly division, for ages 17 and older, competes on the same course. The jocks race includes a 50-yard swim, 12-mile bike ride and 5-mile run.

Carroll, who wrestles at Shawano Community High School, said the 5-mile bike ride is his favorite part of the race. The triathlon gives him something besides wrestling to stay fit, he said.


Patriots dismantle Bonduel pitching in 14-2 victory

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Bonduel Legion second baseman Josh Richter jumps to make a catch as Shawano’s Parker Pues steals second base late in Bonduel’s 14-2 home loss Tuesday.

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Bonduel Legion first baseman Dalton Cairns extends to get an out on Noah Brodhagen’s ground ball during Tuesday’s 14-2 home loss. Bonduel allowed 14 hits and made five errors.

The Shawano Legion baseball team had its way with the Bonduel pitchers, pounding out 14 hits in Tuesday’s 14-2 road victory.

The Patriots scored in six of the seven innings of the Fourth of July rivalry game.

“We had really good at-bats, so that’s why we scored the runs we did,” Shawano head coach Ryan Koenig said.

Alex Hoffman and Jacob Lacy each drove in three runs, while Connor Klish added two RBIs on a single in the seventh inning.

Brett Ainsworth, Lacy, Noah Brodhagen and Kien Moorman each racked up multiple hits.

Koenig liked the approach his team took at the plate against six Bonduel pitchers.

“You’ve got to make the other pitcher pitch,” Koenig said. “You’ve got to let them get behind in the count, and then get good at-bats.”


BABA Roundup



WP: Paul Sellner – 6 IP, 7K; LP: Nick Desrochers – 6 IP

Tigerton: Cody Riemer was 4 for 4 with a home run; Jon Berg, 2 for 5 with a double; Jayden Sivertson, 2 for 4; Pat Provoast doubled.

Caroline: Neil Hoffman, 2 for 4.


WP: Seth Korb 6 IP 0H, 8 K; LP: Nate Laude

Little Falls: Kal Fischer was 2 for 4 with a double; Drew Radies, 2 for 4; Hunter Gruenwald, 2 for 4 with a double.


WP: Paul Murphy 5 IP 9K 6BB 3R; LP: Kurt Brei

Bowler: Paul Murphy was 3 for 5 with a double; Walker Miller, 3 for 6; Nate Montez 3 for 5; Logan Moderson, 2 for 3.

Tilleda: Kurt Brei was 2 for 3.



Neopit won on a walk-off hit by Dustin Peters.

WP: Al Peters; LP: Derrick Bowman

Neopit: Dustin Peters was 3 for 5.


Legion Baseball Highlights

Shawano 4 New London 1

Shawano scored four runs on just two hits as the Patriots won at home Sunday.

Alex Hoffman and Kasey Kristof were the only players to get hits for Shawano (5-6).

Bryce Gagnow pitched a complete game, giving up six hits and no earned runs. He struck out two and walked two.


Patriots hang on for 10-8 win over Antigo

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Shawano Legion’s Noah Brodhagen dives between the legs of Antigo pitcher Jake Fleischman while scoring on a wild pitch from second base in the third inning of Friday’s 10-8 home victory. Brodhagen had two hits, two RBIs and two runs for the Patriots.

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Shawano Legion center fielder Dylan Sumnicht scores on an RBI double from Alex Hoffman in the bottom of the first inning at home Friday. Sumnicht scored two runs on three hits in the 10-8 victory over Antigo.

The Shawano American Legion baseball team gave up 14 hits, but two big outs in the top of the sixth Friday turned the tide in favor of the host Patriots.

With runners on second and third with one out, Wade Farmer hit a grounder to Shawano pitcher Kasey Kristof, who looked the runner back to third base before making the throw to first.

Kristof then got Jake Fleischman to strike out to maintain a one-run lead as the Patriots went on to win 10-8 at Memorial Park.

“It settled him down a little bit,” Shawano head coach Ryan Koenig said. “He’s a natural infielder, and he did the right thing right away, making him stop and then making the throw to first, and then we just had to get one more out.

“When there’s guys in scoring position with one out, anything can happen. That was a huge thing for us because if they score those two runs, who knows what happens.”


Points races gaining clarity, competition at halfway point

Though it is exceedingly hard to believe, we have reached the halfway point of the 2017 racing season.

Over the next few weeks, point races will stabilize, and we will have a much clearer picture of the true contenders for the five division titles. Taking a look at the points picture right now, there are certainly a few surprises.

First off, though, no surprise at all is the fact that Travis Van Straten again sits atop the IMCA Stock Car standings. Van Straten, who has won the last three consecutive point titles, would join some rarified air in terms of track champions. Only Roger Regeth from 1974 through 1977 and MJ McBride from 1985 through 1989 have won four or more consecutive point titles. Van Straten already has five wins to his credit also.

Defending IMCA Sport Mod champion Jordan Barkholtz is once again leading the standings this year as well. Barkholtz has four wins on the season.


Vollmer, Diamondcats slow Grizzlies in 4-0 win

Leader Photo by Vicki Dombeck Bonduel Legion catcher Riley Allen tags out Clintonville’s Colton Kluth at home plate on a throw from Brandon Olsen in right field to end the top of the fifth inning in Bonduel’s 4-0 home loss Thursday.

Leader Photo by Chris Caporale Bonduel Legion second baseman Bryce Weier catches Clintonville’s Hunter Vollmer stealing during Bonduel’s 4-0 home loss Thursday. The Grizzlies allowed three unearned runs over the first six innings.

Hunter Vollmer reached base twice on errors and scored two runs for the Clintonville American Legion baseball team Thursday on the road, but it was his pitching that was even more impressive.

Vollmer allowed just three hits and struck out eight batters as he pitched a complete game in a 4-0 victory over Bonduel.

“He had them guessing. On top of his heat, that was the fastest I’ve seen him throw all year, and his curveball was just clicking,” Clintonville head coach Randy Finger said. “He hit all his spots.”

Vollmer gave up a leadoff single to Jordan Boldt in the first inning, but a double play against the next batter erased any threat.

Bonduel had just four base runners for the remainder of the game. Vollmer struck out the side in the third inning and did not let a runner get past second base all game.


Legion Baseball Highlights

Seymour 8

Shawano 1

Shawano gave up four runs over the first two innings and managed just one run in Thursday’s road loss.

Alex Hoffman drove in the Patriots’ lone run in the fifth inning.

Casey Baumann and Brett Ainsworth each pitched three innings for Shawano (3-6).


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