Local players may still play at WIAC and MIAC schools

By Jim den Hollander



The Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference announced in a press release earlier this week that its Council of Chancellors voted to resume its NCAA Division 3 Winter Athletics schedule on February 1, dependent on the securing of ongoing COVID-19 testing.

Kaylee Engel was captain of the Badger Lightning last season

That is welcome news for athletes with Sauk County connections looking to get their respective college hockey careers underway.

Kaylee Engel, captain of the Badger Lightning varsity girl’s hockey team will begin her first season with the Northland College Lumberjills  while Jordan O’Connor who helped the Sauk Prairie Eagles varsity team reach the Sectional semi-finals last will suit up for the UW-River Falls Falcons.

Two other local athletes will play in the MIAC which as of today has yet to make an announcement on its regular season.

Sebastian Frank began his high school run with RWD as a student at Wisconsin Dells High School, but he was ultimately signed by the Forest Lake Lakers who transformed into the Minnesota Mullets of the United States Premier Hockey League. He wore a ‘C’ on his jersey last season as well and began his next chapter at Gustavus Adolphus as a member of the ‘Gusties’ this past Fall.

Jordan O’Connor makes a stop against Waunakee Warriors in Badger North Conference play in 2019-20.

Also, former Reedsburg area resident, Julianna Teske who played youth hockey with the Madison Capitols organization, moved with her family to Warroad, Minnesota where she played four years of high school hockey with the Warriors, putting up 26 goals and 71 points. Teske will begin her college hockey career with the Augsburg University Auggies.

The MIAC Conference did  announce a start to the winter season but did issue a press release on December 15 announcing it would reconvene in January to investigate and hopefully, confirm plans for winter sports seasons, including both Men’s and Women’s hockey.




Badger Lightning drops a pair on northern swing

By Jim den Hollander



Badger Lightning varsity girls hockey team faced a race two games in one day challenge Saturday with a road trip into Central/North Wisconsin.

First up, the Lightning faced off against a tough Northland Pines Team in Eagle River falling 7-0 in an afternoon contest before moving on to Rhinelander for an evening game against the Northern Edge where the Lightning led early and charged back in the third but ultimately fell a goal shy in a 3-2 loss.

Badger Lightning 0 @ Northland Pines Eagles  7

The first game brought an end to an impressive season opening streak for Bella Bowden who scored in each of the team’s first three games.

The Eagles grabbed control quick on home ice opening the scoring 54 seconds in and up 2-0 by the two-minute mark.

Two more had the Eagles in front 4-0 after a period with another pair in the second and the Lightning limited them to just one in the third.

Freshman goaltender Alyssa Gada was the busiest player on the ice, facing 46 Eagles shots in the contest while the Lightning was limited to just eight.

The Eagles moved to 2-1 on the season with the win and added a 7-1 win against Medford Tuesday as well.

Badger Lightning 2 @ Northern Edge 3

Signe Begalske connected for the Lightning 2:51 into the game at Rhinelander, taking a feed from Kayla Capener. The home team struck back to tie it in the ninth minute and grabbed its first and only lead about three minutes later.

Another goal in the final minute of the middle period padded the home team’s margin but Bowden found the net for the fourth time in four games, unassisted with 4:26 to play to make the finish a little more exciting.

The Lightning unfortunately failed to net the equalizer in their best offensive period of the weekend as they matched the Edge with 10-shots apiece.

Once again Gada was peppered with shots facing another 52 in the contest including a middle period that saw her kicking out 23 of 24 Rhinelander chances.

The Edge evened its season record to 2-2 with the win while the Lightning fell to 1-3. Since then the Edge dropped a 10-0 decision to Wisconsin Valley Union (Stevens Point)

The Lightning enjoys a week off but is in the middle of a five-game stretch on the road, heading to Brookfield to play the Glacier on Saturday. In a previous meeting at Pierce Park Pavilion Dec. 5, the Lightning collected a 5-2 win.




Eagles start strong with win against Thunderbirds

Sauk Prairie Eagles varsity hockey team is coming off one of the most successful seasons in its history and saw several players graduate in the spring of 2020.

But if anyone expected them to take a big step back, they might be surprised after the Eagles finally got its season underway Friday night at Pierce Park Pavilion with an 8-2 road win against the host Baraboo/Portage Thunderbirds.

The loss dropped the Thunderbirds to 0-3 on the season so far while the Eagles were making their debut after original start was postponed the previous week.

Thunderbirds hit the board first in this one, Oliver Scanlan finding the mesh just 50 seconds into the contest, unassisted.

Micah Hanson scored the first Eagles’ goal of the season, from Thor Peterson and Nick Mast 9:30 into the period but Thunderbirds struck back and grabbed another lead just 40 seconds later on a goal by Peyton Sloan from Kyle Poole and the home team carried the lead into the middle period.

The lead held up until late in the second but the Eagles struck for three goals in 2:13 to tie, lead and add insurance heading to the third.

Nick Mast scored the first two with Brodie Trollop setting up one, then scoring the third. Luke Mast assisted on two of the three.

Trollop added his second early in the third before Erik Peterson struck for a pair and Thor Peterson rounded the scoring.

Luke and Nick Mast both added two more assists with singles for Hakon Peterson, Nam Ganch and Landon Clary.

Kaden Stracke picked up the win in goal for the Eagles with 16 saves while Andrew Schaetzl was peppered with 51 shots in goal for the T-Birds.

The Eagles were scheduled to finally play on home ice Tuesday (December 15) against the Beaver Dam Golden Beavers and the T-Birds stay busy with a weekend encounter, a rare second meeting with a non-conference opponent as they travel to Menomonie to face the same Mustangs who grabbed a 5-3 win at Pierce Park Pavilion in the season opener for both Dec. 1