Wednesday was national signing day across the country. 17 local athletes signed their letters of intent this afternoon, including three that will be a Badger.
First, Wisconsin Rapids' Hayden Biegel will follow his brother Vince to Madison where he'll play offensive line. New Badgers head coach Gary Andersen feels Biegel could follow in the footsteps of other great UW linemen.
Austin Ramesh from Northland Pines signed to play with the Badgers at fullback. Ramesh will grayshirt, initially, and will be on campus on January of 2014. He'll have the opportunity to go through spring ball in 2014, and will have 5 years of eligibility (including a reshirt year) remaining beginning in the fall of 2014.
Medford's Ben Hemer is Madison-bound, too. Hemer will join the Badger program as a preferred walk-on, like his brother Ethan did four years ago. Now Ethan, a senior, is under scholarship and has been a starter on the defensive line since the middle of his redshirt freshman season. Ben will play on the offensive line with the Badgers.
DC Everest's Connor Riese is taking his size and talent to Wyoming. The Evergreens lineman initially committed to play football at Western Michigan. But that coaching staff has since been let go. So he decided he'd be better off saddling up at Wyoming with the Cowboys.
A handful of players signing to play D2 football, we'll start in Marathon. NewsChannel 7 All-Star Vince Dinkel will suit up for Bemidji State following in the footsteps of his mom and athletic director Jack Culhane.
Zach Pozorski from SPASH is taking his talents to Minnesota State Mankato, the NewsChannel 7 All-Star was the VFA-South Player of the Year.
A Couple of Wisconsin Rapids players are going to Minnesota-Duluth, including NC7 All-Star Regis Henke, a big linebacker at 6-4, 220 pounds. And Red Raider teammate Zach Bassuener, who will play defensive back for the Bulldogs.
From DC Everest, Adam Decker will join Henke and Bassuener in Duluth. Decker says being able to work with Duluth's O-line coach in the summer was a big factor in his decision.
Over at Wausau East, Gabby Charles will play Division One soccer at Eastern Illinois over the likes of Northern Michigan and Southwest Minnesota State. Charles says the end game for her is eventually law school.
Everest goal keeper Nate Kitchell will play between the pipes at Valparaiso. UW-Milwaukee had some interest last year, but a change in the coaching staff there led him to pick Valpo. Kitchell's mom, Everest athletic director LeeAnn Kitchell, was also a D1 athlete.
SPASH's David Tuchinsky will play soccer at Division 1 New Jersey Institute of Technology. Tuchinisky said that UW-Green Bay, Radford and Western Michigan were all in the running. But he believes he found a good fit in the Garden State.
Everest's Emilee Mytinger is set to play soccer at Marquette. She had looked at Duluth and UW-Milwaukee. But in the end, Marquette was exactly the place Mytinger wanted to be.
Everest's Paige Day is heading to D1 Southern Alabama for track and field, choosing the Jaguars over North Dakota State and Coastal Carolina. Day is glad the recruiting process is over and already has high goals set for the shot put and discus at the next level.
Two more Everest tracksters are headed to D2 Minnesota State Mankato. Grady Keding chose Mankato over five others schools, including North Dakota State because mankato was more persausive.
Brianna Ziolkowski will join Keding at Mankato. Ziolkowski had interest from Winona State and St. Sloud, but felt there was a better atmosphere around Mankato's track team.
And finally, Josh Nielsen from DC Everest will pitch for the Winona State baseball team. Nielsen says between now and the time he steps on campus, he wants to add a 4th pitch to his arsenal.