BARABOO — An up-and-down season for the Baraboo/Portage boys hockey team resulted in four players earning All-Badger North Conference honors.
Joe Zemanovic received second-team All-Badger North recognition, while Dane Hinz, Gabe Larson and Luna Larson each earned honorable mention nods. It was the first career all-conference honor for Zemanovic and the Larsons.
“I am proud of how the team battled through a season that was filled with adversity,” Baraboo/Portage coach Andy Waldvogel said. “The seniors that exit out of our program have been playing together for a long time and have made many great memories together as teammates. In reflecting on who we were as a team at the beginning of the year and how the team came together at the end of the season, it’s something they can be proud of.”
Zemanovic made the second team as a defenseman. The senior tallied four goals and five assists in 22 regular-season games, then put up two goals and two assists in a 7-0 WIAA regional win over the Viroqua co-op on Feb. 11. The seventh-seeded Thunderbirds (8-17, 4-6 Badger North) went on to suffer a 2-1 loss at second-seeded Reedsburg/Wisconsin Dells/Mauston in a regional final on Feb. 14.
Gabe Larson was Baraboo/Portage’s lone forward to earn all-conference honors in 2018-19. The senior picked up honorable mention recognition after tallying seven goals and five assists in 25 games.
Gabe Larson finished sixth on the team in points, trailing Campbell Koseor (eight goals, 10 assists), Cameron Logan (eight goals, eight assists), Josh Beale (nine goals, seven assists), Mike Wech (nine goals, five assists) and Zemanovic.
Luna Larson, a freshman defenseman, had three goals and three assists in 21 regular-season games before adding three assists in two postseason games.
Hinz was an honorable mention goaltender for the second straight year. The junior had an 8-15 record on the season, including posting a shutout in the win over Viroqua. Hinz allowed 85 goals in 25 games, stopping 637 of the 722 shots he faced for an .882 save percentage.
Hinz will help lead a 2019-20 Baraboo/Portage team that should return plenty of experience to the ice.
“I am excited as we enter into our offseason about the returning players that will be a big part of our team’s identity next season,” Waldvogel said. “There were many underclassmen that also had to step up in times of adversity to contribute at the varsity level. I feel like we will have guys coming back that will ‘pick up the rope’ and pull as hard as they can to continue to move our program in a positive direction.”
ALL-BADGER NORTH BOYS HOCKEY
Forwards: Sam VanderHoeven, sr., Beaver Dam; Derek Pawlak*, sr., Reedsburg co-op; Riley Jelinek*, jr., Sauk Prairie. Defensemen: Jon Zobel*, sr., Reedsburg co-op; Drew Christianson, so., Waunakee. Goalie: Cooper Oakes*, fr., Reedsburg co-op.
Forwards: Daniel Smolen, jr., Beaver Dam; Camden Desroches, jr., Sauk Prairie; Danny Reis, so., Waunakee; Mason Ihrke, sr., Waunakee. Defensemen: Joe Zemanovic, sr., Baraboo; Willy Hanson, jr., Sauk Prairie. Goalie: Hunter Beck, jr., Waunakee.
Baraboo/Portage: Luna Larson, fr.; Gabe Larson, sr.; Dane Hinz, jr. DeForest co-op: Jack Hagen, sr. Reedsburg co-op: Connor Schyvinck, so.; Thomas Pfaff, jr. Sauk Prairie: Hakan Peterson, fr. Waunakee: Keegan Ripley, sr.