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About John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at jraffel@pioneergroup.com.

Pistons lose last home game

AUBURN HILLS — The Toronto Raptors are going to the NBA playoffs while the Detroit Pistons are not. They definitely played Sunday at The Palace like two teams going in the opposite direction with the Raptors taking a 116-107 victory. It was the final home game of the season for the Pistons. Demar DeRozan had […]

Pine River softball defeats Kingsley

Pine River softball defeats Kingsley

Bucks take sweep Kingsley, 10-4 and 12-2 KINGSLEY — Pine River’s softball team defeated Kingsley 10-4 and 12-2 in non-league action Saturday. The Bucks, who were swept Friday night in losses to Manistee to open the season, are 2-2. Brooke Pennington was the winning pitcher in the first game. The Bucks scored two runs in […]

Citizen wildlife group looking for support

Citizen wildlife group looking for support

BIG RAPIDS — Citizens for Professional Wildlife Management has been appealing to local sportsmen to sign a petition to present to the state legislature regarding key pro-hunting and fishing issues. Jane Finnerty, a regional vice president for the Michigan United Conservation Clubs (MUCC) was at the recent Pere Marquette Wild Turkey Hunters Rendezvous at Baldwin, […]

Pine River competes at Coleman

Pine River boys finish first, girls place second at four-team meet COLEMAN – Pine River’s boys track team was first and the girls were second in a four-team meet at Coleman on Tuesday. Pine River’s boys had 196 points compared to 176 for Harrison, 121 from Marion and 118 for Coleman. Dominic Garcia led Pine […]

Small game season ends on a quiet note

Small game season ends on a quiet note

BALDWIN — A rather tough season for small game hunters ended with the close of the rabbit campaign on Monday. Winter conditions, obviously, have made it tough for hunters to have much success. Erin Victory, the Department of Natural Resources wildlife biologist for Lake and Osceola counties, said hunter access in the woods “has been a […]

Walleye fishing gives anglers a challenge

BIG RAPIDS — Walleye fishing presents its challenge but it’s a sport that anglers can master with the right approach. That was the message from Eric Lund, the owner of the Esnagami Lodge of southern Ontario who focused on walleye, pike and trout and advanced fly fishing during a seminar recently at Triggertime Outfitters in […]