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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.

Baldwin football clinches league championship

Baldwin football clinches league championship

Baldwin football rolls over Traverse City Christian, 67-0  TRAVERSE CITY — It was business as usual as the Baldwin Panthers notched their seventh-straight win and clinched outright their third consecutive Northwest Six Football Conference title Saturday afternoon. Senior quarterback Brandon Childress had another all-state caliber performance with 195 yards passing and six scoring strikes while […]

Buzz Fortino bags big buck

Buzz Fortino bags big buck

BIG RAPIDS  — Thursday, Oct. 2, was only the second day of bow hunting season but Buzz Fortino of Big Rapids struck it rich with a 10-point buck. Fortino bagged his buck at 6 p.m. while hunting just east of Big Rapids. The inside rack span measured around 15 1/2 inches at the widest point. […]

Coyote soccer advances to semis

Coyote soccer advances to semis

Reed City defeats Lakeview in first round of district play REED CITY — It’s true. It isn’t easy in high school sports to beat the same team three times in one season. Reed City’s soccer team provided proof of that Tuesday night. The Coyotes had lost to Lakeview twice during the regular season but in […]

Baldwin routs Mesick, 63-6

Baldwin routs Mesick, 63-6

Panthers clinch a playoff berth for a third-straight season BALDWIN — It was business as usual for the Baldwin Panthers football team in a 63-6 rout over Mesick Friday night. But it wasn’t a typical night. It was homecoming and it was Baldwin’s sixth-straight win, improving the Panthers’ record to 6-1 and clinching a playoff […]

Local hunter makes time for outdoors

Local hunter makes time for outdoors

Keith Gay enjoys time in woods, on water in Baldwin BALDWIN — Keith Gay developed an interest in the outdoor opportunities that Lake County provides many years ago and his enthusiasm for the area hasn’t dwindled one bit. Gay has lived in rural Baldwin for 15 years. He’s from Marshall originally. “I retired from the […]