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The Black River Falls volleyball team didn’t pick up a win over West Salem Thursday, but the Lady Tigers had a better performance than the teams’ match earlier this season.

BRF dropped the first two sets but bounced back to take the third set before losing the fourth and the home match.

“Despite the loss, BRF did not back down and improved from their first meeting, taking one set from the Panthers,” BRF head coach Amy Olson said. “We did a great job finding the holes in West Salem’s defense. I also thought we served a lot tougher and only missed two serves on the night compared to earlier in the week against Westby.

“Unfortunately, BRF struggled passing consistently. We gave up too many runs out of serve-receive. Not that all of our passes were bad, but we struggled making passes we could outright attack off from.

Two Black River Falls girls tennis players earned conference recognition with their performances at the Coulee Conference Tournament.

Jenna Briggs and Mackenzie Johnson each earned second team All-Conference accolades at the Saturday meet held at the Black River Falls High School tennis courts.

“I am very proud to have Jenna and Mackenzie earn a second-team All-Conference spot,” said Jim Rufsholm, BRF’s activities director. “I am certain they would have rather won their championship matches, but they have battled all season, and it is nice to see them get some recognition for all their hard work and leadership this season.”

Briggs took on West Salem’s Abby Noll in the first round at No. 1 singles and won the match 6-2, 6-3 to move on to play Anna Dobbe of Onalaska Luther for the championship. Dobbe topped Briggs 7-5 in a close first set and 6-2 in the second set to take the Coulee title.

The hydroelectric dam in Black River Falls lost one of its gates and several Jackson County roads are closed as a flood warning continues for the Black River.

Jackson County Emergency Management Coordinator Kristina Page said Jackson County – which declared a state of emergency – largely was spared compared to flooding impacts in the region, but she’s still urging residents to use caution.

“Actually, it could be a lot worse,” Page said. “It looks bad, but it could be a lot worse. We were lucky that yesterday we didn’t get the heavy rains (levels) that surrounding counties did.”

The Black River at Black River Falls was at 58.9 feet as of Thursday afternoon and was expected to crest at 59.6 feet later Thursday. The mark puts the water level below the 61.47-foot record crest set Sept. 24, 2010.

The hydroelectric dam in Black River Falls, which was replaced in 2012, lost one of its gates when a piece of debris traveled through it Thursday, and several boats and docks were broken away in Hatfield on Lake Arbutus and were sent over Hatfield’s hydroelectric dam.

Multiple frac sand mining permits could be in jeopardy, and a Jackson County town supervisor is charged with official misconduct over allegations that he voted to grant a license to a mining company that had agreed to lease his land.

Theron Prindle, 62, of Alma Center, signed a contract in 2012 to lease about 154 acres to Goose Landing Sand Co. The next year, Prindle, who has served since 1991 on the Alma Town Board, then voted to approve a development agreement for Goose Landing, according to a criminal complaint filed Friday.

State law prohibits public officials from taking part in actions that affect a matter in which they or their family have a financial interest.

The complaint goes on to say Prindle voted in favor of every sand mining permit, license or application to come before the board, in spite of strong opposition from town residents.

Construction at three of Ho-Chunk Gaming’s sites is set to get under way after officials held groundbreaking ceremonies for the tribe’s $153 million expansion projects.

Ho-Chunk Gaming – Black River Falls on Friday held the last of the three events that mark the beginning of the projects and years of work to bring casino improvements to fruition.

“It’s been a long time coming,” said Elliot Garvin, a former Ho-Chunk Nation legislator and business committee member who delivered the keynote address. “We’re going to be delving into a new adventure here.

“I see nothing but good things coming for our people.”

The Black River Falls location will receive a 120-room hotel with a new entry, an expanded and redesigned casino floor with 200 additional slots, high-limit gaming, a remodeled buffet with more seating and a new parking lot.

Officials hope the projects at BRF, Wisconsin Dells and Wittenberg will be completed by the end of 2017, and all facilities will maintain their regular hours and offerings during the work, which aims to have minimal impacts on guests.