Tim Ebner, Dean Lounsbrough Step Down as Head Coach & Assistant of the Onalaska/La Crosse Hilltoppers Hockey Co-Op.
By Rik Franke
The 2018'19 high school hockey season ended just a few short months ago with another great season for Hilltoppers hockey as they won the MVC crown, the sectional final and an impressive battle at the State Quarterfinal against eventual state champion University School of Milwaukee.
The success of the Onalaska high school hockey program is not just in the water, it's been a proud tradition that has been built over time, with real structure that you find embodied in a college program.
The numbers speak for themselves. Tim, Dean & Todd Wizner along with many assistants over the years compiled a 286-81-8 overall record in 15 years. (68-15-1 in the NCHL Conference, 98-15-1 in the MVC). First place in the MVC the last 9 years and 12 conference titles in the last 15 seasons. Four time state qualifier, a magical state run in 2013'14 with consecutive thrilling come from behind victories over Kettle Morraine & USM to an eventual loss to Verona in the state final.
I remember the 2007'8 undefeated regular season 21-0 that ended in heartbreak when Sparta/West Salem's freshman Brandon Unser scored the game winning goal to end the season for the Hilltoppers in the playoffs.
2008 did not get any easier for this hockey program when tragedy struck in the hardest way with the loss of Jacob James Trannel on December 16th, 2008. Teams from all over the state came to show support to a community, team and family that suffered the ultimate loss. It's times like these that a coaching staff has to call on more than just hockey knowledge to bring a team together. The Onalaska Hilltoppers won their conference that year and also qualified for state.
Tim and Dean will be the first to say that this is not the end of great success for the Onalaska/La Crosse hockey program. It is time for a new perspective with great athletes returning to continue to make their mark on hockey in the Coulee Region.
Onalaska Associate Principal/Activities Director Charlie Ihle had this to say about Coach Ebner. "First and foremost, I can't thank Tim Ebner enough for his commitment and the first class culture he and his staff created. I feel lucky to have many great coaches at OHS and Tim exemplifies that and he has certainly been an outstanding leader for the hockey community and school, but most importantly for our student athletes. These are certainly big shoes to fill, but also feel we can find the right person to continue the many great things Tim helped grow and establish with our boys hockey program."
I would imagine you are wondering what's next for Tim & Dean? Well, in Tim's case he will be putting more focus into business at Ebner Properties and have more opportunity to travel on weekend's come hockey season to see his son Tyler play for Gustavus Adolphus College. Tim will still be coaching the Wisconsin U-18 team in the NIT, which were the winners in the 2019 tournament just weeks ago.
Dean Lounsbrough is excited to be spending more time with family after many years of coaching High School hockey and Wisconsin Blue Devils AAA Hockey.
It has been my pleasure to broadcast Hilltoppers hockey since 2001 and I couldn't ask for a better professional relationship that has grown into a great friendship over the years. Best of luck guy's, Go Hilltoppers!
Rik Franke has been covering WIAA High School Hockey in the Coulee Region for 19 years.
First four years of the new millenium with WKTY and then WLFN Radio. The video coverage started on USTREAM TV with the birth of CRSN, then moved on to the High School Cube and Now on Coulee Region Sports Network through the CRSN You Tube Channel.