I really like my Marlin 917v .17HMR, I get exceptional accuracy from it. I love it enough that I can't imagine getting rid of it. I can put 4 shots into a space smaller than a dime from 65 yards and as far as small-medium game is concerned, if I can see it I can hit it. It hits hard, the 17 grain v-max will tear a gray squirrel up. If shooting for meat, I get good enough accuracy that head shots on something as small as a squirrel are very possible. It will reach out past 200 yards, the main factor for longer range with it is how much the wind affects the 17 grain bullet.
A .22-250 makes a good varmint/target/hunting option. It will shoot like a laser beam in the distances your working with. It is also capable of taking any animal up to a large whitetail.