Boston High School: Tennis

Maine's Hammond on road to tennis glory

January, 2, 2014
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High school tennis players, even the best ones, rarely look imposing when you see them off the court. You see a tall kid, you think basketball. You see a kid with height, weight, and little body fat, and you think football.

MaineSo it is with Sadie Hammond of Belgrade, Maine. You wouldn’t go looking for tennis players in Belgrade anyway, and if you saw her walking down the street, you’d probably have no indication that she’s one of the best tennis players in New England, and her goal is to be one of the best in the world.

But that’s the thing about Sadie: You rarely have the chance to catch her walking down the street. While other 16-year-olds are in public schools, Sadie takes classes online so she’ll have more time to train. While other 16-year-olds are on Twitter, Sadie is developing a serve that was clocked at over 100 miles per hour when she was 15.

"I'm just trying to build my weapons, and make them bigger," Sadie said.

In October, Sadie played Petra Rampre, a 33-year-old pro who was ranked 208th nationally and has won eight ITF singles titles. Rampre won 6-1, 6-3. Sadie felt the match was more competitive than that.

“It was my first main draw in any pro circuit tournament,” Sadie said. “I was kind of nervous (the first set). The second set was a lot closer than 6-3. I had a lot of game points.”

In the latest United States Tennis Association singles ratings, Hammond is ranked 14th in New England among girls 18 and under, and 15th among girls 16 and under, (however, she doesn’t play in 16U tournaments, which lowers her rating points and causes her to be ranked lower in that class). Falmouth’s Meghan Kelley is the only other player from Maine in the Top 20 on either list.

Those rankings are actually on the low side for Hammond. In July, she was second in New England among all girls singles players 18-and-under. Some of her recent tournaments don’t count toward those point totals, and she had tendinitis in her wrist over the summer, which has affected her place in the standings.

“I played a lot of matches in May, and I think it was just overuse,” Sadie said. “I was out for the whole summer. I iced it after every time I hit to keep it from coming back, but it’s fine now.

“Mentally, it was so hard. I was still able to play – I just couldn’t hit my backhand. My first few matches back were a struggle, just getting back into match mode.”

On the tennisrecruiting.net website, Sadie is ranked first in Maine, fourth in New England, and 46th in the United States among potential college recruits. She’s a junior at Laurel Springs Prep School, and online school based out of California. That schooling option allows her to adhere to a seven-day-a-week schedule in which she plays tennis and works out both in the morning and the afternoon. By this fall, she hopes to make the decision on whether to attend college, or turn pro.

Colleges have already shown a lot of interest – in Florida recently, the coach from Tennessee watched her throughout the tournament and e-mailed her afterward to sell her on taking an unofficial visit to Knoxville – but Sadie is also fully aware that she is lucky enough not to need a scholarship. Her great-grandparents founded Hammond Lumber, a business that still thrives. (Family lore is that Sadie’s great-grandmother loaned her husband the $50 he needed to start the business.) Sadie has a personal coach, a personal trainer, and the opportunity to go play where the top players are.

“I totally appreciate it, completely,” she said. “There’s so much effort going into this from everyone.”

Ironically, Sadie’s parents, Mike and Amy Hammond, had no tennis background. They both graduated from Messalonskee – where Sadie would go if she attended public school – and Mike said the school didn’t even have a tennis team at the time. Mike played basketball and baseball, and Amy played basketball and field hockey.

"We both had kind of envisioned that Sadie would be a field hockey player or a basketball player like her mother," Mike said. "But she never really caught on to those sports. It was a very easy decision. She never really fell in line with the typical sports."

The long drives and flights to tournaments do put a dent in Sadie’s traveling fan base. Sadie’s friends have nothing to compare her to, so they can’t fully grasp what she does. If she won the state singles tournament – and Don Atkinson, one of the tournament directors, said she’d win so easily that it’s likely no other player would win even a single game against her – her friends would be able to take about an hour drive and watch her dominate in Lewiston.

But since Sadie’s itinerary for tournaments this fall and winter includes tournaments in Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and the Bahamas, her friends can’t see her do her thing, and consequently have no idea how good she is or how hard she’s working to get better.

"They think I just go out on the court and hit for a few minutes," Sadie said, laughing.

So how good is she?

College recruiters had the chance to contact her for the first time on Sept. 1. That day, Hammond’s inbox was loaded with e-mails from big-name schools, including some in the Ivy League.

"I don't think anyone should ever be as arrogant as to try to predict athletes' futures," said David Zeutas-Broer, the Player Development Manager with USTA New England. "It's guesswork. But I think she has a really good upside with her tennis future. She could be a high, high D-I level, for sure, with what she has already."

Zeutas-Broer describes Hammond as “an aggressive base-liner.” With her big serve, Hammond loves to hit the ball hard and go for points. This also helps her when playing doubles.

"The biggest difference for doubles is that my aggressive style really suits the game," Sadie said. "If you find someone who has the same game as you, it's like magic."

"She has a very good serve for her size," Zeutas-Broer said. "She's athletic, but she's slight. She has very sort of natural movement, so she creates power bigger than her size."

Sadie already owns a victory over Andie Daniell of Georgia, who is ranked 58th nationally among girls 18-and-under in the USTA singles rankings.

Of course, Sadie can attend college for a year or two and then decide to turn pro. Mike believes that the college experience makes a person more well-rounded, but he and Amy shrug when asked which path they prefer for Sadie, as casually as though they’re being asked by friends where they’d like to go to dinner that night.

"I don't care one way or the other, just facilitate her aspirations either way," Mike said.

Zeutas-Broer believes whether a player can turn pro and succeed at that level depends on many factors you can’t know unless you get inside the player’s head and own a crystal ball to boot. Will the player maintain his or her desire? Will the player’s body hold up?

"One of the biggest jumps players make from juniors to pros is their ability to problem-solve on the court," Zeutas-Broer said. "You can tell that's an area she's going to grow into. The players who do the best at that, they're going to go the furthest, because it's all about problem-solving."

As far as her attitude, Zeutas-Broer has what appears to be the prevailing opinion about Sadie: “She's a great kid, and she's a real credit to junior tennis in New England.”

By all accounts, Sadie works as hard as anyone. And as good as she is, there’s room to get much, much better.

"I think a big part of it is, you have to be really motivated," Sadie said. "You have to really want it. You just have to stick to it, I think, and hopefully, it will all work out."

Peters, Riley to join MIAA as assistant directors

August, 2, 2013
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The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) yesterday announced the hiring of James Peters and Rich Riley as part-time assistant directors.

Here is the full release, courtesy of communications director Nathan Bonneau:



Franklin, MA – James Peters and Richard Riley will join the MIAA team as part-time Assistant Executive Directors in mid-August. Recent retirements have afforded the MIAA an opportunity to utilize the many years of educational and athletic leadership that both James Peters and Richard Riley offer. These two leaders have worked with the MIAA for years, serving many different roles, to enhance the high school experience for student-athletes across the state.

James Peters retired as Principal from Monson High School in 2011 after a distinguished career as coach, teacher, guidance counselor, assistant principal and principal. Furthermore, Mr. Peters served as MIAA President from 2007-2009, MIAA Board of Directors from 2004-2011, State Basketball Committee Chairman from 2001-2011, and several other leadership positions within the MIAA throughout his career. In 2011 Mr. Peters was awarded the MIAA Distinguished Service Award and most recently, in 2012, he was awarded the Sherman A. Kinney Award. Each of these awards represents one of the highest honors the MIAA offers.

Richard Riley retired as Athletic Director from St. Peter-Marian Central Catholic Junior-Senior High School in 2012 after two years of service. Prior to this role, Mr. Riley worked at Marlborough High School as a coach, teacher, guidance counselor, assistant principal and athletic directorstarting in 1975. Mr. Riley brings his extensive knowledge of both athletic director training and coaches education instruction to the MIAA. During Mr. Riley’s tenure at both St. Peter-Marian Central Catholic Junior-Senior High School and Marlborough High School he has served on several MIAA committees, including Coaches Education Instruction and Educational Athletics, as well as hosted and managed MIAA tournament events.

James Peters, District F, and Richard Riley, District E, have long standing relationships in the western and central parts of the state, which will further improve the MIAA’s representation and service to all sections of Massachusetts. The additions of James Peters and Richard Riley will benefit the MIAA as they work collectively towards providing the best possible high school experience for the thousands of student-athletes, coaches, and school administrators in Massachusetts.


Bill Gaine named MIAA Executive Director

June, 12, 2013
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The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association has tapped former Deputy Executive Director Bill Gaine to replace Dick Neal as Executive Director, effective July 1.

Gaine had previously served as the MIAA's Deputy Executive Director from 1994 to June 2012.

The MIAA released the following statement on Gaine's appointment:



Franklin, MA June 12, 2013 - William N. Gaine, Jr., the former Deputy Executive Director of the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) and Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators' Association (MSSAA), has been chosen as the Executive Director of the two organizations. The announcement was made by Ann Knell, President of the MSSAA and Brian McCann, President of the MIAA who chaired the search committee to select a new leader.

Mr. Gaine succeeds Richard F. Neal who has served as Executive Director for 34 years. The appointment is effective July 1.

Mr. Gaine was formerly the Deputy Executive Director, a position he held from 1994 until June, 2012 when he retired. Following his retirement he continued to serve the two Associations in a part-time position.

"We had many excellent candidates express an interest in the Executive Director's position" Ms. Knell and Mr. McCann said. "However, Bill Gaine with his 34 years of experience was uniquely qualified. He will enable the two organizations to transition to a new leader without missing a beat. We are fortunate he decided to come back to full-time employment and accept this position."

Mr. Gaine joined the Associations as Assistant Executive Director in October, 1979 and has had major responsibility in the areas of student eligibility, as well as student/athlete health and safety initiatives over the years. He also had executive responsibility for all phases of management for most Association-sponsored sports.

The Presidents further stated that, "Bill Gaine has been an incredible leader of MIAA and MSSAA for almost their entire histories. There are few people indeed who could have had as much impact on more young people and their education than Bill has had in his more than three decades of leadership and service. He has positively impacted students, schools, and their leaders throughout the State and the Nation. Bill Gaine has earned a national reputation for vision, leadership, and determination to get the most and best out of every situation and person".

Mr. Gaine has been the architect and catalyst for the development and growth of the MIAA's Student Services Program which includes Sportsmanship, Wellness, Leadership, Community Service and Coaches' Education. The MIAA and Mr. Gaine have been recognized statewide and nationally for creating programming focused on student athletes that enrich their interscholastic experience through a curriculum of educational athletics.

Among the initiatives Mr. Gaine established to advance these programs are relationships and partnerships with the Anti-Defamation League, the Massachusetts Medical Society, the Governor's Alliance Against Drugs, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Partnership for a Drug-free America, and the Center of Sport at Northeastern University. Mr. Gaine founded the MIAA's Partners in Prevention, a network of over 65 prevention agencies in Massachusetts to assist schools with prevention and healthy lifestyle resources for students.

As Deputy Executive Director of the Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators' Association (MSSAA), the professional association of approximately 1,200 principals and assistant principals throughout Massachusetts, Bill has contributed to the remarkable growth of that organization since the 1970s.

A resident of Ashland, Mr. Gaine has served on the South Middlesex Regional Vocational Technical School committee for two decades. In addition, his community service at the local level has included several committee initiatives at Ashland High School, as well as years of service at coaching and administration for Ashland softball and baseball.


New England Roundup: Rhode Island

May, 31, 2013
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What do the boys’ lacrosse teams from La Salle Academy, East Greenwich and Smithfield have in common?

Rhode IslandEach team is undefeated and is in first place in its respective division and, not surprisingly, is the odds-on favorite to capture a state championship.

The Rams (10-0 in Division I and 12-0), who are coached by Colonel Steven McConnell, the Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police, boast an offense that’s off the charts.

Through matches of May 21, the Rams have out-scored their opponents by a margin of 202-65.

The story within the story is that La Salle attacks Brady O’Donnell and Joe Manown are the top two scorers in the state regardless of division.

O’Donnell, who’s a senior, has whipped home 56 goals and assisted on 33 while sophomore Manown has scored 49 goals and assisted on 38. What makes Manown’s proficiency all the more noteworthy is the fact he missed most of the 2012 season due to injury.

East Greenwich (13-0 in Division II and 13-2 overall), is riding the backs of 15 seniors who have played an integral role in the Avengers’ offense and defense.

Coach Brian Trapani’s team leads the division with 163 goals and has allowed a stingy total of 43.

Senior Colin Watikun and senior Colin Bernier lead the Avengers with 50 points apiece, Waitkun having scored 39 goals and assisted on 11 with Bernier having fired home 40 goals and assisted on 10.

Smithfield (12-0 in Division III and 12-2 overall) hasn’t lost a division game since the 2010 season.

Coach Joe Renzi’s Sentinels weren’t expected to be a contender since the team graduated 16 players from the 2012 squad. But attacks Brendan Benoit, Nick Gerlach and Matt Walker have led an offense that’s tied with Coventry in goals scored with 139.

MOUND KING
Team sport notwithstanding, the baseball program at Hendricken is heavily reliant on arguably the state’s best pitcher, senior Mike King who’s signed a letter of intent to play at Boston College.

King is a major reason why the Hawks lead Division I-North with a 16-0 record since he’s recorded an 8-1 record replete with 46 strikeouts and a mere six walks in 33 innings.

A right-hander, King didn’t allow his first earned run of the season until May 18 when Hendricken beat La Salle, 4-1. King spaced out six hits while going the distance – again.

King also helps himself at the plate with a batting average that’s hovered around .500 all season.

In a recent 5-1victory over Cranston West, King’s RBI single helped key a five-run first inning.

Another Hawk who’s been wielding a potent bat is John Toppa, grandson of the late Rogers High football coaching legend of the same name.

In a 4-3 victory over St. Raphael, Toppa’s fourth-inning double drove home the game-winning run. And in a 6-1 win over Cumberland, Toppa contributed a single, triple and two RBI.

Elsewhere:

* Central Falls pulled off the upset of the season regardless of division when the Warriors won their first game of the season – 5-2 over Division II-North leader Tolman (12-2). Emmanuel Antigua smacked a two-run single during a four-run fourth inning while Brandon Canuto went the distance for the victory. The loss sliced Tolman’s lead over second-place Scituate (13-3) to one game.

* North Kingstown’s Billy Young improved his record to 4-0 by blanking Toll Gate, 7-0, in a Division II-South game. Young allowed only two hits and fanned 10.

* East Providence’s Colin Costa collected two doubles, a single and five RBI as the Townies (14-1) held onto first place in Division II-Central by beating Mount Pleasant, 9-4. Teammate Colin Grant struck out 17 Kilties en route to the complete-game victory.

CLOSE SHAVE
Never let it be said that East Providence softball coach Rob Traverse isn’t true to his word.

A year ago, the Townies won only three of their first 12 games. Traverse made a “bet” with his players that if they won at least seven games this season he’d shave his head. They did and he did.

East Providence currently is in fifth place in the Division I with a 10-5 record – the Townies’ most impressive victory being a 2-0 blanking of North Kingstown (i.e. it was the Skippers’ first loss).

In that win over the Skippers, EP broke a scoreless tie in the eighth inning on Amy DeCastro’s single and Casey Traverse’s subsequent sacrifice fly.

In other games of note:

* Lincoln High to nobody’s surprise clinched the Division I title and the No. 1 seed in the upcoming state tournament by beating La Salle, 4-1. Lindsay Mayer allowed only one run on two hits for the 14-0 Lions.

* Division II-East leader Moses Brown (10-5) blanked Central, 6-0, in a crossover game as Emma Rantanen tossed a one-hitter – losing her bid for a no-hitter when Dianna Torres singled with two outs in the sixth.

ENTERING THE HALL
Even though Central Falls is the smallest city in the state, its high school has produced a host of outstanding athletes.

Nine will be inducted into the Central Falls Athletic Hall of Fame on October 11: former boys’ basketball coach Ed McVeigh plus athletes Albert Cardosa, Jeff Desautel, James Dougan, Brian Goodhart, Kevin Guindon, Carmen Pizarro, Russell Standring, Ken Vaudreuil and Kinga Dobrzychi-Zuromski.

Mike Scandura has been covering high school sports, college basketball, football and hockey plus minor league baseball in Rhode Island since the early 1970s. A native of Oswego, N.Y, he’s a member of the Words Unlimited Hall of Fame which is the statewide organization of sportswriters, sportscasters and sports publicists.

New England Roundup: Maine

May, 31, 2013
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On May 16, a Foxcroft batter was hit by a pitch in a game against Hermon. Within a couple weeks, Hermon had a new baseball coach.

MaineNumerous media outlets have suggested that those two events are related. According to the Bangor Daily News, Foxcroft led 7-1 in the fifth inning and needed four runs to end the game by the 10-run mercy rule.

With one out, Brooks Law put down a suicide squeeze to score Foxcroft's ninth run. Law reached first on the play, then stole second and third. The batter was hit by the next pitch.

"It did seem suspicious because they were clearly getting very frustrated and it felt like the pitcher really reared back and put something extra on that pitch," Foxcroft coach Mark Chevalier told the BDN.

Aaron Brideau is no longer Hermon's coach. Junior varsity coach Justin Perry coached the hawks in their final regular season game. In his article about the incident, BDN writer Ernie Clark wrote, "The coaching change is believed to be related to the circumstances involving a batter hit by a pitch" in the game in question.

NEW DEFINITION OF PITCHER'S PARK
Madison High completed an undefeated softball season Wednesday with a 7-2 victory over Oak Hill. The Bulldogs are 16-0, and will go in as the No. 1 seed in Western C.

One of Madison's stars is junior pitcher Emily McKenney. With McKenney leading the way, the Bulldogs allowed only 27 runs during the regular season.

But other than the undefeated record, the highlight of Madison's season was a recent home game against Oak Hill. In the top of the first inning, Oak Hill batter Jamie Prue noticed McKenney seemed unusually close. When somebody brought out a tape measure before the fourth inning, it was discovered that the pitcher's plate was 40 feet away, not the regulation 43 feet.

"I got up there," Prue told the Kennebec Journal, "and I remember I squared up to the plate, and I was like, 'She's on top of me.' Three feet is a big difference in softball, and obviously, it was very noticeable. I could tell just by how she was leaping out of the circle. It was unbelievable how close she was."

McKenney, who is a strong candidate for the Moluntain Valley Conference's Player of the Year award, said she believed the pitcher's plate had been at 40 feet all season.

"I definitely told my stepdad at other away games, 'I feel really far away when I pitch,'" McKenney told the KJ. "But I never thought anything of it."

It should be noted that McKenney has pitched -- and hit -- well in both home and road games this spring.

FRIEDLAND, LEAVITT WIN TENNIS SINGLES TITLES
Lincoln's Jordan Friedland defended his state singles title, but Falmouth's Olivia Leavitt upset No. 1 seed and defending champion Maisie Silverman of Brunswick in the state tennis singles tournaments.

Friedland, the No. 1 seed, lost a total of 14 games in his five matches during the tournament. He defeated No. 2 seed Brendan McCarthy of Falmouth, 6-3, 6-0, in the finals.

Silverman rolled through her first four matches, as she lost only six games combined. But in the finals, Leavitt posted a 6-1, 6-1 victory.

That matched appeared to turn in the third game of the first set. Silverman was trailing and appeared to hit a winner and yelled a short burst of encouragement to herself. But Leavitt returned the ball, and then complained that Silverman broke the rules by shouting during play. Silverman was given a warning, and Leavitt went on to win the next eight games.

"After that I feel like I wasn't as focused as I was in the beginning," Silverman told the BDN. "But she played really well. She really didn't miss a shot at all."

A happier moment came on the first day of the Round of 48. In a second-round match, Johnny Xue of George Stevens Academy was looking a match point for a straight-sets win. Xue retired at that point because he would have been unavailable for his third-round match two days later. That enabled York's Andrew LaMonica to advance to the next round, where he lost to McCarthy, 6-3, 6-3.

The lightest moment of the tournament came when North Yarmouth Academy's Burke Paxton outlasted Cape Elizabeth's Peter Higgins, 6-7 (6), 7-6 (3), 6-4 in a three-hour match.

After reporting the score, Paxton said to the tournament directors, in reference to his next match later that afternoon, "How long do I have? An hour? Let's push it to the last second possible."

MIAA announces Coach of the Year recipients

April, 11, 2013
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The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) has announced its recipients in each sport for its Coach of the Year awards. Each coach will be recognized at the third annual MIAA Coach of the Year/Student-­Athlete of the Month banquet on Wednesday, May 29.

Below are the winners:



Chris Gould, Amherst - Boys' Outdoor Track
Robert L'Homme, Bishop Feehan - Girls' Cross Country
Thomas Rivet, Chicopee - Boys Soccer
Donald Savi, Dedham - Girls Soccer
Chris Sweet, Duxbury - Boys Lacrosse
Friend Weiler, Duxbury - Girls Ice Hockey
Kirk Fredericks, LincolnSudbury - Baseball
Alyssa Schatzel, Masconomet - Girls Volleyball
Brenda Sullivan, Maynard - Field Hockey
Michael Kirby, Narragansett - Softball
Robert Ryan, New Bedford - Boys Tennis
Wayne Griffin, North Attleborough - Wrestling
Paul Worth, North Shore Tech - Football
Jose Rocha, Peabody - Boys' Cross Country
Shawn Thornton, Pope John XXIII - Girls Basketball
Jeff Nelson, Reading - Boys' Golf
Mark Pierce, St. Bernard's - Boys Basketball


Saugus officially moving to Cape Ann League

December, 17, 2012
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Last Friday, principals from the Northeastern Conference member schools voted to allow Saugus High to leave the conference, effective for the 2013-14 schools year, for the Cape Ann League.

Saugus High athletic director first confirmed the news Friday afternoon with a post on the Saugus Athletics Twitter account. The Sachems will become the 13th member of the league, essentially taking the place of North Andover, which left the CAL this year for the Merrimack Valley Conference.

Nelson issued a statement to the Boston-area media this afternoon candidly explaining the rationale:



I am pleased to announce that Saugus High School is the newest member of the Cape Ann League. This past Friday the Northeastern Conference principals voted to allow Saugus High School to leave the conference effective next fall. The Cape Ann League had already approved this move a week prior. Principal Joe Diorio and I both believe that being a member of the Cape Ann League is the best situation for our student-athletes and we are excited to start this endeavor.

Though we highly respect the Northeastern Conference, we feel the Cape Ann League is better suited for Saugus High School. The two major reasons for this historic decision are simple: size and competitiveness. As of today, SHS has 699 students and the average size of the schools in the CAL is 678 students; as opposed to the NEC, where the average size school is over 1200. SHS is a Division 3 school and 10 of the 12 schools in the CAL are Division 3; as opposed to the NEC, where 9 of the 12 schools are either Division 1 or Division 2. Based on this fact, SHS has not experienced a great deal of success during the regular season. In fact, SHS has won only 2 NEC Championships (lacrosse 2008 & softball 2011) over the past six years. Though the CAL is also a highly competitive conference, we believe SHS will experience more in-season success based on the parity of the league and the size of all the schools in the conference.

Over the past year I have been in constant conversations with my coaches regarding this possible move and I have been getting their feedback on the pros and cons for their individual programs. As the Athletic Director, it is my job, and my responsibility to do what is best for all the athletes in my program and not to focus on just one team. With this said, and to the contrary of what many believe, this move to the CAL is not a decision based solely on football, but rather a decision on what is best for our overall athletic program.

I have heard comments that this move is based around football; which although this move will help our football program, it is not the driving force. Again, this decision is based on what we believe is best for all our student-athletes! I understand there are issues for some programs based on their strong tradition, such as hockey, and I completely respect these concerns and the tradition. I have given my word to my coaches that we will continue to play such NEC schools that have strong traditions in specific sports; such as Winthrop, Beverly, and Danvers in hockey.

I also understand the concerns that there is more travel involved in playing in the CAL, which is true; but it is not as bad as one would think. Many of the CAL schools are directly located off of I95 and one would be able to get to these schools in the same time frame as many of the NEC schools. Yes, the distance is further,but the time to get there is equivalent.

Overall, I am very grateful to the NEC, the CAL, the Saugus School Committee, and the MIAA for allowing this opportunity for our student-athletes. I believe this change will have a positive influence on our athletic program, on the town and, most importantly it will be beneficial for the student-athletes at Saugus High School.


New England Roundup: Rhode Island

October, 24, 2012
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La Salle Academy moved into sole possession of first place in Division I without having to score a single point or make any tackles.

Rhode IslandInstead, the Rams might be inclined to send a “thank you” note to Portsmouth.

The Patriots pulled off the upset of the season in the state’s top division by belting previously undefeated and defending state champion Hendricken, 39-14, on Oct. 20.

As a result, the Rams (4-0) are the division’s only undefeated team while Hendricken (5-1) fell to second followed by Portsmouth (4-1) and Cranston East (3-1).

Obviously, if the Rams run the table they’ll earn the No. 1 seed in the Division I Tournament (the top four teams qualify for post-season play).

Portsmouth led by a tenuous 9-7 margin at halftime but erupted for 30 points in the third quarter.

Quarterback Bob Chavous was a one-man wrecking crew as he passed the Hawks dizzy by completing 14-of-20 passes for two touchdowns and zero interceptions. Matt Sewall led Portsmouth receivers with six receptions for 55 yards.

Chavous also led the Patriots ground game. He carried the ball 18 times for 170 yards and one touchdown.

The loss took some of the luster off Hendricken’s 21-14 victory over Cranston East on October 12.

Quarterback Patrick Gill snapped a 14-14 tie when he scored on a one-yard run with 2:02 left on the clock.

Cranston East hosts Hendricken on Friday night in what will be the key game in Division I this week.

ISLANDERS “STRAND” QUAKERS
In the previous six years Middletown has played in three Division IV Super Bowls (winning in 2006) and two Division III bowls (winning in 2010) – including 2011 when it was knocked off by Aquidneck Island rival Rogers.

The Islanders remained in contention for the top seed in the Division III Tournament by defeating Moses Brown, 35-13.

Connor Russ paced the Islanders (6-0) by scoring on runs of 18, 21 and 22 yards and combined with Randy Butler for just over 200 yards on the ground.

East Greenwich (4-0) is in second place – which means when the Avengers host the Islanders on November 12, first place and the top seed could (should?) be at stake.

PETERSON UNSTOPPABLE
Ponaganset (2-3) is in a five-team traffic jam for one of the last two playoff berths in Division III.

If the Chieftains qualify for the playoffs, it will be due in large part to the play of running back Scott Peterson.

Over his last two games, Peterson has been virtually unstoppable.

Peterson carried the ball 31 times for 269 yards and scored each of Ponaganset’s four touchdowns during a 27-0 blanking of Classical.

The previous week, in a 24-12 non-league victory over Toll Gate, Peterson shredded the Titans defense for 322 yards and five touchdowns – each of which was a school record.

KILTIES STATE THEIR CASE
Even though this is the campaign season, Mount Pleasant doesn’t need to take out an ad in local newspapers to state its case as perhaps the best team in Division IV.

The Kilties did their talking on a soggy field last weekend when they beat Smithfield, 35-6.

As a result, Mount Pleasant (5-0) is alone in first place, a half-game ahead of Hope (5-1).

The Kilties visit the Blue Wave on November 10 and can clinch the top seed for the playoffs with a victory.

Sophomore Stephen Young slogged his way to scoring runs of five and 67 yards while Joe Putu returned an interception 50 yards on the final play of the third quarter which set up a six-yard touchdown run by Montrell Hopper that put the game out of reach.

COMING UP ACES
The R.I.I.L. girls’ tennis season came to an end over the weekend when the state singles title plus three team championships were decided.

East Greenwich’s Alexsandra Drljaca dropped the first set to Smithfield’s Jenna LaBarre but rallied for a 4-6, 6-2, 6-1 victory in the singles finals – which made her the first Avenger female to win a state singles title.

Ironically, Drljaca had defeated LaBarre in three sets during a regular-season match.

La Salle put the finishing touches on an undefeated season (14-0) by blanking Mount St. Charles, 4-0, for the Division I team title.

The Rams, who now have captured four state titles, received three of their four points from their doubles teams: Emily Carranza and Caroline Dunn; Annie Venditti and Natalie Pitocco; and Briana Hanson and Caitlin Wrag.

Amanda Pitocco accounted for the lone singles point.

Portsmouth emulated La Salle by also wrapping up an undefeated season (14-0) by beating Classical, 4-0, in the Division II finals.

Julia Harrigan and Kathryn Harper prevailed in singles while the doubles teams of Taylor MacLeod and Caroline Farrow plus Jamie Hole and Paige Colman annexed the other two points.

Mount Hope rebounded from a 4-8 season in 2011 to capture the Division III team title, edging previously undefeated Coventry 4-3 in the finals.

With the match tied at 3-3, juniors Marisa Silva and Destinee DeSousa captured a three-set match at No. 1 doubles.

PASSAGES
Rhode Island lost one of its most ardent advocates for high school sports with the passing on October 24 of Pete Connell in his hometown of Smithfield.

For over two decades while writing for either The Observer or The Valley Breeze, Connell was a fixture at games involving teams in the western and northern parts of the state.

Connell was equally as respected as a high school baseball umpire.

As a testament to Connell, the entire Smithfield High boys’ soccer team paid their respects at his wake.

THE AXE FALLS
What had been on the drawing board became fact when East Providence’s state-appointed Budget Commission passed a $154-million budget that, among other things, eliminated sports at the city’s two middle schools.

At the moment, this is just a one-year cut. But that caveat notwithstanding, the loss of middle school sports should have a negative impact on East Providence High’s varsity sports (especially football, basketball and baseball), which will now be deprived of their feeder programs.

Mike Scandura has been covering high school sports, college basketball, football and hockey plus minor league baseball in Rhode Island since the early 1970s. A native of Oswego, N.Y, he’s a member of the Words Unlimited Hall of Fame which is the statewide organization of sportswriters, sportscasters and sports publicists.

New England Roundup: Rhode Island

June, 27, 2012
6/27/12
1:00
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In baseball, batting .300 is indicative of success. But what Hendricken has accomplished would short-circuit any computer.

Rhode IslandCoach Ed Holloway’s Hawks are “batting” .700 over the last 10 years because they captured their seventh Division I state championship over that span.

Altogether, Hendricken has won 17 state titles since 1977.

Hendricken almost made it look easy as it swept South Kingstown 12-2 (the game was called after five innings because of the Interscholastic League’s mercy rule) and 5-0 in the best-of-three finals.

Senior right-hander Tom Pannone, who’s signed a letter of intent to play for the University of Miami, went the distance on a one-hitter in the clincher – striking out 13 Rebels in the process.

The Hawks, who finished with a 23-2 overall record, never gave the Rebels a chance in Game 1 by building a 6-0 lead after three innings.

Bobby Indeglia, another senior, improved to 9-0 by allowing two runs on four hits (Hendricken did commit two errors).

Pannone, who plays the outfield when he isn’t pitching, singled and homered while junior Matt Murphy added three hits and five RBI.

PANTHERS MAUL CRUSADERS
Johnston won the 2011 Division II state title with a team that was loaded with seniors.

Understandably, the Panthers weren’t expected to repeat this season given the plethora of underclassmen on coach Steve DeMeo’s team.

Wrong! Johnston swept Prout 11-1 (in another mercy rule game) and 7-1 in the best-of-three finals.

Panther pitching dominated the series as Johnston finished with a 24-2 overall record.

Glen Bianchi allowed one run on one hit over six innings in Game 1 while James Picchi allowed one run on two hits while going the distance in Game 2. Picchi faced just two batters over the minimum and needed a mere 76 pitches to complete his assignment.

(Read full post)

Friday's MIAA tournament scores

June, 2, 2012
6/02/12
1:49
AM ET
BASEBALL
DIVISION 1 NORTH

Lincoln-Sudbury 10, Central Catholic 7
Lynn English 16, Waltham 0
Malden Catholic 6, Chelmsford 4

DIVISION 1 SOUTH
Attleboro 4, Dartmouth 3
Marshfield 3, Brookline 0
Silver Lake 7, North Attleborough 4
Taunton 4, Braintree 0

DIVISION 2 SOUTH
Nauset 9, Falmouth 5
Oliver Ames 5, Pembroke 4 (9 inn.)
Plymouth North 3, Stoughton 0

DIVISION 3 NORTH
Stoneham 11, Madison Park 6

DIVISION 3 SOUTH
Archbishop Williams 8, Norton 0
Dedham 9, Diman 1
Fairhaven 2, Canton 0
Middleboro 3, Medfield 0

DIVISION 4 SOUTH
Avon 6, Southeastern 5
Bristol-Plymouth 9, Marian 5
Cohasset 7, Millis 2
Harwich 8, Maimonides 0

SOFTBALL
DIVISION 1 NORTH

Chelmsford 9, Boston Latin 1
Revere 2, Lexington 0

DIVISION 1 SOUTH
Bishop Feehan 12, Natick 7
Mansfield 4, Braintree 3
Stoughton 5, Marshfield 4

DIVISION 2 NORTH
Newburyport 7, Burlington 6

DIVISION 2 SOUTH
Coyle-Cassidy 2, Middleboro 1
Dedham 2, Holliston 1
Medfield 4, Martha’s Vineyard 1
Norwell 7, Plymouth South 2

DIVISION 3 SOUTH
Avon 11, Millis 1
Archbishop Williams 7, Bristol-Plymouth 1
Case 9, Upper Cape 0
Greater New Bedford Voke 6, Harwich 1
Maimonides 5, Ursuline 2
Sacred Heart 9, South Shore Christian 0

BOYS' LACROSSE
DIVISION 1 EMASS

Duxbury 16, Framingham 3

DIVISION 2 EMASS
Catholic Memorial 13, Norwood 5
Concord-Carlisle 15, Wakefield 5
Foxborough 3, Reading 1
Medfield 12, Marblehead 7
Scituate 18, Falmouth 4
Winchester 8, Burlington 6

DIVISION 3 EMASS
Cohasset 16, Newburyport 15

GIRLS' LACROSSE
DIVISION 1 NORTH
Andover 14, Chelmsford 4
Lincoln-Sudbury 7, Framingham 6

DIVISION 1 SOUTH
Notre Dame (H) 18, Newton North 6

DIVISION 2 NORTH
Winchester 19, Danvers 1

DIVISION 2 SOUTH
Medfield 14, Norwell 10
Scituate 13, Sandwich 12

BOYS' TENNIS
DIVISION 1 NORTH

Andover 5, Chelmsford 0
Concord-Carlisle 5, Methuen 0

DIVISION 1 SOUTH
BC High 3, King Philip 2
Bridgewater-Raynham 5, North Attleborough 0
Dartmouth 4, Mansfield 1

DIVISION 2 NORTH
Beverly 3, Malden Catholic 2
Boston Latin 4, Marblehead 1
Burlington 5, Medford 0
Danvers 4, Central Catholic 1
Gloucester 5, North Andover 0
Reading 5, Belmont 0

DIVISION 2 SOUTH
Duxbury 5, Randolph 0
Fairhaven 4, Plymouth North 1
Falmouth 3, Bishop Feehan 2
Foxborough 4, Dedham 1
Medfield 5, Somerset-Berkley 0
Sandwich 4, Walpole 1
Scituate 5, Holliston 0

DIVISION 3 SOUTH
Canton 3, Old Rochester 2
Cape Cod Academy 5, Cardinal Spellman 0
Hanover 3, Norwell 2

GIRLS' TENNIS
DIVISION 1 NORTH

Lincoln-Sudbury 5, Central Catholic 0
Newton South 5, Methuen 0

DIVISION 1 SOUTH
Falmouth 3, North Quincy 2
King Philip 3, Mansfield 2
Needham 5, Marshfield 0
North Attleborough 4, Newton North 1
Taunton 4, Natick 1

DIVISION 2 NORTH
Cambridge 5, Medford 0
Concord-Carlisle 5, Beverly 0
Marblehead 5, Wakefield 0
Reading 4, Burlington 1

DIVISION 2 SOUTH
Bishop Stang 5, Fontbonne 0
Hingham 5, Silver Lake 0
Medfield 4, Sandwich 1
Scituate 5, Bishop Feehan 0
Sharon 5, Apponequet 0
Somerset-Berkley 3, Canton 2

DIVISION 3 NORTH
Bedford 5, Notre Dame 0
North Reading 3, Bishop Fenwick 2

DIVISION 3 SOUTH
Carver 4, Harwich 1
Dedham 3, Archbishop Williams 2
Fairhaven 4, Westport 1
Martha’s Vineyard 5, Seekonk 0
Norwell 3, Dover-Sherborn 2
Ursuline 3, Sturgis 2

BOYS' VOLLEYBALL
DIVISION 1 NORTH

Methuen 3, St. John’s Prep 0

DIVISION 1 SOUTH
Newton North 3, Needham 0
Newton South 3, North Quincy 1

DIVISION 1 CENTRAL
Milford 3, Xaverian 0

New England Roundup: Rhode Island

May, 31, 2012
5/31/12
6:17
PM ET
In 1955 the late, great comedic actor Peter Sellers made a movie titled “The Mouse That Roared.”

Rhode IslandIf the Rhode Island Interscholastic League should decide to make a high school baseball version of a sequel it should be named “The Cougars That Roared.”

With an enrollment of barely 500 male students, North Providence is near the bottom of the R.I.I.L. when it comes to sports. But the Cougars sure know how to play baseball.

Not only did coach Dean Garganese’s team capture the Division I championship with a 17-1 record, but the Cougars also earned the No. 1 seed in the 16-team, double-elimination Division I state tournament.

The Cougars got off on the right paw by mauling 16th-seeded Lincoln, 8-3, in an opening round game.

Mike Corin (three hits and two RBI), Nick DiDino (two-run single) and Tyler Proulx (two hits, one RBI) paced the attack as North Providence moved into the winners’ bracket.

North Providence annexed the top seed by blanking Moses Brown, 2-0, in its regular-season finale as Corin blanked the Quakers for six innings and Dillon McCluskie pitched a perfect seventh for the save.

In other first-round games:
* No. 2 Hendricken (the Hawks beat the Cougars two years ago in the finals) beat No. 15 East Greenwich, 7-2, as Bill Walker belted a solo homer and Tom Pannone (who’s signed a letter of intent to play his college ball at the University of Miami) allowed two runs on five hits over six innings.

* No. 14 Chariho upset No. 3 North Kingstown, 5-3, as Jacob Marchessault went the distance on a five-hitter. With the scored tied at 3 in the top of the seventh, Jim Paquette drilled a two-run single for the Chargers.

* No. 4 South Kingstown edged No. 13 Warwick Vets, 3-2, as Nick Hayes plated all of the Rebels’ runs with two hits.

* No. 5 La Salle blanked No. 12 Pilgrim, 3-0, with Caleb Gardner and Tyler Drainville combining for 12 strikeouts. The Rams scored their runs in the third on RBI doubles by Jesse Lee, Frank DiMato and Pat Burns.

* No. 11 Coventry knocked off No. 6 Cranston East, 5-1 as Matt Laferriere went the distance on a six hitter and fanned eight in the process.

* No. 7 Portsmouth routed No. 10 Cranston West, 10-0, with Matt Peters homering to key a 13-hit attack.

* No. 8 Cumberland had to work “overtime” to dispatch No. 9 Middletown, 1-0, in 12 innings. Ryan Harris led the last of the 12th with a single, advanced to third on a wild pickoff throw and scored the only run on a wild pitch.

(Read full post)

MIAA taps Pearson for Associate Exec. Director

February, 7, 2012
2/07/12
12:12
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The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletics Association officially announced this morning that they have tapped Medway High School Principal Richard Pearson as its next Associate Executive Director. He will begin July 1 and replace outgoing Deputy Executive Director Bill Gaine, who is set to retire at the end of June.

Here is the MIAA's official release, courtesy of Media Relations director Nathan Bonneau:



Richard L. Pearson, currently principal of Medway High School, has been named Associate Executive Director of the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) and the Massachusetts Secondary Schools Administrators’ Association (MSSAA). He will assume his new position in June.

He will succeed William N. Gaine Jr., the long time Deputy Executive Director, who will retire on June 30, 2012.

In making the announcement, Richard F. Neal, Executive Director, said, “Richard has been an active member of our two associations for many years and is well informed on the mission, responsibilities and operations of both organizations. The fact that his peers elected him to serve as MSSAA President this year is testimony to the respect he has among the educational community as a leader.”

With the MIAA, Mr. Pearson has served on many committees, including the Tournament Management Committee and Lacrosse Committee, and is currently serving as Chair of the District C Athletic Committee.

Mr. Pearson was named principal at Medway H.S. in August, 2004. Among his many accomplishments in that position was supervising the opening of a new school. He was assistant principal at Foxborough H.S. from June, 2000 to August, 2004.

A musician by education, he holds a Bachelor in Music Education degree from The Ohio State University. He began his teaching career as Band Director in Walpole and later in Medfield. He holds a Masters in Education degree from Bridgewater State College and is currently in the process of completing course work in the doctoral program at Northeastern University.

Mr. Gaine joined the Associations as Assistant Executive Director in October, 1979 and has had major responsibility in the areas of student/athlete health and safety initiatives over the years. He also had executive responsibility for all phases of management for most Association-sponsored sports with current oversight for ice hockey, football and baseball. He was promoted to his present position in 1994.

Mr. Gaine has been the architect and catalyst for the development and growth of the MIAA’s Student Services Program which includes Sportsmanship, Wellness, Leadership, Community Service and Coaches’ Education. The MIAA and Mr. Gaine have been recognized statewide and nationally for creating programming focused on student athletes that enrich their interscholastic experience through a curriculum of educational athletics.



New England Roundup: Connecticut

January, 12, 2012
1/12/12
7:03
PM ET
Temple coach Steve Addazio's familiarity with the football landscape in Connecticut has paid off this month, when Temple received verbal commitments from two former Connecticut high school standouts: running back Montrell Dobbs (Ansonia) and 6-foot-1, 215-pound linebacker Tyler Matakevich (St. Joseph).

ConnecticutBoth Dobbs and Matakevich graduated from high school in 2011, and played prep school football at Milford Academy in New Berlin, N.Y., last season.

Addazio is a Connecticut native who played at Central Connecticut State (1978-81) and coached at Cheshire High School (1988-94).

Dobbs originally committed to Connecticut, but could not gain admission because of an academic issue. He said he thought about playing for Marshall, until Temple entered the picture. He met with Addazio and Temple assistant coach Sean McGowan last Friday. Temple extended a scholarship offer Tuesday.

“I really didn't have to think about it much, especially since Tyler and I have become good friends and he's going there,” Dobbs said. “I wanted to stay closer to home anyway. I was a good fit for me.”

Dobbs rushed for 3,445 yards and scored 45 touchdowns during his senior season at Ansonia. He was Milford Academy's offensive MVP last season.

Dobbs said he may be a partial qualifier and not allowed to play next season.

“I don't know if I'm going to be playing this year,” he said. “I'm gonna find that out. All I know is I'm definitely going to school at Temple.”

An injury forced Matakevich to miss the first five games of his senior season, when he helped St. Joseph win the second of back-to-back Class S championships. St. Joseph beat a Dobbs-led Ansonia team 49-28 to win the 2010 championship. Matakevich scored four touchdowns in that victory.

Matakevich was a two-time all-state selection who caught Temple's eye at a postseason college combine.

“I love everything about Temple,” Matakevich told the Connecticut Post. “I'm so happy to finally get this done after all that hard work. It's finally paid off.”

(Read full post)

Early signing period is here

November, 9, 2011
11/09/11
11:40
AM ET
The NCAA's National Letter of Intent early signing period kicks off today, and runs through November 16. Below is a list of area student-athletes who are either committed or are expected to sign LOI's over the next week. Any commitment news can be sent to Brendan Hall at bhall@espnboston.com or Scott Barboza at sbarboza@espnboston.com

BOYS BASKETBALL
Zach Auguste, New Hampton (N.H.) – Notre Dame
Anthony Barry, Brooks – Merrimack
Domonique Bull, Tilton (N.H.) – Missouri
Jesse Chuku, Kimball Union (N.H.) – Lehigh
Dimitry Coronel, Tabor Academy – Maine
Evan Cummins, Northfield-Mt. Hermon - Harvard
Kris Dunn, New London (Conn.) – Providence
Tevin Falzon, Winchendon – Sacred Heart
Eric Green, St. Mark’s – Holy Cross
Olivier Hanlan, New Hampton (N.H.) – Boston College
Ryan Hartung, Philips Andover – St. Anselm
Cedric Kuakumensah, St. Andrew’s (R.I.) – Brown
Jake Layman, King Philip – Maryland
Connor Mahoney, Brooks – Le Moyne
Mitch McGary, Brewster Academy (N.H.) – Michigan
Georges Niang, Tilton (N.H.) – Iowa State
Ethan O’Day, Northfield-Mt. Hermon – Vermont
John Papale, Choate Rosemary Hall (Conn.) – Boston University
Timahj Parker-Rivera, St. Joseph’s (Conn.) – Towson
Nik Stauskas, St. Mark’s – Michigan
Terry Tarpey, Fairfield Prep (Conn.) – William & Mary
Kaleb Tarczewski, St. Mark’s – Arizona
Aaron Thomas, Brewster Academy (N.H.) – Florida State
T.J. Warren, Brewster Academy (N.H.) – NC State

GIRLS BASKETBALL
Elizabeth Belanger, Acton-Boxborough – New Hampshire
Nicole Boudreau, Andover – Boston College
Jen Gonsalves, Harwich – UMass-Lowell
Shannon Holt, Wachusett - Bridgeport
Bri Schnare, Wachusett – Manhattan
Lexi Sells, Bishop Feehan – Providence
Brooke Stewart, Masconomet - Boston University
Dana Theobald, West Springfield – Boston University
Blake Underhill, Ashland - Manhatten
Ariel Ward, East Longmeadow – LaSalle

BASEBALL
Bradley Applin, Malden - Rhode Island
Charlie Butler, Nashoba – Maine
Dan Cellucci, Lincoln-Sudbury – Bryant
Thomas Crispi, Roxbury Latin – Columbia
Pat Delano, Braintree - Vanderbilt
Terry Dugdale, Souhegan (N.H.) – Albany
Tim Duggan, Xaverian – Fairfield
Dan Dymecki, Wellesley – Lafayette
Connor Fuller, Auburn – Fordham
Bobby Indeglia, Bishop Hendricken (R.I.) – Holy Cross
John Jennings, Newton South – UMass
Jake Levine, Belmont Hill – Brown
Mike Marshall, Maynard – Bryant
Buck McCarthy, Everett – Stetson
Graham McIntire, Concord (N.H.) – Marist
Sam McKay, Weymouth – Hartford
Bob Melley, BC High – UConn
Steve Moyers, East Longmeadow – Rhode Island
Willy Nastasi, Barnstable – UConn
John Nicklas, St. Sebastian’s – Boston College
Steve O’Neil, East Longmeadow – UConn
Ryan O’Shea, Oliver Ames – Central Michigan
Tom Pannone, Bishop Hendricken (R.I.) – Miami
Connor Perry, Central Catholic – Holy Cross
Curtis Pomeroy, St. John’s (Shrewsbury) – Georgetown
Derek Reed, Lowell - St. Rose
Vinny Scifo, Wilmington – UMass
Ian Searles, Wareham - Southern New Hampshire
Chris Shaw, Lexington – Boston College
Ryan Summers, Westfield – Louisville
Max Tishman, Lawrence Academy – Wake Forest
Matt Tulley, Lowell – Virginia Tech
Rhett Wiseman, BB&N – Vanderbilt
A.J. Zarozny, St. John’s (Shrewsbury) – Bryant

FIELD HOCKEY
Katherine McManus, Thayer -Notre Dame
Kim Sportack, Thayer - Richmond

BOYS' GOLF
Nick Pandalena, St. John's Prep - Boston College

BOYS' ICE HOCKEY
Desmond Bergin, Tri-City/St. Sebastian’s (Natick, Mass.) - Harvard
Nick Bligh, Dexter School (Milton, Mass.) - Dartmouth
Cam Brown, N.H. Jr. Monarchs (Natick, Mass.) – Maine
Cam Darcy, Dexter School (South Boston, Mass.) – Northeastern
Connor Dempsey, Westside/Rivers School (Winthrop, Mass.) – Dartmouth
Tim Driscoll, Phillips Andover/Hingham H.S. (Hingham, Mass.) – Holy Cross
Chris Eiserman, Nainamo (West Newbury, Mass.) – UMass-Lowell
Alex Gacek, Youngstown (Dracut, Mass.) – Miami
Brian Harris, Junior Bruins (Bridgewater, Mass.) – Maine
Marc Hetnik, Vernon (BCHL) / Catholic Memorial (Brookline, Mass.) - Boston University
Cody Learned, Junior Bruins (Amherst, N.H.) – Yale
Joey McNamara, Belmont Hill (Chestnut Hill, Mass.) – Holy Cross
Rob O’Gara, Milton Academy (Massapequa, N.Y.) – Yale
Joe Prescott, South Shore Kings/St. Sebastian’s (Norwell, Mass.) – Brown
Brendan Silk, U.S. NTDP/ Austin Prep (Wakefield, Mass.) – Boston College
Caston Sommer, Bismarck (Shrewsbury, Mass.) – Holy Cross
Devin Tringale, Lawrence Academy (Medford, Mass.) – Harvard
Frankie Vatrano, U.S. NTDP (East Longmeadow, Mass.) – Boston College
Mike Vecchione, Malden Catholic (Saugus, Mass.) – UNH
Jim Vesey, South Shore Kings/Belmont Hill (North Reading, Mass.) – Harvard
Shane Walsh, Dubuque/South Shore Kings (West Roxbory, Mass.) – UMass-Amherst

GIRLS' ICE HOCKEY
Melissa Piacentini, Thayer - Syracuse

BOYS’ LACROSSE
Luke Aaron, Deerfield Academy – Duke
Ian Andrey, Deerfield Academy - Harvard
Kevin Blair, Hingham, Providence
Henry Buonagurio, Duxbury – Drexel
James Burke, Duxbury – Penn State
Andrew Buron, Duxbury - Stony Brook
Chris Coady, BB&N - Duke
Seamus Connelly, Duxbury - Duke
Jack Connolly, St. Sebastian’s – Dartmouth
Sean Connors, Deerfield Academy - Princeton
Danny Czerkawski, Landmark, High Point
Connor Darcey, Wellesley – Penn State
Sam Davis, Governor’s Academy – Penn State
Bob Fahey, Bishop Guertin (N.H.) - UMass Amherst
Blair Freidensohn, St. John’s Prep - Dartmouth
Doug Gouchoe, Concord-Carlisle – Air Force
Keegan Hayes, BC High, UMass-Amherst
Paul Hellar, Duxbury – Fairfield
Kurt Hunziker, Masconomet – UMass-Amherst
Joe Kruy, Phillips Andover – Duke
Jonathan Lee, Hopkinton – Yale
Jay McDermott, Duxbury – Syracuse
Dan MacDougall, Avon Old Farms - University of Delaware
Reilly Naton, Duxbury – Yale
Cabot Noyce, Xaverian – High Point
Matt O’Keefe, Duxbury – Johns Hopkins
Joey Pasquale, Weston – Hartford
Nick Price, Brewster Academy - Vermont
Max Randall, Duxbury - Dartmouth
Will Ryan Avon Old Farms - Johns Hopkins
Ryan Scheib, Xaverian – Bryant
Dan Shaughnessy, Lincoln-Sudbury, Stony Brook
Dickson Smith, Dover-Sherborn/Holderness – Virginia
Greg Stamatov, Foxborough – Villanova
Finn Sullivan, Roxbury Latin – UMass-Amherst
Paul Tocci, Lincoln-Sudbury – Army
J.C. Vivian, Governor’s Academy – Georgetown
Jake Vogl, Aquinas Institute) - Hartford
Sam Washburne, St. Sebastian's, Hobart
Henry West, Darien (Conn.), Cornell
Chase Williams, Rivers School – Vermont
Chris Williams, Duxbury - Quinnipiac

GIRLS' LACROSSE
Madison Acton, Lincoln-Sudbury – Duke
Shelby Aubin, Needham – Georgetown
Olivia Boudreau, North Andover - George Washington
Shelby Boudreau, North Andover - Oregon
Hadley Brooke, Middlesex School – Northwestern
Julia Burns, Middlesex School – Stanford
Emma Dagres, Weston – Vanderbilt
Louisa del Rio, Pingree (Hamilton, Mass.) – Boston University
Natalie Devine, Fontbonne Academy – High Point
Kelsey Duryea, Governor’s Academy – Duke
Anne Farnham, Andover – UMass-Amherst
Kate Farnham, Andover- UMass-Amherst
Ally Fazio, Andover – UConn
Hope Hanley, Noble & Greenough – Dartmouth
Emmy Horton, Duxbury – Fairfield
Christine Johnson, Reading - Albany
Jenna Liljeberg, King Philip – Sacred Heart
Molly McNamara, Wellesley - Navy
Julia Meehan, Weston - High Point
Kathryn Riley, King Philip – Boston College
Rachel Sexton, Lincoln-Sudbury – Notre Dame
Gabriella Starkey, St. Mark’s – Dartmouth

SOFTBALL
Kiara Amos, Malden - Providence
Taylor Archer, Milford - URI
Patty Borges, Coyle-Cassidy - Stony Brook
Meg Carnase, King Philip – Colgate
Brianna Chiusano, Mansfield - Coastal Carolina
Lexi Gifford, Natick - UConn
Olivia Godin, King Philip – UMass-Amherst
Cayleigh McCarthy, King Philip – Stonehill
Meghan Rico, King Philip – George Washington

GIRLS' SOCCER
Lindsey O’Neil, Thayer -Fairfield
Jessica Valenti, North Reading - URI

BOYS' SWIMMING AND DIVING
Ryan Palmer, King Philip - Gardner Webb

GIRLS' SWIMMING AND DIVING
Juliana Melchionda, Thayer - Clemson
Stephanie Nasson, King Philip - Boston University

GIRLS' TENNIS
Ali Sullivan, Needham - Providence College

New England Roundup: Rhode Island

November, 2, 2011
11/02/11
6:02
PM ET
Is there any sports fan who hasn’t heard that cliché’ “picking up the slack?”

Rhode IslandThat’s exactly what Division I leader La Salle Academy did on October 28 when the Rams overcame the loss of quarterback Anthony Francis, who was sidelined with an ankle injury, and still throttled playoff contender Cranston West, 30-6.

Junior running back Josh Morris certainly picked up the slack in his teammate’s absence by scoring on touchdown runs of 22 and 51 yards in the first half as the Rams remained on top with a 6-0 record.

La Salle also received a lift from backup quarterback Jack Collins who came off the bench and scored on runs of two yards and one yard.

As a result, La Salle has outscored its six division opponents by a hefty margin of 234-86 and is in position to run the table which would enable coach Geoff Marcone’s team to clinch the division title and the top seed in the upcoming playoffs.

But as is frequently the case, the title and the No. 1 seed won’t be decided until Thanksgiving Day when the Rams play arch-rival East Providence (4-1) in the state’s longest-running series on that holiday.

The Townies ventured to Massachusetts last weekend and were blanked, 26-0, by Foxborough in a non-league game – due in large part to the fact they committed seven turnovers. But the previous weekend, East Providence moved into title contention by beating third-place Hendricken (4-2), 35-14, as quarterback Brandon Peters threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to Victor Adewoski and ran for a pair of touchdowns.

Should East Providence and La Salle enter their Thanksgiving game still ranked 1-2 in the standings and if the Townies win which would force a tie, they would earn the No. 1 seed based on the first tiebreaker (record in head-to-head competition).

(Read full post)

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