EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Sports

December 26, 2013

Wish list: artificial fields, add more NH-Mass. battles ...

Yes, I know it’s past Christmas, but now is the best time to reveal my latest wish list for local sports.

It might have made more sense to publish it before Christmas, but consider me superstitious. To me, it’s like keeping your wish secret before blowing out the candles on a cake. If you don’t, there’s little chance it’ll come true.

Without further delay, let’s get right to it.

I wish Salem and Pinkerton would install artificial turf on their football fields. It would benefit all of the ball-playing outdoor sports and be a boon to the entire southern New Hampshire area. Sure, it’s expensive but the fields eventually pay for themselves though lower maintenance and rental fees.

I wish the athletic directors and wrestling coaches would put more of a push to bring the New England Tournament back to the Merrimack Valley where it belongs. There is no better wrestling here, it’s centrally located and it’d be a big draw.

A few years ago, Lawrence athletic director Tim Finn made a good case to bring it here and he was almost successful. The ADs of Lawrence, Methuen and North Andover should get together and state their case.

There’s just no sense in holding the tournament in Providence, where it will be this year, much less New Haven.

Here’s a wish that makes sense and would be much simpler to bring about; Why don’t the indoor track teams in southern New Hampshire start running meets against the MVC schools, or even among themselves, at Lawrence, Methuen and Andover? It would involve less travel and, as in other sports, be a good way to compare the top athletes in the Merrimack Valley area.

Here’s another wish that definitely should happen; There should be complete bleachers on both sides of the field for Windham football. It’s a top-flight program and deserves a better facility for its fans.

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