---- — NATIONAL CHAMPS!
Amherst College defeated Mary Hardin-Baylor, 87-80, to capture the NCAA Division 3 men’s basketball national championship yesterday in Atlanta.
It was the Lord Jeffs’ third trip to the title game. Coached by Andover product David Hixon, they last won the national championship in 2007.
“It’s hard right now to even put into words,” Hixon said, “and I’ve been through this once before. It’s really hard, where this team came from and where it ended up.”
Allen Williamson scored 18 points, and Connor Green and national player of the year Aaron Toomey added 16 each, helping the Lord Jeffs (30-2) push their season-ending winning streak to a school-record 24 games, and match the Amherst record for victories in a season.
Senior captain Peter Kaasila of Plaistow ended his career in style with the title win, scoring six points and hauling down seven rebounds in his 22 minutes of work.
Salem’s Terry Doyle got his season off solid footing, tossing 6.1 innings of shutout ball for the Triple A Pawtucket Red Sox in a 6-2 win at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
The two-time Eagle-Tribune Baseball MVP allowed only one hit, a bunt single, walking five and striking out five in his debut with the organization.
Barring any rain during the week, Doyle (1-0) will next see action on the hill, Friday night at McCoy Stadium in Rhode Island.
High school baseball fans looking for a solid early-season measuring stick might want to head over to Merrimack College today at 3:30. It will be St. John’s Prep coming to town to battle Central Catholic in a tremendous non-league test.
WARRIORS SHINE IN PRO DAY
Merrimack College hosted some of the top football talent in New England on Friday during its “Pro Day.”
“It says a lot about the state of the Merrimack Football program when you have pro prospects from Division I programs like Boston College, Harvard University, and Northern Iowa attending our Pro Day,” said first year head coach Dan Curran. “Not many programs in the country at the Division II level are in position to host their own Pro Day on campus, and we have been fortunate enough to do it for the last two years.”
Chris Simms from the New England Patriots ran the drills throughout the day’s events, which included height/weight check in, vertical jump, broad jump, bench press, 40 yard dash, individual workouts and positional drill workouts. Other scouts in attendance were Bob Kronenberg from the Atlanta Falcons and Jay Muraco from the Kansas City Chiefs.
Warrior wide receiver Isaiah Voegeli and offensive lineman Kevin Marks were among the participants, trying to catch someone’s attention with the draft approaching on April 25-27.
“It was an absolute honor to represent Merrimack College in its second-ever NFL Pro Day,” said Voegeli. “Shawn Loiseau made it possible for me to work out in front of NFL scouts after his impressive Pro Day last year at Merrimack and his success at the next level. This whole process has been unbelievable and I am very blessed to partake in an event like this. After today, I am one step closer to achieving my dreams of playing in the NFL and I could not be happier.”