Several area athletes were named All-America Scholar-Athletes by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association. Softball players need to have earned at least a 3.50 GPA for the school year.
Among them were UMass Lowell sophomore Brianna Martin (liberal arts) from Methuen and Central Catholic, who earned a 3.85 GPA and also made the NE-10 All-Rookie team. Also, Keene State’s junior Samantha Nitso of Londonderry (computer science) and sophomore Stephanie Long of Salem (elementary education).
Sad to hear of the death of Al Lanni Saturday at age 63. The former North Andover High athlete was a well-known umpire and was the head football coach at Stoneham High for 11 years. He later was an assistant football coach at Merrimack.
Got a big chuckle from the ad optometrist Dr. Michael Onyon of the Salem Vision Center ran over the weekend in The Eagle-Tribune. It read in part, “Eye exams for major league umpires and Red Sox fans who want to see the game.”
Onyon, a graduate of Haverhill High and Merrimack College, must be able to, pardon the pun, see into the future. After the ad ran, Red Sox and Cardinal fans fumed over a series of controversial calls in the World Series.
King’s (Pa.) College senior Ron Garrett, a 6-1, 247-pound lineman, scored a defensive touchdown in five straight games.
Former standouts Ashley McLaughlin of Andover and Beth Godfrey of Haverhill were two of the long list of former players, coaches and managers to sign a letter in support of Bill Gibbons. He is the 29th-year Holy Cross women’s basketball coach who is being sued by a former player who claimed he was physically and emotionally abusive.
little big man
My favorite college football play last weekend was a seemingly pedestrian 1-yard run late in a blowout. But what made it special was Rice sophomore walk-on running back Jayson Carter is just 4-foot-9, 135 pounds.
Salem Hall of Famer Charlie Samataro passed along an interesting story about how Salem got its nickname.
“In 1952-53 we elected to be the Blue Devils. That was my class. Salem’s Woodbury High never had a nickname since it opened up in 1925 until then,” he said.
The Andover-Lowell football classic in 2010, which was won by Andover 88-82, was an 8-overtime game. This fall in Wisconsin, Oconomic beat Wisconsin Lutheran 84-82 and that was in regulation! What’s even more stunning was the score was just 8-7 after one quarter.
North Andover connection
New UConn hockey coach Mike Cavanaugh recruited the son of his ex-North Andover High teammate Ed Ronan. Ed’s son, Corey Ronan, a star at St. Sebastian’s, recently committed to UConn.
Got a kick out of this from the New London (Conn.) Day’s fine columnist Mike DiMauro.
“There are cadets at Coast Guard Academy named Oswald and Ruby. No, really. Alex Oswald is a football player and Sam Ruby is a senior. No word on whether they’ve ever been seen in Dallas at the same time. But Oswald was born in Irving, Tex., a Dallas suburb.”
Follow Michael Muldoon on Twitter under the screen name @MullyET.