Westmoreland says goodbye
It was sad, if inevitable, news Wednesday that Ryan Westmoreland announced his retirement from baseball after attempting a comeback from a second major brain surgery.
Despite a big-money contract out of Portsmouth (R.I.) High School — he earned a $2 million signing bonus — Westmoreland could not have been a classier, more friendly and helpful athlete during my time covering him with the Lowell Spinners. He was also the picture of strength during an interview five months after his first brain surgery.
With his life-threatening battle, it’s easy to forget just how good Westmoreland was. He was rated the top prospect in the entire Red Sox organization by Baseball America going into the 2010 season, after hitting .296 with seven homers and 35 RBIs with Lowell. Sadly, that was his only minor league season.
His season was cut short due to a broken collarbone he suffered running into the left field fence, an impact Lowell Spinners personnel swears left a large dent in the LeLacheur Park wall.
Fazio off with a bang
Former Andover High two-sport star Ally Fazio’s college lacrosse career is off to an impressive start.
The University of Connecticut freshman has started all four games for the Huskies this season as a midfielder, and has three goals and one assist. UConn currently sits at 4-0.
This time of year always has been a good one for Fazio. Last March she celebrated her third straight Division 1 state title as a member of the Andover High basketball team.
Cardarelli shines on
Haverhill singer Jillian Cardarelli continues to wow sports fans. Yesterday, she sang the national anthem before the Baltimore Orioles vs. Toronto Blue Jays spring training game in Sarasota, Fla. She will be back in Boston to sing for the Bruins in April.
There was a frightening moment in Wednesday’s New Hampshire hockey semifinal between Londonderry and Manchester Central when a shot sailed over the glass and into a packed section of fans.