EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

February 4, 2013

Sports in a minute

Christopher Smith
The Eagle-Tribune

---- — HONORING VAN

The Pinkerton girls basketball team is honoring the late Ralph Van Nostrand, who coached the Astros boys volleyball team for seven years (61-45 record) and also was the announcer at Pinkerton home football games and the timekeeper during school basketball and hockey games.

The team is wearing “VAN” patches on their uniform in his honor.

Van Nostrand died Jan. 21, 2012 at just 60 years old.

“I would go fishing with him,” Pinkerton girls basketball coach John Barry said. “He was a real good friend of mine.”

BEANPOT TODAY

The first day of the Beanpot is today at the TD Garden.

Semifinal 1 has Boston University going against Northeastern at 5 p.m. Semifinal 2 has Boston College squaring off against Harvard at 8 p.m. Both games are on NESN (Channel 51).

DA COSTA UPDATE

Former Merrimack star hockey player Stephane Da Costa has nine goals and 15 assists (24 points) in 31 games for the Binghamton Senators.

DON’T QUIT YOUR DAY JOB

Former NFL quarterback and current San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh appeared on an episode of “Saved by the Bell: The New Class.”

He played himself and apparently was Screech’s cousin in an episode titled “Little Hero,” which aired in 1996.

Harbaugh is not the first NFL player to appear on “Saved by the Bell.”

Former New England Patriot Bob Golic was a main character on “Saved By The Bell: The College Years.” Golic’s brother brother is Mike Golic, co-host of ESPN’s Mike and Mike in the Morning radio show.

BAKER FOLLOWED SISTER

A couple of weeks ago, there was an article in The Eagle-Tribune sports section on Andover resident April Baker, a talented gymnast who signed a letter of intent with Rutgers University.

Interestingly, Baker’s sister Cortni Baker, who is two years younger than April, was involved with gymnastics before April.

“She started before me, which is kind of funny,” April said. “She’d be at home doing cartwheels and I guess I wanted to be with her in the same sport. So that’s how I started.”

April has no idea why Cortni started the sport before her.

“I started when I was like 5, which really for gymnastics isn’t that young,” April added. “I did soccer before.”

Like April, Cortni is a Level 10 gymnast.

THE BRODEURS

Did you know that Devils longtime goalie Martin Brodeur’s brother Claude Brodeur pitched in the Montreal Expos system?

Claude “spent five years as a pitcher in Montreal Expos organization before an arm injury derailed his career,” according to Martin’s NHL.com profile.

According to Baseball-Reference.com, Claude was born Jan. 15, 1960 in Charlotte, N.C. and was 6-3, 227 pounds during his playing days. Now 53 years old, Claude only advanced to Low-A ball.

He made 22 appearances, including one start, and posted an 0-2 record, 4.05 ERA and 1.45 WHIP.

Martin’s profile on NHL.com also states that his dad Denis “was the longtime photographer for both the Expos and Canadiens. His dad was also a Bronze Medal-winning goalie on the 1956 Canadian Olympic Team and was a minor league shortstop briefly in North Dakota.”

TWO-PLUS DAYS IN THE BOX

Tiger Williams is the all-time NHL leader with 3,966 penalty minutes. That is 2.775 days worth of sitting in a penalty box.

Williams played in the NHL from 1974-88. He was 5-11, 190-pound left winger.

Dave Schultz is the all-time leader for PIMs in one season. He had 472 during the 1974-75 season.