EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

December 20, 2012

Haverhill's David is Mr. Soccer

Michael Muldoon
The Eagle-Tribune

---- — Mr. Soccer

Few people can match James David of Haverhill’s love of soccer. The sophomore was a part-time starter as a midfielder at Fitchburg State and also was an assistant at Fitchburg High and coached a youth team in Fitchburg, too.

Still dunking

Marques Johnson, the 6-7 former UCLA and Milwaukee Bucks star, has a tradition of throwing down a dunk on his birthday. He’s 56 now, but managed to throw one down. It was mighty close, though. Like Joe DiMaggio, the streak may end at 56.

80-foot game-winner

Check out bostonherald.com for the amazing video of Pat Santos’ 80-foot heave to give East Boston a 43-42 win over Madison Park. It came off a missed free throw with one second left so MP coach Dennis Wilson wondered how in the world it could have counted.

No final exam

Sports information directors tend to be overworked and underpaid, so we’ll forgive Brandeis for writing that Colby Smith and North Andover boys basketball reached the state finals last winter. It is accurate to say the slender freshman has been a major factor for the Judges, averaging 16.6 minutes a game.

Teddy bears for newtown

The Windham-Pelham High hockey team is participating in “Operation Fuzzy Wuzzy II” on Saturday at 5:20 p.m. at the Salem Icenter lobby. The team is asking for fans to donate Teddy Bears to give to the children of Newtown, Conn.

Thomas’ promise

St. John’s Prep junior Johnathan Thomas, who was brilliant in the playoff win over Andover with 209 rushing yards and three TDs, already has an offer from UMass and BC reportedly is close to offering.

Russell vs. rondo

Never would have guessed that Bill Russell (4,100) had more assists with the Celtics than Paul Pierce (4,013), Rajon Rondo (3,775), JoJo White (3,686) and Dennis Johnson (3,486).

‘Dream recruit’ Vonleh

Here is what Indiana coach Tom Crean said about top recruit Noah Vonleh of Haverhill to the Indiana media last week:

“Noah is a dream recruit in this sense: to have somebody who is that humble, that grounded and that talented at that young of an age and have the opportunity to not only recruit him but to also sign him, you can’t expect that. He’s exactly the kind of player you want to have in the program, because the upside is just enormous.”

Maine hazing

Twelve players from the Dexter (Maine) High football team were suspended from school and are facing criminal charges for an alleged hazing incident during a November sleepover at the school. According to the Bangor Daily News, one mother said, “(My) son had his pants pulled down while three players took turns hitting his backside with a polycarbonate bat.”

With all the hazing horror stories we’ve had locally and nationwide, schools continue to send athletes away to summer camps. That just tells me the coach, AD, principal, superintendent and school committee are hopelessly naive or hopelessly incompetent.

The next crosby

Connor McDavid, a 15-year-old phenom with the Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League, is frequently called the next Sidney Crosby including by Crosby himself, wrote Yahoo.com. McDavid signed a contract with Reebok, which could be worth a couple of million dollars.

Follow Michael Muldoon on Twitter under the screen name @MullyET.