Saluting the overachievers, the quiet leaders and the often overlooked athletes in local high school sports.


Windham Soccer


Coach Matt Bryant said, “Cassie has played three different positions this year. Her versatility helped us get through a rough patch. She’s our go-to option if we need someone to fill in due to injury or illness.”

The 5-foot-8 junior also plays lacrosse. Her sister, Danielle, was a basketball-soccer captain and her brother, Billy, also was a Windham athlete. The Fischers moved from Tennessee to Windham when Cassie was in second grade.

Cassie, who works at Fody’s Tavern in Derry, is taking AP classes in physics and computers. She has a dog, a beagle named Bailey.

Her favorites include the TV show “One Tree Hill,” women’s soccer star Alex Morgan, her chemistry teacher (and coach) Matt Bryant, the “Star Wars” movies and rapper Juice Wrld.


Timberlane Football


Few kids have as much on their plate as Joseph, a three-sport athlete, who works at Walgreens, is pursuing Eagle-Scout honors and does a slew of extra-curricular activities.One is the band, which Friel does at halftime while playing for the football team!

Coach Kevin Fitzgerald said, “He is one of the most well-rounded student-athletes I have ever coached.”

The 6-1, 165-pound senior from Atkinson takes five AP courses and scored a 1,470 on his SATs.

His sister, Jordyn, is a multi-sport athlete at Timberlane Middle School. Their dog, a yellow Lab named Cleo, just had seven puppies.

Joseph’s favorites include chicken piccata, chemistry teacher Paul Vigeant and 1970s English band Electric Light Orchestra.


Central Catholic Soccer


Zubiel missed much of last season with an injury then broke her foot this summer. The 5-foot-8 senior from Haverhill, though, was determined and returned for the playoffs.

Coach Casey Grange said, “Zubs, as we call her, didn’t just show up to practice. She takes initiative, asking what she can set up for us, puts air in the balls, shags and serves in addition to riding a bike or jogging to stay in the best shape.”

Maddie’s older sister, Caitlin, also attended Central. Maddie works for her father, Ted Zubiel, the superintendent at Bradford Country Club. Maddie, who is a vegan, hopes to attend school in California.

Zubiel’s favorites include Drake, vegetable fajitas and Central chemistry teacher Shawn Chase.


North Andover Golf

Looked up To

Coach Nick Antonelli said, “He had our best individual record at 11-3 and the younger guys on the team looked up to him.”

The 5-foot-8 senior co-captain played at No. 4 for the Knights and one of his teammates was his brother, Tyler Fay, a freshman. Dad, Daniel Fay, golfed at Andover High. Mom, Valerie, played softball at Gloucester High.

Jack also runs winter and spring track. He volunteers at the North Andover Youth Center and his top college choice is UMass Amherst. The Fays are dog lovers with two lab mixes, one named Kobe and the other Tyson.

Fay’s favorites include steak, “The Office,” Julian Edelman, his math teacher Deb Callagy, the movie “Goodfellas” and rapper Kodak Black.


Haverhill Cross Country

The Best Attitude

Coach Mike Maguire said, “She has a great work ethic and always has the best attitude. A sure leader for us in the years to come.”

The 5-foot-2 sophomore placed 24th in the MVC Meet, a big jump from 60th in 2018. She’s a year-round runner who got her start with the Bradford Huskies in third grade.

Brynne (rhymes with win) has made the highest honors (distinction) every term in high school. She’s a proud grad of Hunking Middle School.

Her sister, Ariann, is a junior who runs for the Hillies, too. Mom and Dad (Kelly and Steven) are marathoners. The LeCours family has a Golden Retriever named Bodhi.

Her favorites include the TV show “Stranger Things,” AP history teacher Marc Harvey and “Forrest Gump.”


Coaches or ADs should send nominations to Unsung Heroes writer Michael Muldoon at

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