BUILT-IN ADVANTAGE

Florida State women’s soccer coach Mark Krikorian had a big advantage in recruiting Manchester Central (N.H.) High star Paige LaBerge. Her mother, Kristen, was an All-American at Franklin Pierce for Krikorian, a Pinkerton Academy graduate.

COACH HANSBURY

Annie Hansbury, a two-time second-team All-American at UMass Lowell, is the new head coach for Stonehill’s field hockey team. The ex-Timberlane star (TRHS ‘08) was an assistant at Bryant last year.

CLASSIC MISMATCH

UNH men’s basketball never fails to disappoint with a cringe-worthy home opener. This year it’s tiny Division 3 Maine Maritime, aka the Duke of Castine. Prediction: UNH 142, MMA 56

MASS. MADE

The 24-player USA Today preseason All-American girls soccer team includes sophomores Molly Martin of Acton/BB&N (Penn St.) and Ally Sentnor of Hanson (UNC); and seniors Kristi Vierra of Norwell (Wake Forest) and Cat Barry of Hingham/Tabor (South Carolina).

IF THEY STAY

I get a kick out of the local high school fans crowing, “Watch out for us, we had this terrific 8th grade travel team.”

A huge caveat is if the top kids don’t attend Catholic school, prep school or a tech school.

SOARING SMITH

Leilah Smith is an athletic 6-5 volleyball star from Dallas who’ll be attending Stanford in the fall of 2020. She can touch nearly 11 feet (10-10) off the ground.

St. CLARE

If you see former longtime Eagle-Tribune sports page designer Kevin Conway, tell him congrats on his daughter, Clare Conway of Billerica and Becker College. She was NECC rookie of the year in lacrosse and scored seven goals for the hockey team.

PROF. MICKY WARD

Clemson has a female professor named Micky Ward. No relation to the great Lowell boxer Micky Ward.

GRADE INFLATION

When colleges breathlessly report they have a player on a preseason watch list, realize those lists are like the Manhattan phone book. There are 60 Division 1-A tight ends, for example, on the John Mackey Award list.

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E-MAIL: mmuldoon@eagletribune.com

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