hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

May 9, 2012

Baseball team picks up key wins

Hillie Huddle

By Tom O'Brien

The Hillie baseball team came out on top in a couple of important Merrimack Valley Conference games last week. Haverhill came back from a 4-1 deficit to defeat first-place Billerica 5-4 on Monday night. The Hillies have also picked up league wins over Dracut and Lawrence over the past week to improve to six wins and seven losses overall. Three of the team's last four games have been decided by one run.

The girls tennis team has reached the halfway point of the 2012 season, boasting an impressive record of six wins and two losses. Andover snapped a five-match winning streak by the Hillies with a 3-2 victory last week. The Hillies responded with a convincing 4-1 MVC win over Tewksbury. The boys team has also played well of late, winning three of its last four matches to even its record at 5-5.

The boys and girls track teams took part in the Weston Twilight at Weston High School on Saturday. Patrick Garvey placed second in the high jump and fourth in the 110-meter hurdles. Alex Mayhew took second in the 100-meter dash and Michael McNaughton took second in the 800-meter run (missing first place by a 10th of a second). On the girls side, Jackie Solimine (800 meter), Riley Gilmore (1 mile), Bridget Twomey (1 mile) and Samantha Kelleher (2 mile) each placed in the top 15 in their respective events.

The No. 1 ranked Hillie volleyball team continued its dominance, running its record to a perfect 12-0. The team will travel to Billerica on Thursday and to Methuen on Monday before returning home to host Dracut on Wednesday night. The Hillies have not lost a single game in any match since Lawrence took a game from them back on April 11.

The girls lacrosse team carries a 4-4 mark into the last two weeks of their season. The Hillies will have the benefit of playing seven of their last eight games at home. The boys lacrosse team has dropped three straight matches, including a 6-1 loss at Dracut on Monday. The Hillies are now 7-4 on the season. They will try to avenge the Dracut loss on Thursday when they host the Middies at 5 p.m.

The softball team has not played since last Wednesday, when it was edged 5-4 at Methuen. The Hillies, with a record of four wins and seven losses, have important games coming up against Lawrence, Lowell and Notre Dame this week.

Senior football players Connor Tufts and Taylor Sullivan have been selected to participate in the 2012 Agganis All-Star Classic. The game will be played on June 29 at the Manning Bowl in Lynn.

For all of the current spring schedules and information on Haverhill Athletics, please visit www.hillies.org and click on "Athletics.''

• • •

Tom O'Brien is the athletic director at Haverhill High School. He contributes this regular column.