SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Sports

December 27, 2013

A YEAR TO CELEBRATE Titles came in bunches in 2013 across the North Shore sporting landscape

Team celebrations were a common trend across the North Shore over the past 12 months. Four of our local teams won state championships, while several others took home North sectional titles.

These headlines were splashed across our sports pages over the last year, from Danvers High boys basketball winning its second consecutive state title in March to, most recently, the unbeaten Bishop Fenwick football team hoisting the Division 5 state hardware on the turf at Gillette Stadium.

Perhaps the most talked about story in Massachusetts high school sports was the state’s new football playoff system, which had many more playoff teams than in years past, up to four rounds of playoffs and ultimately crowned six champions from across the Commonwealth. Eight teams in the Salem News readership area made it into the postseason under the new format, while Fenwick was the first team in our coverage area to win a Super Bowl with the new system.

Here’s a look back, in chronological order, at the Top 10 North Shore sports events from 2013:

Danvers boys basketball team wins second consecutive state title: From winning its first state title the previous season to becoming the first basketball team in The Salem News coverage area to win back-to-back championships, the Falcons were the team to beat in Division 3. They capped off their 2012-13 campaign with 66-50 victory over Smith Academy at the DCU Center in Worcester, once again hoisting the state championship trophy high about their heads.

Danvers (24-2) also set a new school record for most wins in a single tournament season with six, topping last year’s total of five. The Falcons got huge contributions from its four senior captains — Nick McKenna, Eric Martin, Nick Bates and Dan Connors — along with sophomore Vinny Clifford. Their tournament run was nothing short of perfection, made even sweeter after taking down Smith in the title clincher.

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