SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

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December 27, 2013

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

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In the three-and-a-half games played, Thomas recorded 766 rushing yards and eight total touchdowns. The 2012 Salem News Player of the Year will graduate with 3,709 rushing yards and 42 total TDs in 2 1/2 seasons at. John’s.

Less than a month after his season-ending injury, Thomas — widely regarded as the state’s best player — decided against Maryland and told Penn State head coach Bill O’Brien, a former St. John’s Prep player (Class of ‘88), that he would accept the Nittany Lions’ scholarship offer instead, citing it was always where he wanted to go.

Masconomet boys soccer wins first Division 2 state title since 1996: After falling to Ludlow in the Division 1 state final two years ago, the then-sophomores for Masconomet felt they had something to prove. So this time around, Chieftain senior captains Adam Grammer and Jeff Panella made sure that their club would once again have a shot at a championship trophy — and this time, they’d win it.

Behind five Div. 2 state tournament wins, the Chieftains hoisted the hardware after trumping Walpole in the title game, 4-2. Masconomet was a clear front runner in the playoffs after a near-perfect regular season, sweeping their Cape Ann League slate and losing only to Division 1 powerhouse Somerville. They finished with 17 shutouts, including a 3-0 victory over Danvers in the Div. 2 North quarterfinals. Under head coach Dave Mitchell, Masconomet also earned its third consecutive CAL title.

Danvers’ Meghan Duggan chosen as captain for USA Women’s National hockey team: Gearing up for her second Olympic Games this coming February, Duggan was named captain of the United States Women’s National Team in preparation for the February Games in Sochi, Russia. The 26-year-old power forward will serve in the role for the duration of USA Hockey’s ‘Bring On The World Tour’ leading up to the Games.

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