, Salem, MA

Sports Special

April 1, 2014

2014 Salem News Student Athlete Award profile: Jillian Witwicki, Pingree

Having two head coaches for one sport in a single season isn’t always easy. But having a captain like Jillian Witwicki to lead the Pingree girls hockey team was a dream come true for both Highlander coaches this winter.

Buddy Taft filled in for head coach Sarah Carpenter during her maternity leave, and the Highlanders thrived under each, despite losing one of their captains to torn knee cartilage. Both Carpenter and Taft gave the credit to their squad’s leader: the always positive and affable Witwicki.

“The most impressive thing about Jill is the way she leads. That’s not something you can learn by shooting pucks in the driveway,” said Taft. “She has high expectations, but she does it in such a positive way. She doesn’t say anything negative, and she has a way of making teammates feel great about themselves.”

Hockey is Witwicki’s favorite sport — and it’s easy to see why. She’s a four-year varsity force and graduated as the sixth member of Pingree’s 100-Point Club for girls hockey. She was Eastern Independent League MVP and received the program’s prestigious Wheeler Award. She was never picky about who shared the ice with her and relished the chance to give assists on teammates’ first career goals.

“Jill never let anything get her down, instead offering to play with beginners to help the team. She was outstanding, selfless and always wanted her teammates to find success first,” said Carpenter. “She’s the heart and soul of our program, and she loved helping them learn the game.”

Also a league all-star in field hockey and softball, Witwicki hails from Danvers. She’s received Pingree department honors in math, science and visual arts while tackling Advanced Placement courses in statistics and environmental science.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Student-Athlete 2014
Local News
  • Ipswich selectmen act to stop clam raiders IPSWICH -- The Southwest is not the only border under siege. Ipswich is taking emergency action to deal with clammers coming across the Essex and Gloucester border on Sundays to harvest on the richest clamming beach in Ipswich. It's not as serious, o

    July 22, 2014

  • fessendens Volunteers planning playroom makeover for Beverly's Riley Fessenden

    For Riley Fessenden, a fun day at home might include playing games, building with Legos and watching a movie with her family. This week, a whole lot of people are going make sure she has a great place to do all of those things. About 70 volunteers ar

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos 4 Stories

  • New Brimbal Avenue design to be presented Thursday

    BEVERLY -- Residents will get their first chance to weigh in on the new design proposal for the Brimbal Avenue/Route 128 interchange on Thursday. City and state officials, along with designer Jacobs Engineering, will host a community meeting Thursday

    July 22, 2014 6 Stories

  • Gettysburg Ipswich students honor Gettysburg Address's 150th anniversary

    IPSWICH -- A group of 30 kids gathered at the Ipswich Public Library Tuesday evening to recite the Gettysburg Address to their friends and family from the balcony. The students, who are in grades 3 through 8, have been studying the document as part

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Marblehead diver rescue 2 Body of diver recovered off Marblehead

    State Police divers found the body of a 59-year-old man in the waters off Marblehead at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to state police.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos 1 Story