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Byline: Dave Nordman

COLUMN: EDITOR'S NOTE

As sports editor of the newspaper that produces this magazine, I'm often accused of writing just about the best players and teams. While that is often the case - after all, people like to follow winning teams - we've gone out of our way in these pages to focus on those who don't always get the ink.

OK, so Matt LaBove gets his share of headlines for being a stud basketball player at St. John's High. Ditto for Quaboag Regional field hockey and basketball standout Olivia Jankins. But I bet you didn't know both are straight-A students, who have Ivy League schools knocking down their doors.

Tyler Bennett, a three-sport star at Northbridge High, wants to work in advertising or marketing after college, but there's no better way to sell one's self than carrying a 4.58 grade point average.

Defensive players don't get headlines, either. In fact, their names often don't show up in a game story or even a box score. But there isn't a harder worker on the South High football team than Brandon Hampton, who piles up tackles if not accolades. He's proof that while offensive players get most of the attention, it's the guys on the other side of the ball who win games.

Who are the most improved cross country runners in Central Mass.? Westboro High's Andy Haskell is certainly among them. He has improved his 2.6-mile time by more than four minutes in two years. And what about Shepherd Hill's Leah Tully, who placed 103rd at the Central Mass. Championships as a freshman? These days, she's a key scorer for the Rams and a model of perseverance.

Most would agree, volleyball is the most overlooked and underappreciated fall sport. But Westboro High coach Roger Anderson definitely appreciates Mino Baban, arguably the best player at her setter position, which by the way, is often overlooked.

Then there's Maura Fox and Erin Kinback, a couple of talented juniors on a Shrewsbury High girls' soccer team full of talent. They are evidence that the Class of 2009 is indeed ready for prime time.

We hope you enjoy this second edition of Hometeam. We believe it's better than the first. And again, don't forget to check out our Web site, www.telegram.com/hometeam.

Enjoy!
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Publication:Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)
Date:Nov 1, 2007
Words:383
Previous Article:Junior high; No longer underclassmen, the Class of 2009 is ready for prime time.
Next Article:Class Acts; Top student-athletes have goals to achieve, work to do.


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