On the Sports Beat
---- — It was a big week in Andover — at least it was for a couple Andover families and their sons, Michael Yastrzemski and John Farrell.
Both not only ended their careers among the best in their respective conferences, but Yastrzemski and Farrell were both selected on day three of the Major League Baseball draft on Saturday.
Yastrzemski was drafted in the 14th round by the Baltimore Orioles, 429th overall, while Farrell, his Andover Legion teammate, was selected in the 21st round by the Tampa Bay Rays, 683rd overall.
What a finish to their college careers these two had:
Yastrzemski, who graduated from Vanderbilt University (Nashville, Tenn.), was named First Team All-SEC and All-Defensive Team by the coaches, hitting .312 with 25 extra-base hits, 43 RBIs, 52 runs scored and a career-best 20 stolen bases. He ended his Vanderbilt career starting the final 203 consecutive games.
Farrell, who graduated from William & Mary University (Williamsburg, Va.), finished his senior season with a record of 11-3 and an ERA of 2.70. He became the first Tribe hurler to win 10 or more games in a season since Rosy Waugh accomplished the feat in 1938. Farrell also led the CAA in wins and innings pitched (116.2) and he earned first-team All-CAA accolades.
Tildsley: Perry right choice
Count former Andover High girls basketball coach Jim Tildsley among those in favor of his replacement, Andover’s own E.J. Perry III.
“It was great choice,” Tildsley said. “E.J. has won everywhere he has coached. I really believe the program will be in great hands.”
Tildsley said while it won’t be easy coaching three varsity sports — Perry will coach AHS football and boys volleyball, too — Perry has what it takes to get it done.
“E.J. has tons of energy and he’ll need it,” Tildsley said.
As for coaching girls after coaching boys his entire career, Tildsley knows about that experience. He coached boys football and basketball for nearly two decades before taking over the girls job in Andover.
“To tell you the truth, I coached the same way as when I coached the boys,” Tildsley said. “It’s all about players understanding their roles on the team and what they have to do to make their team successful. As long as he stresses team and not the individual, he will do a great job.”
Oppenheim breaks record
Andover native Robbie Oppenheim stopped by the area to visit his family and get in some work with Andover Country Club head pro Mike Menery a few weeks ago.
Oppenheim, who is a regular on the Web.com Tour, which is one step away from the PGA Tour, was working on his game with Menery.
Apparently, his sessions went pretty well. Oppenheim broke the course record with a 63, besting a 60-year-old mark by John Thoren in 1953.
In Oppenheim’s group to witness history was Evan Harmeling, Kenny Oppenheim and Menery.
“And it included a three-putt bogey on 15,” Menery said.
Andover tennis accolades rolling in
It was a big year for Andover High tennis. Isn’t that a redundant statement?
This year’s boys and girls honorees are numerous.
For the girls, junior Samantha Camilo was named Merrimack Valley Conference’s Div. 1 Player of the Year and her coach, Alan Hibino, was named Div. 1 Coach of the Year.
Senior Rachel Holzman claimed the second singles spot while senior Julia Alagero and sophomore Laurie-Maude Chenard copped first doubles honors.
For the boys, senior Austin Bendetson was named Div. 1 Player of the Year and Mike Wartman was named Div. 1 Coach of the Year.
Juniors Varun Penamatsa and Arun Padykula were All-Conference singles players while Andover stole the show in doubles with sophomore Sebastien Boulas, freshman Drew Rooks, senior Sameer Sangal and junior Aaron Edelman named to the team.
More kudos for Hunt
You have to hand it to recent St. John’s Prep grad Dustin Hunt, who saved his best for last on the mound for the Eagles in their stunning loss to Billerica, 4-3, in the Div. 1 North finals at LeLacheur Park in Lowell.
Hunt came on in relief in the seventh inning, in a no-out, bases-loaded jam, and got the next three Billerica batters out, thus keeping his team in it.
With his fastball measured at 90 mph, Hunt kept Billerica scoreless the rest of the game, but the Prep couldn’t get a run across the plate despite several chances the last three innings.
Hunt, who transferred from Andover High to the Prep after his junior season, was arguably among the top five pitchers in the state this season. He is bound for Northeastern University in the fall.
Bill Burt is executive sports editor of The Eagle-Tribune. If you have any sports tidbits you’d like to get in, you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.