Synchers adds to trophy case

As the largest synchronized swim team in the country, the Andover/North Andover YMCA's ANA Synchers says it is a team with a long list of accolades. That list just got longer as the Synchers out swam their competitors, taking first place in every senior event at January's NESSA Jr/Sr Championship and Age Group Invitational, the group reports. With nine gold medals and a stack of silver, ANA finished the day by receiving the NESSA High Point Trophy.

Andover/North Andover YMCA ANA Synchers 16-19 Jr/Sr Swimmers:

Senior Team Routine: First, Laina Gray, Caitlyn MacGregor and Alice Rodgers of North Andover, Gillian Brassil and Candace Ju, of Andover, Jennifer Flanagan of Boylston, Janine Kopeski of Sterling and Laura Schmidt of Hollis, N.H.

Senior Trio: First, Laina Gray, Laura Schmidt and Gillian Brassil; second, Caitlyn MacGregor, Alice Rodgers and Janine Kopeski

Senior Duet: First, Jennifer Flanagan and Candace Ju

Senior Solo: First, Gillian Brassil; second, Allison Ziel; third, Laina Gray; fourth, Jennifer Flanagan

Junior Trio: First, Laina Gray, Laura Schmidt and Gillian Brassil; second, Caitlyn MacGregor, Alice Rodgers, Janine Kopeski; third, Marian Crockett, Gloria McNamara both of Andover, and Anna Barnes of Ipswich

Junior Duet: 1st, Marian Crockett, Gloria McNamara, both of Andover

Junior Solo: First, Alison Ziel; second, Laina Gray both of North Andover

Senior Figures: First, Gillian Brassil; second, Candace Ju; third, Alison Ziel; fourth, Laura Schmidt

Junior Figures: First, Gillian Brassil; second, Alison Ziel; third, Laina Gray; fourth, Laura Schmidt .

For more information visit the Andover/North Andover YMCA's ANA Synchers at or to try a class contact head coach Svetlana Malinovskaya at 978-685-3541 Ext 147 or at

Arvidson named to AD's honor roll

Volleyball player Kirsten Arvidson of Andover, a freshman at Stonehill College, has been named to the school athletic director's honor roll for the fall 2010 semester.

A total of 216 Stonehill student-athletes were recognized for earning a grade point average of 3.2 or better during the semester.

Rowing club accepting new members

Essex Rowing Club Inc. is accepting registrations for its adult programs for the upcoming spring season. No experience is necessary, introductory programs are available for anyone interested in trying the sport. All fitness levels are welcome. For registration details or for more information about Essex Rowing Club youth programs, visit or call 978-208-4617.

Fencing sessions nearby

Penta Fencing Club is holding open fencing sessions for kids and adults Saturdays from 1 to 3 p.m. at its Wilmington facility located at 1 Jewel Drive. There is no charge to attend and watch. To participate, there is a $15 floor fee for the three-hour session.Those interested in attending can RSVP by email to or by phone at 978-203-0380.

Owned and managed by Vaho Iagorashvili, a three-time Olympic medalist, Penta Fencing Club offers beginning fencing lessons to boys, girls, men and women.

Swim Team leader at Austin Preparatory

Austin Preparatory School senior Nysa Casha of Andover has been leading the swim team to a successful season as captain this year. A three-time Catholic Central League All-Star, Casha competes in the 100 meter fly, breaststroke and freestyle as well as the 50 meter freestyle. Austin's co-ed team finished second in the Catholic Central League this season. Casha will be swimming for Connecticut College next year. She is the daughter of Larry and Mary Casha of Andover.

Senior Ian Dempsey, of Andover is on the Plymouth State University men's basketball team, has been one of the team's starting guards this year. As of Feb. 10, he was third on the team in scoring,averaging 10.5 points per game, and had also tallied 46 assists and 19 steals. He was ranked fifth in the conference in 3-point percentage at .363 percent.

The Panthers, 10-11 overall and 4-7 in the Little East Conference, were averaging 71.8 points per game, according to a release from the school's sports information office.

2011 Andover High School pitcher Colin Norris has accepted a scholarship to play baseball at Merrimack College next season and has signed his national letter of intent. Norris committed to first year head coach Jim Martin after a recruiting visit to campus in November, according to a release.

A right handed pitcher, Norris' junior campaign was cut short due to a shoulder injury that he suffered a quarter of the way into his varsity season. Before the injury, Colin was 4-2 as the No. 1 starter for the Golden Warrior pitching staff.

Now 100 percent healthy, Norris said in a release that he is excited to be a part of the new era at Merrimack.

"I really liked my conversations with Coach Martin on my visit," Norris said. "I think he is going to build something special and I can't wait to be a part of the process of building a Division II national championship contending program."

Merrimack College plays baseball in the NE-10 conference, the only NCAA league that uses wooden bats instead of aluminum. The fact that Colin will pitch to wood in college factored into his decision to pick the Warriors.

"I think that my pitching style, going to a school that plays in a wooden bat league is the best fit for me," Norris said. "I think it will allow me to develop skills the best."

Colin will join fellow Andover High School product outfielder P.J. Farnham on the Warrior roster.

"It feels greet to know where I'm going to play in college so I can focus on having a great senior year for Andover High School," Colin said.

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