Sports

Amherst College women’s basketball coach Gromacki fastest in NCAA history to reach 600 wins

02-08-2024 8:33 PM

By GARRETT COTE

Dynasty isn’t a term that gets thrown around loosely – that word holds a ton of weight in the sports world. It takes a lot of success over an extended period of time to call something a dynasty.But that’s exactly what South Deerfield native G.P....


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Amherst girls capture runner-up finish at MIAA Nordic Ski Championships (PHOTOS)

02-23-2024 9:42 PM

By GARRETT COTE

WOODFORD, Vt. — The Amherst girls Nordic ski team didn’t just feel like underdogs all season long — they were underdogs.Often overlooked given the geographical location, the Hurricanes were ready to display their talents on the biggest stage, at the...


“Nice call, ref”: High school referee ranks shrink amid abuse by fans, low pay

02-03-2024 11:00 AM

By GARRETT COTE

A couple weeks ago, I sat inside Smith Academy’s Sherry Webb Gymnasium in Hatfield to cover a girls basketball game between the Falcons and Duggan Academy of Springfield. As the game progressed, the displeasure from supporters only grew louder — and...


UMass basketball: Matt Cross leads balanced Minutemen past Saint Louis for first A-10 road wi

01-30-2024 10:15 AM

Matt Cross led four players in double figures, scoring 19 points to propel the UMass men’s basketball team to an 84-73 Atlantic 10 Conference victory over Saint Louis on Saturday night at Chaifetz Arena in St. Louis, Mo.The Minutemen won on the road...


H.S. Football Preview: Offensive firepower has Amherst optimistic about 2023 season

09-14-2023 10:46 AM

By GARRETT COTE

During the second-to-last regular season football game a year ago, Amherst matched up with Holyoke on a Friday night in Amherst. Both teams lit up the scoreboard. The Hurricanes had no answer for Purple Knights quarterback Gavier “NeNe” Fernandez, as...


UMass legend Julius Erving makes Western Mass. appearance at Basketball Hall of Fame

08-31-2023 5:20 PM

By GARRETT COTE

SPRINGFIELD — The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame hadn’t been as packed all summer. Hundreds of basketball aficionados across several generations poured onto center court and filled the bleachers to listen intently to a legend of the...


New Frontier AD Dave Sanschagrin looking to keep winning ways going 

08-25-2023 7:18 PM

By THOMAS JOHNSTON

SOUTH DEERFIELD — The Frontier Regional athletic department will have a new leader this fall. Dave Sanschagrin — who previously served as the athletic director at Southwick High School — was hired to replace Carl Cyr as the Redhawks’ athletic...


Longtime Amherst College basketball coach Dave Hixon belonged in every room at Basketball Hall of Fame induction

08-16-2023 8:06 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

SPRINGFIELD — John Calipari wrapped an arm around Dave Hixon as he introduced the longtime Amherst College men’s basketball coach to Michigan State coach Tom Izzo.Their time in Amherst overlapped when Calipari was at UMass. Hixon coached at Amherst...


‘More than I could have imagined’: Longtime Amherst College basketball coach Dave Hixon inducted into Basketball Hall of Fame

08-16-2023 7:57 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

SPRINGFIELD — Basketball gave Dave Hixon everything he could ask for. When the longtime Amherst College men’s coach retired in 2020, his former players and friends made him an hour and a half long video thanking him for his impact on their lives.“I...


Top on-court moments from David Hixon’s Hall of Fame career coaching Amherst basketball

08-14-2023 7:33 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

Dave Hixon always wore a suit to Amherst College’s men’s basketball games but never coached in it. He walked out of the locker room to cheers in LeFrak Gymnasium and banter on the road, shook his counterpart’s hand and chatted during shootaround. Once...


Amherst’s Davis Smith signs pro soccer deal with German squad Chemnitzer FC

08-02-2023 6:58 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

Davis Smith considered the paradox of a water bottle. The same brand costs 50 cents in bulk at a grocery store, a little over a dollar at a gas station, a few dollars on a plane and even more inside a stadium or concert venue. It’s the same bottle but...


Boys Volleyball Player of the Year Jesse Kurkulonis built Frontier program

08-02-2023 6:15 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

The Frontier Regional boys volleyball program wouldn’t exist without Jesse Kurkulonis.Inspired by the success of his friends on the Redhawks girls team, which has won 11 state championships including last fall, he began inquiring with newly minted...


2023 Gazette Girls Lacrosse Player of the Year: Ella Laliberte, Granby

07-27-2023 7:53 PM

By HANNAH BEVIS

With just seconds left in her final high school lacrosse game, Granby’s Ella Laliberte was one tally away from hitting 300 career goals. Everyone on her team knew, including Laliberte, and they quickly came up with a simple but effective plan of...


2023 Gazette Baseball Player of the Year: Patrick Fitzgibbons, Hopkins Academy

07-27-2023 7:35 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

Greg Vreeland called his older brother, Hopkins Academy baseball coach Dan Vreeland, over to the hitting tunnel set up near the field. The mesh cage allowed the Golden Hawks’ junior varsity call ups and bench players to take batting practice swings...


2023 Gazette Boys Track and Field Athlete of the Year: Logan Alfandari, Amherst

07-19-2023 1:48 PM

By HANNAH BEVIS

In the summer of 2022, after his freshman season, Amherst’s Logan Alfandari carefully poured a throwing circle in his backyard with his dad’s help. He decided that he wanted to have a place to get some extra practice after making a splash in throws...


2023 Gazette Girls Tennis Player of the Year: Ava Shea, Belchertown

07-19-2023 1:48 PM

By HANNAH BEVIS

Belchertown junior Ava Shea came into this tennis season with clear goals and a laser focus. Athletically, Shea was already a formidable opponent, with a serve that makes her opponents quake in their sneakers and the experience of playing No. 2...


Amherst’s Ryan Leonard goes to Washington Capitals at No. 8 in NHL Draft

07-06-2023 12:29 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

Stars and stripes suit Ryan Leonard, apparently.The Washington Capitals, with their red white and blue color scheme, selected the Amherst native with the eighth overall pick in Wednesday’s NHL Draft at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. Leonard...


Call him ‘goal-oriented’: Amherst hockey prodigy Ryan Leonard likely a top 10 NHL Draft pick

06-27-2023 4:59 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

AMHERST — John Leonard calls his youngest son Ryan “goal-oriented.”As much as Amherst’s Ryan Leonard excels at putting the hockey puck in the net, his father is referring to aspirations and desired achievements.“He keeps a lot of the goals to himself,...


Golden Hawks baseball run ends at Div. 5 state final

06-21-2023 7:45 PM

By KYLE GRABOWSKI

WORCESTER — Bourne’s bats built a bridge too far for Hopkins Academy.The No. 9 seed Golden Hawks rallied in nearly every game of the state tournament but couldn’t make it all the way back against the No. 2 Canalmen in the MIAA Division 5 championship...


Turners softball holds off Hopkins comeback to reach Div. 5 state final (PHOTOS)

06-15-2023 10:57 AM

By THOMAS JOHNSTON

WESTFIELD — The Turners Falls softball team is back in a familiar position. The Thunder entered Tuesday’s MIAA Div. 5 semifinal against Hopkins looking to keep their season alive as they seek an 11th state championship in program history, but the No....



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