Sachem girls seek to repeat as Division III lacrosse champs

LACONIA — The defending Division III champion Laconia High School girls lacrosse team will play tonight against third-ranked Kearsarge for the division title in a 5 p.m. game at Bedford. The Sachems broke open a close game Saturday night in Bedford to post an 18-11 win over Derryfield to earn a shot at the title.
Helen Tautkus scored seven goals to lead the way for the Sachems, while Gabby Smith and Mackenzie Howe each scored four.
In Division III softball second-ranked Franklin will face sixth-ranked Berlin in a 5 p.m. semifinal game at Plymouth State University today. The Golden Tornadoes rallied to beat Conant 7-4 Monday afternoon in a game played at Odell Park in Franklin.
In a 7 p.m. game at PSU tonight, top-ranked White Mountains will face fourth-ranked Mascenic. White Mountains beat Belmont 4-1 Monday afternoon. Berlin beat third-ranked Prospect Mountain 5-1 Monday to advance to tonight's game against Franklin.

The Laconia boys lacrosse game was rained out last night and will be played tonight at 5 p.m.

– Roger Amsden

Small gas explosion burns Weirs man

LACONIA — A man was taken to Lakes Region General Hospital Tuesday after being burned when a small gas explosion happened at 7:58 a.m. while he was trying to ignite the pilot light at a 21 Weeks St. in the Weirs.

Fire officials said the man was treated by ambulance crews and taken to the hospital for evaluation.

Officials said the fire had been extinguished by the time they arrived but there was about $10,000 in damage to the building. The occupants were able to shut off the gas before fire crews arrived.

— Gail Ober

Parks & Rec asks to fund full-time maintance position


LACONIA — Explaining his request to add a full-time maintenance position, Kevin Dunleavy, director of recreation and facilities, told the City Council Monday that the expansion of municipal amenities has "tipped the scales for our department."

Dunleavy was referring to the Weirs Community Park, Winnipesaukee-Opechee-Winnisquam Trail, Downtown Riverwalk as well as the Gateway Plaza at the foot of Main Street and the pocket park at the junction of Pleasant Street and Main Street, all of which are tended by the department.

In addition, the department maintains 15 parks, school playing fields, nine cemeteries, five beaches, two libraries, City Hall, the police station and other public spaces around the city while offering some 100 recreational and instructional programs. Dunleavy said "We are seeing more interest in the use of our facilities and we're having difficulty keeping up with what we have to keep up."

City Manager Scott Myers included funding for the maintenance position in his recommended budget, along with $70,000 to replace the department's 1978 tractor and $35,000 to replace its 1998 dump truck.

However, Dunleavy pitched the councilors for $78,000 to reconstruct the tennis courts at Leavitt Park, $15,000 to replace the bleachers at the softball diamond at Memorial Park, $20,000 to construct a sewage disposal system at Bond Beach and and $15,000 for new elements at city playgrounds, all items Myers recommended not to fund.
Dunleavy suggested some or all of these projects could be funded from a non-capital reserve account accrued to repair, replace and reconstruct facilities, which has a current balance of $233,000, of which $60,000 has been designated for replacing windows at City Hall.