Lakers unified volleyball team falls to Pembroke in semifinal

The third seeded Inter-Lakes-Moultonboro unified coed volleyball team came up just short in a thrilling match on the road in Pembroke in the semifinals of the Division I tournament. The second seeded Spartans managed to eke out a 25-27 win in set one. Lydia Swedberg notched six points and two aces and Debbie Bickford had four points and several key passes. Set two was all Lakers, as IL-MA served for 100 percent and won 25-7. Jordan Donohue registered five passes, three points and three sets in the game. Sarah Dunlap added three service points. Anna Brown had a set-kill on game point. The Lakers held the momentum heading into the deciding set and raced out to a quick lead. Kaylee Converse served for three points and an ace to extend the lead. Tim Brown had a power kill to put the Lakers up 14-9, but the Spartans battled back to take the final six points and the match, 16-14. Pembroke Academy heads to the Division I Unified Volleyball State Finals for the second year in a row. IL-MA  finished its first season of competition in the division with a record of 4-2, with a loss to each of the two teams in the championship match.

NE Wolves will share ice at Laconia Ice Arena with AHI's Fighting Spirit

LACONIA — The American Hockey Institute's New England Wolves Junior Hockey team will be playing at the Laconia Ice Arena for the 2014-15 Metropolitan Junior Hockey League season.
After three independent seasons, the Wolves have decided to take advantage of new opportunities and will field two elite Junior level teams competing in the both the Eastern Hockey League and the Metropolitan Junior Hockey League.

The top team in the EHL, composed of all post- graduate players, will remain at the Wolves' Waterville Valley facility. The new MJHL team or "Met team", featuring players in birth years 1995-1998, will play out of Laconia Ice Arena, sharing the facility with the Lakes Region's other new Junior Hockey franchise, the American Hockey Institute's Fighting Spirit.
With a new year, new leagues and a new team, the American Hockey Institute will also be making some coaching changes. Andrew Trimble, Gilford resident and owner of hockey training business Scoring Concepts LLC, has been hired as the Assistant General Manager for the program and the Head Coach for the MJHL team.
''We look forward to growing the great relationships with sponsors, players, parents, press, and all of our local hockey fans—and giving back to the Lakes Region community,'' says Trimble.
He took this position after a successful two year run at Kingswood Regional High School in Wolfeboro, where in his first year with the program, his team's posted the first winning season in 9 years and followed that with the only back to back playoff appearances in over a decade. His success in the 2012-2013 season led to him being voted as the NHIAA DII Coach of the Year and Foster's Daily Democrat "Dream Team" Coach.
He comes from a three generation Hockey family: his grandfather, Dick Trimble, was employed by the NHL for over 25 years and won the 1990-91 John J. McMullen Award for service to New Jersey Ice Hockey and his father, Rick, has published 3 successful volumes of "The Ultimate Hockey Drill Book".

Coach Trimble grew up playing in the Brick Hockey Club and ended his career at Manasquan High School as the program's all-time leading scorer, MVP of his conference, an All-Shore selection, All-Tournament for the 97′ Garden State Games, Manasquan HS Hall of Fame Award, and a selection to the 98′ NJ State Senior All-Star Game.

Trimble went on to play and serve as Assistant Captain for the Laconia Leafs Junior Hockey Team in Laconia,  and NCAA Hockey for SUNY Buffalo State. Aside from his duties

with Scoring Concepts, Trimble is a Financial Advisor with Points North Financial, an independent Investment Consulting firm in Wolfeboro. He briefly played professionally for the NJ Spartans (CAHA).

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Belmont U-12 All-Stars win Gilford Invitational Tournament

The Belmont U-12 All Stars won the 2014 Gilford Invitational Cal Ripken tournament this past weekend. It was a 4 team tournament with teams from Belmont, Gilford, Lakes Region and Mt. Washington Valley. On Friday night Belmont won the most exciting game of the tourney, trailing a very strong Gilford team 5-0 in the 5th inning, Belmont scored 6 runs in the 5th and held Gilford off in the 6th for the comeback victory. Belmont lost to Mt Washington Valley 8-4 on Saturday and beat Lakes Region 9-4 Sunday at noon. The 2-1 record put Belmont in the finals to play MVW for a second time, this time they won 10-7 to capture the championship.

Belmont won this tournament with a team effort. Three different pitchers picked up wins in the tourney and two pitchers recorded saves. In all, Belmont used 8 pitchers and 4 catchers throughout the tournament. Belmont used 13 players over the 3 days with very different lineups all 4 games. All the kids on the team hit very well and played great defense.

Coach Brett Sottak would like to thank Jamie Boucher and the entire Gilford Cal Ripken program for putting on a great tournament. This is Belmont's 3rd year in Cal Ripken, they have done inter-league play with Gilford all 3 years and played in this tourney all 3 years, it has been a great experience for the Belmont teams with fun, healthy competition with the host team. Coach Sottak would also like to thank his players' parents for their great support and very positive, classy cheering throughout the 3 day tournament. He needs to thank the assistant coaches, Dave Garrett, Dave Gilbert and Al Gilbert, three good guys who are great with the kids and really know their baseball. Lastly, and most importantly, he'd like to congratulate the 13 players for their very impressive play. Two more weeks until Districts, this was a great way to start the All Star season for Belmont.

Offense slow to start for Muskrats

The Laconia Muskrats (1-4) opened the season last weekend on the wrong side of the win-loss column. The slow start began on opening day when the Muskrats hosted the Vermont Mountaineers losing 5-0. Jordan Sheffield (Vanderbilt) started for the Muskrats, lasting six innings, striking out five and giving up two walks. Vermont scored a pair off of Sheffield on a wild pitch and an error. The Muskrats tallied five hits on the evening.

Saturday night ended in similar fashion, losing 5-0 to the Keene Swamp Bats. Jack English got the nod in Keene going four innings, punching out five, and walking three. The Swamp Bats did the most damage in the fourth inning scoring four runs. The Muskrats were held to 2 hits in the shutout.

Laconia continued the scoring drought in the third game of the season, hosting Sanford Maine. The highlight of the evening was the pitching performance from Marino Rivera, Jr. (Iona). Rivera gave up his only run in the top of the first then settled down to throw five scoreless innings after. Rivera had seven K's and three walks while giving up only four hits over the six frames. Sanford tacked on an insurance run in the ninth and prevailed 2-0. The Muskrats were again held to two hits, totaling nine in the first three games.

The scoreless streak ended in the fourth inning of Tuesday night's road game in Holyoke. Christopher Beall (Arizona State University) drove in the first run of the season for the Muskrats. The Valley Blue Sox evened the score in the sixth, but the tie was short lived in the Muskrats' first victory of the season. Laconia scored two in the seventh to seal the win 3-1.

Wednesday night Laconia had a two run lead heading into the ninth until the Waves rallied for three runs to walk off with a victory 5-4. The Muskrats had 11 hits on the evening.

Laconia's schedule game against Mystic last night was postponed due to weather. Tonight they will travel to Sanford, Maine to play the Mainers for the second time in a week. The Muskrats will host a pair of weekend games against North Adams and Plymouth (Mass.). After a day off on Monday the Muskrats will visit North Adams on Tuesday, host Vermont on Wednesday, and head to Plymouth on Thursday.