Wednesday, May 24, 2017
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  • Two alarm blaze rips through Highland Ave. building

    Monday, May 15, 2017 00:00
  • RHS senior receives $5,000 Hood® Milk Sportsmanship Scholarship

    Monday, May 15, 2017 00:00
  • Mayor submits $227 million FY18 budget

    Monday, May 15, 2017 00:00
  • Playground Dangers

    Monday, May 15, 2017 00:00
  • Community ’N Unity Celebration

    Monday, May 15, 2017 00:00


Saugus native, former MC star Vecchione shoots for the moon


Mike Vecchione may be of college age, but he’s close to achieving celebrity status in both Saugus and Malden. That’s because the former Malden Catholic hockey star – and Saugus native – is doing incredible things with his hockey stick for Union College this season. Vecchione, a senior, has scored 18 goals and record 31 assists for the Dutchmen, who are currently 14-5-2 on the season. Those statistics place him second in the country for both goals and points and are serving as encouragement for the budding hockey star to consider the NHL as his next stop.

“My goal is after Union to become a professional hockey player,” Vecchione said in a phone interview. “That’s a dream of mine. I want to do that and have a long career.”

Few would bet against him at the moment. He is a very valued member of the number-11-ranked team in the country. He scored 34 points as a freshman and 50 as a sophomore and had nine goals as a junior. With more ice time, he’s getting better. Despite all that success, Vecchione is remaining humble.

“We work hard at Union, but I owe a lot to my teammates,” he said. “They put me in good positions, and I try my best to work hard on my line and help them, too. My parents are both very level-headed; they’re proud of me, but they help me keep things in perspective, too.”

Union College is situated in Schenectady, N.Y., just outside Albany. He returned home to Boston during holiday break and got to spend eight days with his family. He also returned for last Friday’s game against Boston University. Union lost 5-4 in overtime, but Vecchione contributed two assists.

Maybe another sign that Vecchione is on the path of greatness is his continuous training. Even during the break, he took time to skate and work on tactics with his former coach at Malden Catholic, John McLean.

“Coach McLean has always been great and I loved working with him a few weeks back,” Vecchione said. “He’s always here to help and he’s been a great mentor. We worked on a number of things … just to get better, whether it’s with technique or getting faster … That’s the type of place Malden Catholic is, though. It’s a big family. I got to catch up with him over the break and even spend time with some of my former teammates. We hung out together and even saw a game. I’m thankful for that place – it’s a great school.”


Saugus girls’ basketball team blows by Somerville


The Saugus girls’ basketball team improved to 7-2 on the season on Wednesday night after beating Somerville, 61-43. Saugus managed to come out on top in a tight contest and are looking to carry their momentum into Friday night’s game at home against Danvers.

“It was a good game, Somerville are always a pest for us – they don’t go away,” said Saugus coach Mark Schreunder. “They kept it even. Basketball is a game of runs. They’d go on a run of their own and then we’d pull it together.”

Saugus finished the first quarter up 17-5, though the Highlanders kept it even in the second. Somerville opened the third with a 7-0 run and trimmed their deficit to three points.

The Sachems were helped greatly by their well-rounded group of shooters. Alessia Salzillo led the way on Wednesday with a career-high 17 points, 10 of which came in the fourth quarter.

“It’s good for her that she was able to step up like that,” said Schreunder. “We needed someone as a team to step up.”

Olivia Valente added 13 points while Krissy Italiano had nine.

“Somerville are a scrappy group, but we’re happy to have come away with a win,” Schreunder added. “We have momentum going into our next game.”

Saugus will host Danvers, who are undefeated. The Falcons play a two-three zone and press. The Sachems have already begun preparing.

“That team has no weaknesses,” Schreunder said. “They have good shooters, good post play and a solid point guard. They’re well coached … It’s a challenge, but we’re taking things one at a time. We want to play clean and limit mistakes.”


Driver escapes serious injury after being pinned in overturned fuel oil truck; State responds to spill


Saugus firefighters freed a 46-year-old Lynnfield man from a fuel oil truck that rolled over on its driver’s side Tuesday afternoon on Sampson Street near the intersection of Dewey Street. Officials said that the slope combined with icy road conditions in the area could have contributed to the accident, which pinned the driver in the cab of the truck and resulted in more than 100 gallons of fuel oil spilling out over the ground.

“The cause of the crash remains under investigation,” Saugus Police Lt. Ronald Giorgetti said of the accident that occurred at about 1:32 p.m.

“He [the driver] was extricated by the Fire Department and was transported to an area hospital for evaluation and treatment. He suffered what we believe were minor injuries,” Lt. Giorgetti said.

The driver was able to walk on his own after firefighters used a hydraulic device to pry him loose from the truck. They removed the window during the rescue.

Police declined to identify the driver, citing the pending investigation. They listed him as an employee of August Brothers Oil, an East Boston fuel company. The truck was carrying 2,500 gallons of fuel oil, Lt. Giorgetti said.

Representatives of the state Department of Environmental Protection and a cleaning company responded to the oil spill. Crews from G & J Towing and Recovery of Revere spent about two hours at the scene. They used a HD 40-ton tow truck to right the truck, according to veteran Saugus Firefighter Damian Drella, who took photographs of the towing operation which are published in today’s edition of The Saugus Advocate.



“Process” proceeding spectacularly for Lady Sachems hoops

By Julian Cardillo

Saugus High School girls’ basketball coach Mark Schruender is in his fourth season at the helm and has maintained that he’s more about the process than he is about the results. But his undefeated Sachems team is taking care of business in terms of winning games and playing well and will enter 2017 at 4-0.

“I speak about the process over the results,” Schruender said. “We practice hard and play the right way. That’s more important than records. We’re competitive in practice and we work hard to do the right things.”

Saugus defeated Marblehead, 40-34, on Tuesday night and then bested Malden, 44-21, on Wednesday.

The Sachems are attacking and defending well as a unit, which is making it hard for teams to slow them down. There hasn’t been one particular person who’s been Schruender’s ace because each player – whether a starter or someone who comes in off the bench – is dangerous once they’re in a game.

“We’re balanced,” Schruender explained. “Our passers value that. We have a drill called ‘catch and sit’ where you get the ball but can’t dribble. You have to look for the best pass. Kids are unselfish and look to make the best pass so we can take the right shot.”

Saugus took an early 12-3 lead against Marblehead and never looked back. Krissy Italiano led scoring with 12 points and 11 rebounds for a double-double while Kiley Ronan had eight points off the bench. “Krissy is always moving,” Schruender said. “She’s nonstop and shows her endurance. She always works.”

Saugus took a 19-13 lead into halftime of Wednesday’s game against Malden and then pulled away rapidly in the third and fourth quarters. Olivia Valente had nine points while Rachel Nazzaro, Alessia Salzillo and Italiano each scored seven.

The Sachems play their rivals, Winthrop, at home on Tuesday. “They’ll be ready to play,” Schruender said. “Winthrop works hard and they have very good shooters.”

Sachem boys basketball surge
late in 74-58 loss to Marblehead

By Julian Cardillo


augus High School boys’ basketball coach Paul Moran believes his team can handle any opponent, even if his team’s record isn’t where he’d like it to be. That said, Moran believes the Sachems are better than their 1-4 record suggests. As evidence, he points to their performance in a 74-58 loss to Marblehead last Thursday night.

“We played very well,” Moran said. “Marblehead is one of the top teams in the Northeast Conference. I feel like we’re doing a good job and that the team is coming along … This is a good group that works hard. We need to focus – not turning the ball over and working hard over the entire 32 minutes of the game. Until we do those things we’ll struggle, but the season is only 25 percent done. When it all clicks, we’ll get some more wins.”

Saugus is winless in the conference despite keeping it a tight contest against Marblehead. They went into halftime down only 30-26. Matt Waggett led Saugus in scoring with 15 points, though the Sachems struggled on offense with turning the ball over.

“There were too many second-half turnovers,” Moran said. “We can’t have that – not against a team like Marblehead – we won’t get away with it.”

Saugus will now turn their attention to Bishop Fenwick, whom they host on Friday at 7 p.m. “They are a very well coached team,” Moran said. “We’ve seen them play four times this year, so we all know that we’ll have our hands full.”

Overtime loss provides first blemish
on Sachems hockey season

By Julian Cardillo


echnically, the Saugus hockey team is no longer undefeated. Then again, four-on-four overtime in a Christmas tournament is a bit of a crapshoot. Nevertheless, the Sachems will head into 2017 with a 4-0-1 record after falling to Medford, 4-3, in the Christmas tournament final.

Saugus jumped out to a two-goal lead thanks to strikes by Adam Rodriguez and Brendan Patterson, but the Mustangs retaliated in the second period off two power play goals. Nick Moore gave the Sachems the lead again near the end of the third period, but Medford equalized one minute later to force overtime.

“They won it on a weird bounce on a four-on-four,” said Saugus coach Jeff Natalucci. “I think we were the better team when it was five-on-five … The penalty trouble hurt us, and the OT was just to decide a winner. The MIAA doesn’t recognize OT, and this Christmas tournament needed a champion.”

Saugus beat Portland High School in Maine in the first round, 3-1. The Sachems’ 2017 slate opens with Gloucester next Wednesday.

“We’re happy about where we are, we have nine of a possible 10 points,” Natalucci said. “Gloucester is always a tough place to play. They’re coming off a strong season. But if we play like we did against Medford, we’ll give ourselves an opportunity to win every night.”


Sounds of Saugus

Here are a few tidbits that you might want to know about this week in Saugus.

Happy New Year, dear Advocate readers!

All the best to you and your family, for a happy and productive 2017.

With town elections set for next fall, this should be an interesting year for local politics. Selectmen, School Committee members, Town Meeting members and the candidates who aspire to run for any one of those offices will all have plenty to say at local meetings as they gear up for their campaigns.

May a field of good candidates with the best intentions help to make a good campaign with the focus on issues. Stay tuned. We look forward to interviewing a lot of these folks.

One-day delay for recycling

The Town of Saugus announced this week that trash and recycling are running on a one-day delay from now through next Saturday, January 7, 2017, due to the holiday season. Residents should leave trash and/or recycling out the morning after your regularly scheduled collection day.

The Town would like to thank everyone for their cooperation. Residents should contact Solid Waste/Recycling Coordinator Lorna Cerbone at 781-231-4036 with any questions.

Treat Jan. 2 like Jan. 1

Remember, even though most of the nation will be celebrating the dropping of the ball in Times Square to usher in the New Year early Sunday morning, federal and local government will be observing New Year’s Day again on Monday, Jan. 2. That includes Saugus Town Hall and other local government offices throughout town. So will the U.S. Post Office.

Wonder woman

Speaking of the Post Office, it has been giving a Saugus native a plug this year while promoting the 75th Anniversary Wonder Woman stamp. “New 75th Anniversary Wonder Woman Stamp has local roots. Original creator was born in Saugus Massachusetts,” according to the press release, which cited William Moulton Marston. “Marston was born in May of 1893 in the Cliftondale section of Saugus Massachusetts. A graduate of Harvard University, he went to work for DC Comics in 1940 and created Wonder Woman for her debut in December of 1941. Marston passed away in 1947 but was inducted into the Comic Book Hall of Fame in 2006.”

Flu shots still available for residents

The influenza vaccine is still available for town residents. A limited supply of the vaccine will be administered by appointment on a first-come, first-serve basis. It will only be available while supplies last.

Residents who wish to receive a flu shot should contact the Saugus Board of Health at 781-231-4115 to schedule an appointment.

From the Saugus Public Library

This just in from Brian Hodgdon, director at The Saugus Public Library:

· Borrow a Roku, 50+ movies in one! Saugus residents can now take home a Roku kit and choose from more than 50 feature films, TV shows and more to enjoy. You provide the internet connection and television with HDMI port. Stop by and pick one up, or reserve yours today at

· Check out your holiday favorites on Hoopla. Whether it’s the new holiday album from The Voice winner Jordan Smith, “The Polar Express” on audiobook, a cookbook for entertaining or your favorite holiday movie, Hoopla has what you need 24/7. Saugus residents can check out 10 items per month – get started at

· The library’s Annual Food for Fines program runs through the end of the year. Library staff encourages people who owe money for overdue books to bring in nonperishable food items to donate to local food pantries in time for the holidays. Every item donated will reduce your overdue fines by $1. This does not apply to lost items/replacement fees. Expired items will not be accepted.

The Advocate Asks

Got something interesting you would talk about? Or, perhaps you know somebody who might make a good interview. Feel free to send me an email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , telling me a little bit about yourself and sharing what you would like to talk about.



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