Thursday, March 30, 2017
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  • Malden Democratic City Committee hosts 16th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Breakfast

    Friday, March 17, 2017 00:00
  • Councillor hosts Ward 4 Community Meeting

    Friday, March 17, 2017 00:00
  • Greatest of All Time

    Friday, February 10, 2017 00:00
  • “We are lucky because …”

    Friday, March 17, 2017 00:00
  • Mystic Valley History students advance to State Finals

    Friday, March 17, 2017 00:00


Tanners boys’ basketball team finishes 2016-17 season strong


Despite a tough defeat in the opening round of the Div. I North playoffs last week, the Peabody boys’ basketball team appears headed in the right direction. The Tanners finished 2016-17 with their most wins in 14 years and made the post-season tourney for the third season in a row.

“We were certainly disappointed losing to Lawrence [77-50] in the state tournament, but it doesn’t take away from the type of season our players had,” said Tanners head coach Thad Broughton, whose team ended with a 13-8 overall record (9-7 in the Northeastern Conference) that included an eight-game winning streak at one stage.

He added, “I can’t be any prouder of the way they competed and conducted themselves. We’ll certainly miss the seniors, and I look forward to the returning players continuing to build this program.”

Peabody will lose four-year varsity starters Matt D’Amato, who drained 48 three-pointers this winter and was named Moynihan Student Athlete of the Month in February, and Moisse Irizarry, who led the team with 43 blocks and had a big 25-point, seven-rebound effort against Saugus.

Broughton cited D’Amato’s 27-point performance against Gloucester, calling it “immense,” and he recalled D’Amato’s huge basket that helped lead to an overtime win over Winthrop. He said the team’s success would not have been possible without Irizarry’s contributions either. “Matt has developed into a complete player and he has a wonderful basketball future ahead of him. Moisse was a defensive force, and he’s worked hard to become a really good midrange shooter,” said Broughton.

Senior Junior Estrella, who averaged 16 points per game, had some monster outings this season, including a 34-point, 20-rebound gem in a win at Salem. “That was one of the best [individual] performances I’ve seen in a while. He absolutely carried us in crucial stretches of that game,” recalled Broughton.

Other departing players include “emotional leader” and starter Jake Doherty, who Broughton praised for taking key charges, making some huge three-pointers and playing intense defense. “Jake was always in the middle of everything we did,” the coach pointed out. Will Diezemann and Josh Callahan also contributed major minutes and needed spark off the bench, according to Broughton.

Looking ahead to next season, Broughton said there are some large holes to fill, but he is confident the team will continue to make progress. “It’s both a challenge and an opportunity for our underclassmen,” he said. “There are a few younger players who have already made major contributions.”

Sophomore guard Chris Canela averaged 10 points a game as the only underclassman in this year’s starting lineup, and fellow sophomore Chibuikem Onwuogo played outstanding defense and is a “natural leader.” Broughton said he is expecting big things from Canela, Onwuogo and junior Jake Irvine, who scored in multiple figures several times and “played some incredible basketball,” according to Broughton.

The junior varsity squad finished with double-digits in victories this winter, and freshman guard Sammy Batista, who received playing time at the varsity level, is “a great ball handler who can drive to the hoop” and shoot from the perimeter. Broughton added that juniors Jonell Espinal, Adrian Medrano (hurt most of the season), and Marcus Barker (out the entire season due to injury) will be counted on to bolster next year’s team.

Looking back on this season’s biggest turning points, Broughton said NEC road wins at Salem and Beverly stand out for him. “Those programs have always been at the top of the conference, so they were signature victories for our program,” he said. Against Salem, Peabody battled back from a 16-point first-half deficit, and the Beverly win came after the Tanners had lost to the Panthers at home earlier in the season.

“[The Salem] victory gave our team the confidence that we could compete with anyone in the conference,” said Broughton, who added that it was interesting to see how his team would perform the second time around against Beverly. “We were able to make some adjustments from the first game and the players executed them perfectly. That’s a sign of a team that improved and matured as the season went along.”

By Greg Phipps


Lady Tanners hockey team falls short of tourney goal

The Peabody girls’ hockey team was looking to add a third first-time accomplishment to its 2016-17 list last Wednesday, March 1, at 14th-seeded Arlington. But a first-ever Div. I playoff win was not in the cards as the 19th-seeded Tanners dropped a 5-1 preliminary-round decision to the host Spy Ponders.

Peabody had notched its first regular-season winning record and earned its first playoff appearance by shutting out Melrose in its final regular season contest. Last week’s playoff defeat left the Tanners at 9-9-3 for the entire season.

In the playoff loss, Peabody goalie Abigail Buckley was stellar once again by stopping 38 of 43 shots and keeping her team within shouting distance. Offensively, the Tanners managed just 11 shots on goal but did have a couple of quality scoring bids go wide of the net.

Peabody head coach Michelle Roach praised Buckley’s play. “There’s not enough good things I can say about her,” Roach told the press after the game. “Two of the goals she didn’t see. She got beat up a little at times, but she still found a way to keep us in it.”

Sammy Mirasolo, Carolyn Garofoli and Elise Murphy each came close to tallying for the Tanners, whose only score came on a Jess Robert power-play goal off assists from Garofoli and Murphy six minutes into the third period. That score made it 2-1 briefly before Arlington scored the final three times, including two empty netters in the final minute, to account for the final result. Roach also credited Caroline Buckley, Hanni Aylward, Kaydee Purcell and Mae Norton with strong games.

The Tanners are losing seniors Caroline Buckley, Murphy, Aylward, Erin Hunter and Jillian McCormick. “It’s a little bittersweet. We did some big things this year, but we’re losing five great kids,” Roach said of the senior players. “They helped us set a great foundation and they’ve been tremendous leaders. They’ve been so reliable on and off the ice.”

By Greg Phipps


Two corrections officers sentenced for smuggling drugs into Middleton Jail

Two former corrections officers at the Essex County Correctional Facility were sentenced in U.S. District Court in Boston for their involvement with smuggling Suboxone into the Essex County House of Corrections–Middleton for inmates. Katherine Sullivan, 32, of Londonderry, N.H., was sentenced on March 2 by U.S. District Court Judge Allison D. Burroughs to 36 months of probation and 120 hours of community service, and ordered to pay a fine of $5,000. In November 2016, Sullivan pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring with inmates to distribute Suboxone, a drug used to treat opioid addiction, between October and December 2015.

In January 2017, U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns sentenced John S. Weir, 34, of Danvers, Mass., to the same sentence after Weir pleaded guilty to conspiring with inmates to distribute Suboxone between September and November 2014. Both Sullivan and Weir have resigned from their positions as corrections officers.

Investigations revealed that Weir and Sullivan obtained Suboxone strips from sources outside the jail and smuggled the contraband into the facility when reporting for their shifts. Inmates receiving the Suboxone from Weir and Sullivan then sold the drug to other prisoners inside the jail.

Essex County Sheriff Kevin F. Coppinger said, “We have a zero-tolerance policy for this type of behavior and we will take swift and decisive action in all cases.”

Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb; Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division; and Essex County Sheriff Kevin Coppinger made the announcement. Assistant U.S. Attorney William F. Bloomer of Weinreb’s Public Corruption and Special Prosecutions Unit prosecuted the cases.


The Advocate HOROSCOPE

Aries (March 21st-April 20th): The planets are encouraging you to analyze your daily routine and nix anything that no longer serves you- including people! Find where the negativity in your life is coming from, and shut it down now.

Taurus (April 21st-May 20th): Midweek Mars entered your sign- which is good for moving forward! Passion will be high and your energy seeming to finally return. Utilize this energy for all the things you’ve ALREADY been saying you’d do, not the new ideas!

Gemini (May 21st-June20th): After a very lively couple of weeks, this one and next your energy levels may finally catch up to you. Give yourself as much time to rest, recoup and hide away as needed. Next week be wary of hurting a close friends feelings…

Cancer  (June 21st-July 22nd): Your social life should be very active at the beinging of the month. However, there is a good chance someone might really start to rub you the wrong way. There is probably no need for you to keep giving them the benefit of the doubt- walk away !

Leo (July 23rd-August 22nd): March brings great change for you Leo, in multiple aspects of your life. As long as you are open to the flow and cycle of it all, everything should run smooth. Let your heart, not your head, be your guide right now.

Virgo (August 23rd-September 22rd): A full moon in your sign on the 12th should bring in quite a few new ideas and motivations. This is an ideal time to start a new journal, diary or long term to do list. Putting a pen to paper will make all of your new goals more real.

Libra (September 23th-October 22rd): With Mars in Taurus now over the next couple of weeks your main focus should be your health- specifically your diet, and also your romantic life. Enjoy the company of those you love and seek out time with them. As far as your eating goes, it may be time to cut out some junk.

Scorpio (October 23rd-November 22nd): After getting paid this week the money may start to burn a hole in your pocket faster than usual. Be easy dear Scorpio, you are going to need these finances at the end of the month! Get a second opinion when it comes to getting advice this weekend.

Sagittarius (November 23rd-December 21st): It’s not like you to take a back seat on family drama but next week- that is your best bet! Stay neutral when everything hits the fan, and act as a peacekeeper. Getting involved will bring up issues that have already been dealt with.

Capricorn (December22nd- January 19th): Watch yourself when you’re feeling sassy this weekend and in public. Making bold statements will end up biting you in the butt- everyone is listening right now even those you forgot where there!

Aquarius (January 20th- February 19th): Yoga yoga yoga- can’t suggest it enough Aquarius! You have some built up emotions in your body, and stretching is one of the best ways to release these toxic feelings. Breathe in, breathe out! You’ll feel 100% after.

Pisces (February 20th- March 20th): Happy birthday Pisces, don’t think I officially said it last week! You are the rarest sign in the zodiac- but in my opinion one of the most critical! Don’t let emotions bog you down next week when everyone around you seems miserable.

Francesca Piazza is a Lynnfield native available for astrology consultations, tarot readings/parties, crystal healing, custom jewelry, and reiki. Please like Sister Fran Designs and Readings on Facebook for more info, or contact her at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .



Jeffrey and Susan Brudnick Center to host free screening of acclaimed “Being Mortal” documentary

Panel discussion exploring end-of-life care, homemade refreshments to follow film

The Jeffrey and Susan Brudnick Center for Living is holding a free community screening of the highly acclaimed documentary “Being Mortal” on Thursday, March 23 at 240 Lynnfield St. in Peabody from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Immediately following the screening, there will be a panel discussion and Q&A which will address concrete steps to identify and communicate wishes about end-of-life goals and preferences. The discussion will be led by industry experts, including a physician, social worker, nurse and spiritual counselor. Refreshments will be served and attendees will have the opportunity to speak with the panelists on a one-to-one basis.

“Being Mortal” delves into the hopes of patients and families facing terminal illness. The film investigates the practice of caring for the dying and explores the relationships between patients and their doctors. It follows a surgeon, Dr. Atul Gawande, as he shares stories from the people and families he encounters. When Dr. Gawande’s own father gets cancer, his search for answers about how best to care for the dying becomes a personal quest. The film sheds light on how a medical system focused on a cure often leaves out the sensitive conversations that need to happen so a patient’s true wishes can be known and honored at the end.

“Being Mortal” underscores the importance of people planning ahead and talking with family members about end-of-life decisions. Seventy percent of Americans say they would prefer to die at home, but nearly 70 percent die in hospitals and institutions. Ninety percent of Americans know they should have conversations about end-of-life care, yet only 30 percent have done so.

In February 2015, “Being Mortal” aired nationally on the PBS program “Frontline.” For more information about the film, visit The film is adapted from Dr. Gawande’s 2014 nationally best-selling book of the same name.

The free screening is made possible by a grant from The John and Wauna Harman Foundation in partnership with the Hospice Foundation of America. For more information about the event or to make a reservation, contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or ­­Jill Hurley at 617-889-0779.


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