Spring MVP: Harry Painter, Manchester Essex baseball
The Manchester Essex baseball team won its first ever state championship this spring, and Painter was the team's best hitter and best pitcher. The senior captain put up staggering numbers on the mound and in the field this season. He had five wins on the year, two in the state tournament, with a 1.87 ERA in the regular season to go along with 66 strikeouts in 42 innings. At the plate, the Cape Ann League Baker Division Player of the Year hit .544 with seven home runs. He had three hits in the Hornet's 5-2 win over Tahanto in the state championship game. Painter is committed to playing college baseball at UMass Lowell next spring.
Zach Abbott, Gloucester baseball
Only a sophomore, Abbott had a breakout season stepping in as Gloucester's staff ace and one of the most dominant arms in the Northeastern Conference. Abbott, a first team All NEC selection, tied a program record with nine wins on the season, he also eclipsed 100 strikeouts and was one of Gloucester's most reliable run producers at the plate.
Jake Athanas, Manchester Essex lacrosse
The senior captain was a strong veteran presence on a young Hornets squad. The St. Anselm bound Athanas led the Hornets in scoring and was one of the team's most reliable player's on the other end of the field as well. Athanas was named to the Cape Ann League All-Star team for the second year in a row this spring.
Rhodes Cole, Rockport tennis
The Vikings made big strides in their second varsity season and having a player like Cole at No. 1 singles helped solidify the entire lineup. The sophomore was one of the CAL's most consistent players with a well rounded skill set, taking on the opponent's best player and he was still among the team lead in individual wins.
Kyle Beal, Rockport baseball
The sophomore emerged as one of Rockport's most consistent performers in every facet of the game. A strike throwing machine, Beal established himself as the Viking's ace and earned a spot on the Cape Ann League All-Star team for his efforts. He was also one of Rockport's best hitters at the plate and a key run producer in the middle of the lineup.
Kellen Furse, Manchester Essex tennis
The junior played a combination of No. 3 singles and doubles and his athleticism helped him score many big points for the Hornets this spring. Furse was particularly strong in Manchester Essex wins, sporting a 5-0 record individually in matches his team won.
Jaden Kamm, Rockport tennis
Rockport had a very dangerous one-two punch at the top of the lineup this season with Kamm establishing himself as one of the CAL's best No. 2 singles players. Kamm's quickness and athleticism helped him rack up individual wins for the Vikings this spring and he even saw a few matches at the No. 1 spot.
Will Kenney, Gloucester track and field
Kenney was the lone Gloucester athlete to make the All-State Meet this spring. The Manchester Essex sophomore and three season Gloucester Daily Times All-Star won the Northeastern Conference mile championship and the first team All Conference status that comes with it. He turned in a top five finish in the event at the Eastern Mass. Division 2 Meet and a top 10 finish at the All-State.
Bennett O'Leary, Manchester Essex baseball
O'Leary was one of the CAL's best two-way players and one of the most consistent on the state champion Hornets. The senior captain and first team All CAL selection was a dangerous left-handed bat in the middle of the lineup and was second on Manchester Essex in RBIs. In the field, O'Leary was a standout at shortstop.
James Nelson, Gloucester lacrosse
The senior captain did everything for the Fishermen this spring. Nelson led Gloucester in scoring but was also one of the team's standouts on defense, which was Gloucester's biggest strength. The midfielder earned first team All NEC status for the second season in a row and was at least a conference all-star for the third straight season.
Ben Oliver, Gloucester baseball
Oliver made priceless contributions to the NEC North champion Fishermen in a wide variety of roles this spring, excelling in all of them. The All NEC performer was one of, if not the best No. 2 pitcher in the NEC and could have been an ace on most squads. He was also Gloucester's most reliable bat, hitting for power and average. In the field, Oliver saw time at several different positions on the infield.
Dylan Wilson, Manchester Essex baseball
Another versatile veteran on the Division 4 state champs. Wilson was a rock on the mound for the Hornets this spring, earning the save in the State Semifinals and State Finals while earning a win in the Sectional Quarterfinals. The All Cape Ann League performer had seven wins on the season and was a potent bat in the middle of the Hornet's batting order.