By Roger Brown
Although February is the heart of high school basketball and hockey seasons in New Hampshire, football has been making plenty of headlines recently.
Two schools – Concord and Monadnock Regional – hired new head coaches last week, and the New Hampshire roster for this year’s Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl was also released.
* Erik Brown was selected to replace Bob Camirand as Concord’s head coach. Brown became the 24th head coach in the program’s 111-year history.
Brown, who is a physical education teacher at Concord High School, was an assistant on Camirand’s staff last season. Brown was an assistant coach at Trinity under Jack Gati, but moved to Concord when Gati became the head coach there. Brown remained at Concord when Camirand replaced Gati in 1993 and served as the defensive coordinator on Camirand’s staff.
Camirand retired following the 2008 season. Concord had an 86-68 record in his 15 years as the program’s head coach.
Camirand guided the Crimson Tide to three Division I championship games and the Division I title in 2000. Concord finished above the .500-mark in 10 of his 15 seasons.
* Monadnock chose Linwood Patnode as its varsity head coach. Patnode spent the last four seasons as an assistant coach on John Luopa’s staff at Keene.
Patnode, a 1975 Monadnock Regional graduate, was one of three finalists for the position. He replaces Keith Wood, who had a 6-24 record in three seasons as Monadnock’s head coach.
Patnode helped Keene earn its first playoff berth since 2004 last season.
* The 36-player New Hampshire roster for the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl, an all-star game between New Hampshire and Vermont that will be played Aug. 1 at Windsor (Vt.) High School:
Jeff Agnew (Milford), Cody Anderson (Kearsarge), Christian Birt (Laconia), Ray Boulay (Keene), Colin Brown (Concord), Alex Deyeso (Londonderry), Kyle Endyke (Bishop Guertin), Peter Evans (Laconia), Thomas Foote (Goffstown), Rick Fosher (Trinity), Chris George (Pinkerton), Jake Gingras (Newport), Ian Ginnard (Souhegan), Bill Helliwell (Pelham), Dan Herrick (Concord), Gallagher Hogan (Portsmouth), Matthew Janetos (St. Thomas), Andrew Kukesh (Exeter), Peter LaBreck (Plymouth), Phil Laflamme (Plymouth), Tyler Long (Dover), Jameson Luks (Souhegan), Mark McCartney (Campbell), Jermaine McDay (Keene), Abe Muniz (Franklin), Brian Nicoll (Timberlane), Joshua Nitso (Londonderry), Seamus O’Neill (Manchester Central), Eric Rajkowski (Exeter), Ryan Raymond (Pinkerton Academy), Kile Stetson (Merrimack), Alex Thurston (Merrimack Valley), Jacob Tremblay (Manchester Central), Austyn Turner (Franklin), Andy Vailas (Bishop Guertin) and Bruce Vieira (Pelham).
Girls Basketball: Winnacunnet Passes Tough Test
Winnacunnet cleared what may have been the biggest hurdle remaining on its regular-season schedule when it beat Exeter, 76-45, Friday night in a rivalry game that’s often won by the underdog.
The victory raised Winnacunnet’s record to 12-0. The Warriors are the only unbeaten team in Class L, and are attempting to become the first Class L girls program since Nashua High School (1999-2001) to win three consecutive Class L titles.
Winnacunnet point guard Tiffany Ruffin led all scorers with 26 points. The loss dropped Exeter’s record to 7-5.
Boys Basketball: Williams Joins Elite Company
Senior guard Curtis Williams became the 10th Newmarket boys basketball player to score 1,000 points during his high school career when he tossed in a game-high 19 points to lead the Mules to a 57-45 triumph over Pittsfield on Friday.
“He worked really hard to get to this level and it’s great to reward him for that effort,” Newmarket coach Jamie Hayes said.