Gary’s Update: Of Passings and New Beginnings

Our condolences go out to the families and friends of two special people from the North Shore who passed on recently:

1. Dr. Frederick O. Buckley, a prominent local physician and patriarch of the super athletic Buckley clan of Marblehead and points south and west. His son, Fred, carries on his father’s extraordinary medical legacy as an equally prominent surgeon at North Shore Medical Center.

2. Bruce Boal, long-time Tedesco golfer and founder of Boaleeco, an exporter of technical and engineering equipment for schools and universities; a true Renaissance man with an amazing variety of athletic, civic and charitable interests.

On another matter, I finally referreed on the sparkling new Beverly High basketball court and it is magnificent; a court worthy of a big-time college basketball program, let alone a North Shore public high school. The restoration of the entire fieldhouse building came out beautifully.

The beauty of the Henry Cabot Lodge Fieldhouse in Beverly motivated me to finally check out the one other local gym/fieldhouse that had been in renovation mode  —  at Danvers High. I was not disappointed. Though the game floor does not have a wood surface, it is the next best thing —  a sneaker-friendly linoleum top surface that almost looks like wood, with a bonus under layer that has a little “give,” as all top-level courts have.

Because the fieldhouse work was part of the overall Danvers High refurbishing project heavily supported by state funds, the floor surface could not be expanded, i.e. walls could not be moved. Thus, the indoor track, including sprint lanes, had to be a similar makeup as the basketball floor. Thus the end result

Moreover, Sullivan rejected the concept of changing the direction of the game court (currently north-south), to ensure the retention of the other two same-size courts and maxmizing usage of the courts  by the town’s various basketball factions.

A very nice venue for a potential championship boys team that may have the makings of the best team in school history. The Falcons have a biggie at home tomorrow night (Jan. 31) at 7 versus Beverly.

Lo and behold it’s Super Bowl Week. I believe the Giants will be favored by one point, or the rematch may become  a “pick ’em” by the Vegas oddsmakers by kickoff time Sunday. There are far more reasons why the Patriots should lose Sunday than win, but I like the Pats to pull a surprise:  Patriots 27, Giants 23. Botton line, as I wrote earlier: Tom Brady, the offensive line and the receivers MUST excel, Gronkowski or no Gronkowski. Time for Beauty Boy Brady to show us his best stuff. If he doesn’t show it here, his image will be tarnished significantly.

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