Concord’s Beinecke a big hit for third-ranked Tufts women’s softball team

A healthy Beinecke impresses at Tufts

Emily Beinecke’s numbers at the plate last season ­— a .374 average, with three homers and 23 RBIs in 30 games — for Tufts are even more impressive considering she was on the rebound from mononucleosis and dealing with injuries to both hamstrings. Now healthy, the junior second baseman from Concord is on pace for an even better season for the women’s softball program (28-4 overall, 12-0 New England Small College Athletic Conference), ranked ninth nationally in Division 3.

The Jumbos, winners of 23 games and a NESCAC tournament finalist last year, had won five consecutive games and 17 of their last 18 prior to Thursday’s doubleheader at Rhode Island College.

“Em is our best pure hitter,’’ Tufts coach Cheryl Milligan , a Marlborough resident, said of Beinecke. “There are no holes in her swing. She’s made a nice comeback.’’


A three-sport captain at Concord-Carlisle High School, Beinecke said Milligan had set realistic goals for her and kept her focused on what she needed to do to play through adversity.

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“I’m a contact hitter and I think our weight training program has also helped with my power,’’ said Beinecke, one of five local players on the Tufts team. “I’ve had more doubles this year than in previous seasons and I’m a pretty decent two-strike hitter.’’

The right-handed hitting Beinecke, who bats in the middle of the order, has struck out just twice in 104 at-bats. She is hitting .394 with two homers and is second on the team with 26 runs and 30 RBIs.

“Our depth this year has been unbelievable,’’ she added. “We have players coming off the bench who could start for other teams, and we trust one another to step in, do their job and make a difference.’’

The talented roster includes junior pitcher Rebecca DiBiase, a Wellesley High grad who is 10-2 with a 3.10 earned run average; sophomore left fielder Sara Hedtler of Wrentham (King Philip Regional), who is hitting .387; freshman outfielder Michelle Cooprider (Hopkinton High), batting .282 and playing errorless ball; and junior outfielder Liz Pinzino of Marlborough (Notre Dame Academy), who had appeared in seven games.


“No one work harder than Rebecca, who is the leader of our pitching staff,” said Milligan, reviewing the local contingent. “Sara bats leadoff, is consistent at the plate and has improved her outfield play. Michelle has been a great surprise, she made a game-saving catch for us in our fourth game in Florida, and Liz gives us outfield depth and has helped out as bullpen catcher, which shows her dedication to the team,’’ said Milligan, who starred at Tufts in the 1990s.

Her husband, Jamie Pinzino (Liz’s brother), starred on the diamond at St. John’s High in Shrewsbury and at Tufts. He is pitching coach and recruiting coordinator at the College of William & Mary.

Layman earns shot at USA hoop squad

University of Maryland-bound Jake Layman of Wrentham, a 6-foot-8 guard/forward graduating this spring from King Philip Regional, is among 24 players selected to take part in USA Basketball’s men’s U-18 national team training camp in June in Colorado Springs.

The camp will determine the USA team for the FIBA Americas Championship, June 16-20 in Brazil.

Layman was a two-time Hockomock League MVP for King Philip, where he scored 1,752 career points and hauled in 1,098 career rebounds.

Watertown plans Hall of Fame event


Watertown High's 20th anniversary Hall of Fame ceremonies will be held May 11 at the Hellenic Cultural Center at 5:30 p.m.

This year’s inductees are Chuck Papalia (class of 1953), Ron Testa ('58), Norm Hoffman ('60), Greg Murphy ('86), Renee Gaudette ('99), Bob Murgo (2000), and two state champions, the track squad in 1953 and the 1997 field hockey team. Frank Sollitto (teacher-coach) and Art Venezia ('62, school and community service) will receive special recognition awards.

Tickets are $40 and can be purchased by contacting Sal Ciccarelli at 617-924-3332 or by mailing a check to WHS Athletic Hall of Fame 228 Boylston Street, Watertown, Ma 02472.

Maimonides School wins national title

Junior Yossi Vaitsblit's driving layup was the difference as the Maimonides School of Brookline boys’ basketball team captured the Tier 3 championship, 54-52, over Or Chaim of Toronto at the recent Sarachek Tournament in New York City. Twenty Jewish high schools competed in the national event at Yeshiva University.

Coached by Joe Lamson, Maimonides' roster includes six Brookline residents: senior captains and twin brothers Yoel and Menachum Polack, senior Elie Sundel, juniors Adam Kramer and Avi Wechsler, sophomore Joe Solomont, and Vaitsblit, along with sophomore David Solooki of Newton and junior Jacob Henry of Bedford.

“We didn't really have a go-to scorer so we had to manufacture wins with great team defense,'' said Lamson, whose team won three of four games at the tournament.


Bridget McCurdy's final regular-season home game with the Babson College women's lacrosse team was memorable. After joining four teammates being honored Saturday on Senior Day, the tri-captain from Weston responded with a goal, four ground balls and three draw controls in a 13-11 win over visiting Wellesley. Babson (12-2, 6-0 New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference) will host the conference semifinals and finals Saturday and Sunday . . . Bridgewater State University junior Kenny Pennini of Millis was named Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference’s Pitcher of the Week after recording the sixth no-hitter in program history, a 5-0 win over Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. The Millis High grad also struck out a career-high 12. . . Former Belmont High track teammates Andrew Carey (Johns Hopkins University) and Chris Stadler (Haverford College), both sophomores, earned All-Centennial Conference honorable mention at its indoor championships. Another Belmont High runner, Paul Green, will be competing in the conference next season as a freshman at Swarthmore College.

Marvin Pave can be reached at marvin.pave@rcn.com.