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CATCHING UP WITH

Catching up with ... Judith Hinchey, Newton North High/Tufts University

A three-sport captain at Newton North, and a two-sport athlete at Tufts, Judith Hinchey is now a staff neurologist at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center.
A three-sport captain at Newton North, and a two-sport athlete at Tufts, Judith Hinchey is now a staff neurologist at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center.St. Elizabeth's Medical Center

Judy Hinchey and her doubles partner at Newton North High School, Allison McCarthy, were trailing 5-3 in the third set of their Division 1 girls’ state tennis final in 1980.

But Hinchey, the team captain, and McCarthy maintained their poise and took the deciding set, 7-6, winning a 5-1 tiebreaker over a Winchester High duo to cap a 21-0 season for the Tigers.

Hinchey, who also captained the girls’ soccer and basketball teams as a senior at Newton North, was inducted into the school’s athletic hall of fame in 2008.

“It was a quite a run my senior year,” recalled the 53-year-old Hinchey, now a staff neurologist at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center in Boston. The resident of Newton’s Auburndale section is also an assistant professor at Tufts University Medical School (she is a 1990 graduate). “Our soccer and basketball teams made it to the state semifinals and finals, and so going out with a state championship in tennis was amazing.”

She had grown up on the tennis courts at Longwood Cricket Club in Chestnut Hill, playing with her parents and siblings and where she is still a member.

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Hinchey went on to play soccer and basketball at Tufts; however, a torn left anterior cruciate ligament and then cartilage damage sidelined her prior to her junior season on the basketball court. An All-New England Division 3 selection on the soccer field that fall, she assisted the coaching staff her senior season.

Hinchey hails from a family of doctors, and athletes.

Her father, the late Thomas Hinchey, was a neurosurgeon at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, Waltham Hospital, and Newton-Wellesley Hospital, and was president of the medical staff at St. Elizabeth’s and Waltham.

“He was caring and compassionate, qualities that I admired and have done my best to emulate,’’ said Hinchey. “I grew up playing sports with my five older brothers — when they allowed me to — and that helped me develop as an athlete.”

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Her brother, Kevin, who played quarterback at Newton North and Williams College, is an internist at Bay State Medical Center in Springfield.

Another brother, Edward, played football at Newton North, and a third sibling, Michael, played basketball at St. Sebastian’s School and at the University of Notre Dame.

Hinchey had knee replacement surgery last fall, but is back playing tennis, and, when time and her health allow, she hopes to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania.

“I was supposed to go there two years ago, but six days before we left I injured my knee again,’’ said Hinchey, a fellow of the American Heart Association’s Stroke Council.

She said being an athlete has enhanced her life.

“Sports has given me confidence and an identity outside of the workplace,’’ she said, “and brought a lot of joy and friendship into my life.’’


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