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May 25. 2013 12:10AM

John Habib's City Sports: Gosselin stepping down as city AD

Manchester superintendent of schools Thomas Brennan confirmed this week that Dave Gosselin is stepping down as athletics director, effective when Gosselin’s contract expires on June 30.

Gosselin’s resignation came as a surprise to school board member Art Beaudry, a former chairman of the board’s committee on athletics.

“Now that I’m not on athletics, I don’t see or talk to Dave as much, but because he’s still a fairly young man, I thought he’d stay longer,” said Beaudry. “The job is a painstaking one, but Dave did what was asked of him and did it well.”

The job has been posted on the school district’s website as a part-time position with a salary range of $35,000-$37,000.

Gosselin first served as a full-time athletics director and remained in the position when the school board made the job part-time amid city-wide budget cuts four years ago.

Beaudry, representing Ward 9, voted in favor of making the job part-time but said he now would consider making it full-time again.

“At the time I voted in favor of making it part-time, Dave agreed to stay,” said Beaudry. “He had done the job well, and keeping him in that position made sense to me. I don’t know what the district will do this time. I know working that job part-time is difficult. There’s a lot of schools in the city, and it’s a lot of work for one person on a part-time basis.”

The city AD does have assistance, with Central, Memorial and West high schools each having its own director of athletics.

Beaudry said that while the city AD job currently is posted as part-time, that could change.

“We can bring it up for discussion, and, if it’s the wish of the board, we can re-post it as a full-time job,” he said.

Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas, who lauded Gosselin’s job performance, didn’t exactly embrace the idea of returning the AD position to full-time.

“We’ll have to look at the budget process,” said Gatsas. “If the board wants to make that job full-time, they have to show where they can fund it.”

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BEAUDRY said he also was surprised to learn that Manchester Central’s first-year baseball coach, Kevin O’Leary, had no prior varsity or junior varsity head-coaching experience.

“I assumed the athletics committee vetted him,” said Beaudry. “Based on the committee’s recommendation of hiring him, I assumed he was qualified and voted in favor of hiring him. Had I known he had no experience, I would have recommended Nick Jaskolka or Adam Lawrence, who both put in for the job and are both teachers in Manchester.”

Lawrence ended up taking the head-coaching job at Goffstown, which just earned the top seed in the NHIAA Division II tournament with a 17-1 regular-season record.

Jaskolka became head coach at Merrimack, where he had the Tomahawks at 11-6 and in third place entering Friday’s regular-season finale against Alvirne of Hudson.

Central (4-14) will not qualify for the Division I state tournament.

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THE QUEEN City Rotary Club recently honored Sally Dreckmann, president of the Manchester Central Little League, with its 2013 Service to Youth Award.

“I was totally surprised because I don’t do this for awards,” Dreckmann said.

Dreckman’s service to Central Little League spans 18 years, the last 14 as president. This season, the league includes 300 players.

“I started contributing to the league as a parent when my son was in tee ball,” Dreckman said. “We have a lot of good kids, and I’ve never turned away any kid since my time as president. If a kid can’t afford to pay the registration fee, that kid still plays. Every child should experience the chance to play Little League baseball.”

Manchester Central is the oldest Little League in the state.

“We chartered our program in 1949, one day ahead of Concord National Little League,” Dreckman said.

Central recently received word from District I state commissioner Don Kirkland that it will host state tournaments at three levels: Majors (ages 11 and 12), ages 10-11 and ages 9-10.

“We held the state tournament approximately 10 seasons ago, and it was a wonderful experience,” said Dreckmann. “Our community supported us, and I’m expecting a similar experience again this summer.”

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FREE PHYSICALS: The New Hampshire Musculoskeletal Institute’s Safe Sports Network will provide free sports physical exams to athletes ages 11-18 on Thursday, June 6, in Manchester.

The New Hampshire Orthopaedic Center and Apple Therapy Services are donating their clinic space at 35 Kosciuszko St. for the physicals, which will be conducted from 5:30-7:30 p.m. The physicals will meet the requirements of school athletics programs.

Safe Sports Network founder Nick Vailas — CEO of Apple Therapy, member of the NH Musculoskeletal Institute’s board of directors and a former state commissioner of the Department of Health and Human Services — instituted the physicals program in 1989 after observing a Manchester Central student watching football practice from outside the fence surrounding the field. When Vailas asked the boy why he wasn’t playing, the boy told him he couldn’t afford the requisite physical.

Since then, Safe Sports Network has delivered more than 7,000 free physicals.

Athletes who have completed the required form and submitted it before noon on June 6 will be moved ahead of others in line. The form is available at www.nhmi.net/free_physicals.php.

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TRINITY High’s Junior Varsity Baseball Invitational Tournament takes place today and tomorrow at Derryfield Park’s Al Lemire Field.

Here are today’s scheduled match-ups: Central vs. Pinkerton Academy of Derry, 9:30 a.m.; Concord vs. Salem, noon; Goffstown vs. Memorial, 2:30 p.m.; Trinity vs. Merrimack, 5 p.m.

Tomorrow, losers’ bracket games are at 9:30 a.m. and noon, winners’ bracket games at 2:30 and 5 p.m. The championship round is scheduled to begin Monday at 10 a.m.

“City Sports” appears Saturdays in the New Hampshire Union Leader. Email staff reporter John Habib at jhabib@unionleader.com.


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