Hello Concord, meet Matt Parker. What do you want him to write about?

  • Matt Parker, Monitor sports

Monitor sports
Published: 9/7/2021 6:07:58 PM

Hello, Concord.

This is a bit overdue on my part, but since I started a couple weeks ago, it’s been more important to me to write sports stories that matter and not about myself.

Not only was it imperative to write the stories, but even more so to learn the community and the ins-and-outs of the sports scene in Concord and surrounding areas.

But with it being a slow start to the week, courtesy of Labor Day weekend and no games played yesterday, here I am writing my introduction to our readership.

I am Matt Parker, the young and eager sports writer from Ohio. I have spent my entire life born and raised in Columbus, both my home state’s capital and where one of the many Meccas of college football exist – Ohio State.

All types of football are central to my identity. Whether it’s high school, college or the pros, if there’s a game happening, I want to be there and I want to watch it. Quickly, I have learned that New Hampshire isn’t as football crazy, but the passion is still there from fans and supporters – p.s. if there are other Buckeye fans in the area, don’t be afraid to reach out.

What I’m really passionate about, however, are telling the stories of high school sports and becoming part of the community. It’s exciting to move to a completely new location in a new spot of the country and have to learn the sports infrastructure.

Whether it’s watching Concord play at Memorial Field under the lights, Bow and Merrimack Valley fight their way through a gritty Division II schedule or Hopkinton go on another state title run, it’s important to me that all these stories get told. And not just the on-the-field or court stories, but the ones about the athletes personally. What makes them excel in the game and outside of it.

I already have appreciated the feedback I have received from our readership. This welcoming community has made this misplaced Midwesterner feel a sense of home.

What I’ve seen

Part of feeling at home is being around sports. So I was inspired when I watched Concord senior defensive back Kaevryel Madison never hang his head after letting two interceptions slip away. In fact, he kept pushing himself against Spaulding in Concord’s season opener. The defense saw one of its leaders not get down on himself and go to the next play. They had to be inspired, too.

When I watched sophomore goalie Trevor Simmonds step in place for an injured Jack Wormald during Merrimack Valley’s game against Oyster River a week ago, Simmonds never missed a step. He played brilliantly and led the charge for a 2-2 draw against the reigning state champions. It felt like home.

Watching Elizabeth Blinn, a senior on the Concord girls’ volleyball team, spike the ball in a sweep over Manchester Memorial just as easily as breathing felt like home.

More to come

In the coming weeks, I have planned some new things for the Monitor sports section. There are some elements that I would like to bring back as they were, and other things in a reshaped capacity.

My email is always open for tips, feedback and even story ideas. I can’t guarantee that every single thing will be written, but it can at least come across my screen and I can investigate it.

I’m not the be-all-end-all sports writer, that is for sure. Many of you are used to my predecessor Tim O’Sullivan and his style. While he and I have never met, I am thankful for the foundation that he has laid out for me. A big shout out to our part-time sports writer, Dan Attorri.

Dan nearly caught me up to full speed prior to me moving to New Hampshire and my first day here was spent chasing after a story, not learning the computer programs.

My overall goal is to inform our readers of the successes that happen daily in high school sports. I can’t wait for the championship runs, the beauty of victory and in a rare moment, the agony of defeat.

Here’s to a fun-filled 2021-22 sports season. May it bring all of us much more joy and excitement than the year prior.

You can reach me at mparker@cmonitor.com.

Matt Parker bio photo

Matt Parker is a sports reporter at the Monitor and started in August 2021. He is an Ohio native and relishes being from the Buckeye state. A proud graduate of Ohio University located in Athens, Ohio, he served as the sports editor for the student-run newspaper, The Post, from 2019-20. When not at a game or chasing around a coach, you can catch him playing his guitars or looking for the next Peanuts memorabilia piece to add in his growing collection.


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