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College-Bound Athletes at St. John's Prep Spread Their Wings

College-Bound Athletes at St. John's Prep Spread Their Wings

School celebrates 30 Eagles scholar-athletes taking the next step as more NCAA signing dates arrive

St. John’s Prep athletics is proud to recognize 30 Eagles student-athletes who have made commitments to compete at the college of their choice. Scholar-athletes representing eight sports inked commitment letters on Tuesday during the ongoing NCAA signing periods.

The outflow of future college athletes from the Prep campus mirrors the recent success of Eagles athletic teams. After all, St. John’s athletics captured 20 state and New England titles from October 2021 through June 2023 and has added five more MIAA championships and a New England title to this point in the 2023-24 academic year.

“This is one of those annual events that never loses its appeal,” said St. John’s Prep Athletic Director Jameson Pelkey. “These student-athletes own a tremendous commitment to excel and it’s a remarkable accomplishment for them along with their families, teammates and coaches. You don’t become a viable collegiate student-athlete overnight. It takes years of time, energy and desire and the most important phase takes place here. We’re proud to have shared in their journey and we’re excited to follow their progress at the next level.”

This recruiting window’s signees from St. John’s, who represent 19 cities and towns in the Commonwealth and two communities in New Hampshire, are listed by sport and position below. Six of these athletes’ head coaches across the eight sports are also St. John’s graduates. 

A primary provision of the NCAA National Letter of Intent program is that competing collegiate athletic programs must cease recruitment of a prospective student-athlete once an NLI is signed with another institution. Athletic scholarship aid is renewed on an annual basis at the discretion of each school’s athletic department.

The signing period for Division I collegiate football ended on April 1, while basketball’s signing window closes May 15. Division II football student-athletes along with all those who play other Division I and II sports must sign by August 1. In conjunction with the NCAA’s early signing window last December, the Prep announced another seven signees across six sports earlier this year.


LHP Alex Cianciaruso (North Andover; 6-foot-1, 230; BR/TL), Clark University 
OF Gavin Gold (Beverly; 5-foot-10, 165; BR/TR), Endicott College
C Jack Growney (Reading; 6-foot, 180 pounds; BR/TR), St. Lawrence University (N.Y.)
RHP/1B Jack Sarno (Newbury; 6-foot-4, 220; BR/TR), Northern Essex Community College

Danny Letarte ’86 (Rowley) on Cianciaruso: “Alex has been an outstanding three-year, left-handed reliever for us and has had some great outings over his career.”

Letarte on Gold: “Gavin is having a great senior season and makes some outstanding plays in the outfield. He’s going to a nationally ranked program, where he will continue his progression. 

Letarte on Growney: “Jack has been doing an outstanding job behind the plate for us and should be an impact player at the collegiate level.”

Letarte on Sarno: “Jack is enjoying a great spring and will continue to improve and progress. He has outstanding future potential at the college level.”


Marquese Avery (Lynn; 6-foot-1, 205; OLB), University of Rhode Island
Matt Callahan (Marblehead; 6-foot, 215; LB), Amherst College
John Droggitis (Peabody; 5-foot-11, 235; LB), Union College
Wells Gillett (Marblehead; 6-foot, 260 pounds; OL), Franklin & Marshall (Pa.)
Jack Hayes (Andover; 5-foot-8, 140; P/K), Sacred Heart University

Brian St. Pierre ’98 (Georgetown) on Avery: “Marquese is a very versatile guy. He can play multiple positions on defense. He has length and good lateral quickness. He plays with a great motor and can be a very disruptive presence.”

St. Pierre on Callahan: “Matt was so solid for us. He’s a student of the game and is capable of playing both inside and outside linebacker. He was a steadying force for our defense and a very good leader.”

St. Pierre on Droggitis: “John really anchored the middle of our defense from his inside linebacker position. He is very strong physically and has a high football IQ. He was reliable and made all the calls for us defensively.”

St. Pierre on Gillett: “Wells was the emotional leader for our offensive line. He plays with enthusiasm and energy. He’s athletic and quick. His ability to pull and get out in front of the runner to get on his block was a particular strength of his.”

St. Pierre on Hayes: “Jack was a soccer player who decided to give football a try as a sophomore. He worked hard to become our punter and did a very good job for us this past season. His ability to place-kick as well gives him positional versatility in college.”


Terry Manning (Georgetown; 6-foot-2, 167 pounds), Merrimack College

Brian Jasiak ’07 (Wayland) on Manning: “Merrimack College is getting an incredible teammate, leader and one of the most talented players our golf program has ever had. I can’t wait to watch Terry continue his golf progression at the next level.”


Grayson Ambrosh (Danvers; 6-foot, 195 pounds; Midfield), Babson College
Jack Doherty (Marblehead; 6-foot-1, 200 pounds; Midfield), Wesleyan
Ben Merena (Middleton; 6-foot-1, 190 pounds; Attack), Endicott College
Brendan Powers (Lynnfield; 6-foot-1, 190 pounds; Midfield), Union College
Kurt Schillinger (Marblehead; 6-foot-2, 205 pounds; Defense), Connecticut College

John Pynchon ’01 (Ipswich) on Ambrosh: “Grayson is an outstanding athlete who has developed into one of our team’s best defenders. We’re excited to see him continue his career at Babson next year, where he will join his brother, Tyee.”

Pynchon on Doherty: “Jack is a skilled face-off man who’s become one of the toughest players on our team. He’s scrappy and competes at a high level for every ground ball. Jack will be joining a number of other former Eagles at Wesleyan this fall.”

Pynchon on Merena: “Ben is a crafty attackman who plays the game with style. He’s excellent around the crease and has a natural ability to put the ball in the net. Ben should compete right away next year at Endicott.”

Pynchon on Powers: “Brendan is a skilled playmaker. He has great hands and vision which allow him to create offense in multiple areas of the field. Brendan should make an immediate impact at Union next year.”

Pynchon on Schillinger: “Kurt has become an excellent long stick midfielder for us. He’s skilled on ground balls and face-off wings. We’re excited to see him continue his career at Connecticut College.”


Alexander Brescio (Amesbury; 5-foot-7, 170 pounds; Scrum half), Northeastern University
Myles Horkan (Andover; 6-foot, 175 pounds; Centre/Flyhalf), Fairfield University
Jonathan Pasterczyk (Raymond, N.H.; 5-foot-9, 240 pounds; Prop), Tufts University
Luke Rinklin (Andover; 5-foot-11, 155 pounds; Flyhalf), Fairfield University
Lucas Weisman (Andover; 5-foot-10, 165 pounds; Fullback), Tufts University

Thomas Clark (Acton) on Brescio: “Alex is always working to improve his skills and be the best player he can be. His calm approach to the game and quiet leadership influence everyone around him.” 
Clark on Horkan: “Myles is the kind of player that every coach wants on their team. He loves the game, works hard and never steps on the pitch without giving it his best effort.”

Clark on Pasterczyk: “‘Johnny P’ is an absolute wrecking ball on the rugby pitch. He is not only strong and physical, but also skilled, intelligent and hard-working.”

Clark on Rinklin: “Luke is the heart and soul of our team. He’s an incredibly skilled player with great attitude, intelligence and leadership. He will go on to be a top collegiate athlete.”

Clark on Weisman: “Lucas’s greatest attribute is his commitment to working hard and supporting his fellow teammates. He is selfless, hardworking and a pleasure to be around.”


Chance Prouty (Danvers; 5-foot-8, 155 pounds; Forward), St. Anselm College
Asefa Thome (Melrose; 5-foot-10, 160 pounds; Forward), Sarah Lawrence College (N.Y.)

Dave Crowell (Beverly) on Prouty: “Chase is going to succeed at the next level because he has a tremendous work ethic. He’s a very coachable kid, he’s gifted with speed and a tenacity that will help distance him from his competition at the collegiate level. He’s also a big game player. One of the best things about him is his versatility. He can play as a straight up forward but also excels on the wing.”

Crowell on Thome: “Asefa possesses excellent dribbling skills and a strong shot with either foot. He’s a solid winger and a difficult one-v-one matchup, making him a goal-scoring threat whenever he has the ball in the offensive third.”


CJ Eaton (South Hampton, N.H.; 5-foot-8, 165 pounds; Freestyle), Bentley University
Flynn McDonnell (Wenham; 5-foot-9, 165 pounds; Freestyle/Backstroke), Hamilton College (N.Y.)

Jeff Fiore ’08 (Newburyport) on Eaton: “Our loudest and proudest aquatic Eagle, CJ is a fighter and a voracious supporter of his teammates. He gave it 100 percent every day for all four years and was a pleasure to coach. He doesn’t give up and he brought out the best in our team.” 

Fiore on McDonnell: “Flynn finished out his Prep swimming career with outstanding performances at the state championships. I’ve coached him since 7th grade on the Prep Middle School team and am very proud of his development. He’s an outstanding young man who has a great attitude and work ethic.”


Tireni Asenuga (Peabody; JMP/HUR), Holy Cross
Aithan Bezanson (Danvers; JMP/THR/MID), Babson College
Brendan Burke (Gloucester; SPR), Bowdoin College
Nick Elward (Ipswich; THR), Babson College
Nick MacDonald (Melrose; MID/DIS), Vassar College
Will Pechinsky (Lexington; MID/DIS), Colorado College
Andrew Vigneaux (Boxford; SPR/HUR/FMP), Middlebury College

Zach Lankow ’07 (Andover) on Asenuga: “One of the best jumpers in Prep history. He’s great in all three (long, triple, high) and he’s a state champ in the triple. Holy Cross is getting a supreme athlete, but an even better person.”

Lankow on Bezanson: “He’s the most versatile multi-discipline athlete in school history. He owns school records in the pentathlon indoors and out, the decathlon, the 400 hurdles, the shuttle hurdles indoors and outdoors and more. He earned All-American status in the pentathlon in 2023. He’s also a future coach in the making. Aithan is an exceptional athlete and leader and will thrive at Babson.”

Lankow on Burke: “As a relay specialist, there aren’t many more competitive kids in the state than Brendan with a baton in his hand.”

Lankow on Elward: “A great workhorse in the discus and shot. He is a student of the sport and cares about his teammates as much as he does his own performance.”

Lankow on MacDonald: “A great leader and mentor for others. A true mid-distance talent with great possibilities ahead.”

Lankow on Pechinsky: “He’s worked his tail off to get where he is today on the track, racecourse, and weightroom.”

Lankow on Vigneaux: “One of the best and most versatile athletes at the school. He’s a student of the sport, a great leader, and fierce competitor.”