Like a couple of local media members before him, Scott Sassone is moving from Bangor to Boston as his broadcasting career blossoms.
And like another Bangor television reporter, his spouse is following him — eventually.
The former announcer and board operator at Bangor all-sports station WZON (620 AM) has been a “backpack journalist” at Portland’s WCSH (Ch. 6) and sister television station WLBZ (Ch. 2) in Bangor for the last three years.
Starting Monday, he’ll join Nate Long and Addison’s Barry Alley at regional sports TV network Comcast SportsNet New England as a photojournalist and video editor.
Long, a former sports anchor at Bangor TV station WVII (Ch. 7) and Alley, who helped Sassone get the job interview, work for CSNNE as a producer and videographer/cameraman, respectively. Sassone’s primary workload will come from a new, live sports news and highlights program produced by CSNNE that will feature three live shows per day.
“From what I know about it, I get the sense it’ll be more of a sports news and highlights show as opposed to a talk show,” said the 32-year-old Sassone. “It’ll be on the idea of a SportsCenter type of show. It’s a pretty ambitious project. They’ve been adding to their facilities and equipment.”
The Rochester, N.Y., native and wife of seven years Kara Matuszewski, a WLBZ news anchor and reporter, will move to Manchester, N.H., Matuszewski’s hometown.
Matuszewski will continue working at WLBZ until her current station contract ends in six months.
“We’re excited,” Sassone said. “It’s a hard opportunity to pass up, as much as we enjoy living in Maine. She’s been with WCSH and WLBZ since 2001. I was at WLBZ for six months in 2001 and went over to WZON and then came back.”
“Essentially I do a little bit of everything [at WLBZ]: photographer, reporter, editor, and Web reporter,” he explained. “I was kind of a guinea pig for this position. It’s sort of a hybrid position.”
Sassone figures it was that unique blend of skills and experience that landed him the Comcast job.
“I think my versatility helps and I like the variety. I’ve climbed mountains and wind turbines and go out on boats while covering fun stuff and serious news issues,” he said. “And this new job lets me return to my sports roots and still be involved in videography.”
Not bad, considering Sassone initially hoped just applying for the Comcast post would be a chance to get his name out there in the Boston market and make it easier to apply for other jobs in the future.
“This is a good opportunity to be involved in something from the ground floor with a network having an established track record and infrastructure,” he said. “It’s exciting.”
Antonellis EL’s voice of the year
Portland Sea Dogs radio play-by-play man Mike Antonellis is the Eastern League’s 2009 broadcaster of the year.
Antonellis earned the honor through a survey of EL broadcasters and media relations directors. It’s the first time the league has conducted this kind of survey, which also named Portland’s interns as the best among Eastern League teams.
“It was media relations directors and my peers who voted on it, so it means quite a bit for me. I guess I made a good impression,” said Antonellis, who lives in Maine year round now that Sea Dogs president/general manager Charlie Eshbach found him an offseason job.
He is a news and traffic update announcer for Portland Radio Group and a Portland TV station.
“I like being around the radio station and on-air people. I’m still doing and learning,” said Antonellis. “I do three live hits a day on TV and I’m done by 9 a.m.”
And the rest of the day?
“I’ve wanted to get involved in acting for awhile, so I did some casting calls on the Cape [Cape Cod] and I’m going to be in an independent film called My Intuition where I play the part of a news anchor,” he said.
The 36-year-old Antonellis just finished his fourth year as the lead radio voice for the Sea Dogs after one season teaming with former play-by-play man Todd Jamison. The Ashland, Mass., native now lives in Old Orchard Beach and has been broadcasting EL games for six seasons and minor league ball for 13 years.
Antonellis has also called some small college football and basketball as well as American Hockey League action with the Syracuse Crunch.
Antonellis, who also finished second in the EL’s “best voice” category, teams up with Sea Dogs radio intern Aaron Goldsmith, who was voted No. 2 in the “best No. 2 radio broadcaster” category.
WZON on top of MAB Awards
Bangor all-sports radio station WZON (620 AM) came away from the Maine Association of Broadcasters awards ceremony with two firsts and two thirds.
Station program director Dale Duff and Bruce Anderson won a first for play-by-play for their call of a Hermon-Mattanawcook Academy preliminary basketball tournament overtime game. The Sports Zone also took first in the best promotion category for the Harlem Globetrotters Whistle to Win contest.
Thirds went to Jeff Solari and Clem Labree in play-by-play for their call of the Brewer-Deering state championship baseball game, and to Labree for a feature profile of Bangor’s Amy Hackett.
Bangor’s WAEI (97.1 FM) won a second in play-by-play for a broadcast of Maine-Boston College hockey game by Dan Hannigan and Larry Mahoney.