The 24th annual Fairhaven High School Hall of Fame Induction Banquet is scheduled for June 25 at the Century House in Acushnet and a five-sport varsity letter winner headlines the latest list of inductees.
William “Biff” MacLean (Class of 1954) is among five former Fairhaven High School athletes who will be honored in this year’s annual induction ceremony, which also will feature the induction of a long-time tennis coach and a 1982 graduate who will enter the “Hall” as a Lifetime Achiever. The 2007 girls volleyball team will be honored as this year’s “Memorable Season” winner for finishing the regular season as South Coast Conference champions and completing the regular-season undefeated (20-0) before losing in the South Sectional Championship game.
In addition to MacLean, this year’s former athletes to be inducted include Matt Gamache (Class of 1978), Peter Joseph (Class of 1994), Alison Carey (Class of 2000) and Matthew Ponte (Class of 2001). Edward Twarog will be inducted as a tennis coach and Brian Pimental (Class of 1982) as a Lifetime Achiever.
Tickets are $35 and may be obtained by contacting Bob Foster at firstname.lastname@example.org. The night begins with a social hour from 5-7 followed by dinner and the induction and awards ceremonies.
Whether you see him as an athlete or a Lifetime Achiever, the man everyone knows as “Biff” is a bonafide Fairhaven Hall of Famer. As an athlete, he earned more varsity letters in one season (five) than years he actually spent as a high school student. He earned the first of 14 letters as an eighth-grade member of the high school football team and, despite a diminutive frame, ran as hard as any football running back in the area for five seasons, earning All-Bristol County honors twice. “Biff” also played five seasons of baseball and basketball earning All-Bristol County honors in both sports. His other varsity letters came in track and tennis. He was also class president in both his sophomore and junior years and vice-president of the Student Council as a senior. As a political figure, he served as State Representative and State Senator, played a prominent role in the creation of the Fort Phoenix State Park and the expansion of Southeastern Massachusetts Technical Institute into what became Southeastern Massachusetts University and, later, UMass Dartmouth. “Biff” represented Southeastern Massachusetts in the state legislature for 32 years and worked tirelessly for his constituents and region. His list of accomplishments is long and impressive and includes numerous bills he sponsored and legislation that benefited the Town of Fairhaven and the entire South Coast.
He was a record-setting member of the school’s 1976 and ‘78 track teams and played a key role in the 1977-78 basketball team’s drive to to reach the Div. 2 State Championship game. As a sophomore track star, he broke the school’s long-jump and triple-jump records and set a new standard in the 220 event. That same year, Matt was a first-place winner in the Div. 2 Conference Meet and helped lead his team to first place in the Southeastern Massachusetts Conference. A severe back injury forced him to miss his junior track seasons but Matt came back in the spring season of his senior year to break the school long jump record with a leap of 21-feet, 6-inches, and was a member of the school’s record-breaking 4x110 relay team. In basketball, his forte was rebounding and defense and he was a member of three varsity teams, including his senior year when was a key member of the team that captured the Div. 2 South Sectional Championship and runner-up spot in the State Championship game. Matt resides in Fairhaven where he owns and operates both the Courtyard Restaurant and Jake’s Diner. He also spent 14 years on the coaching staffs at Fairhaven High School with the football, basketball and track teams.
A varsity letter winner in three sports -- football, basketball and baseball -- Peter played a vital role in each one. As a senior, he quarterbacked the football team to an 8-2 record, scoring 11 touchdowns and rushing for just under 1,000 yards. He was named to The Standard-Times and South Coast Conference All-Star teams and was nominated for the prestigious Otto Graham Achievement Award. In basketball, he averaged 15.9 points a game, finishing 10th among all area scorers, and, again, was named to The Standard-Times and SCC All-Star teams. In the spring, Peter was a catcher on the baseball team and, in his senior year, he hit .359 and received Honorable Mention consideration on the South Coast Conference team. Peter resides in Fairhaven with his wife and children. He has volunteered his time as a coach for numerous sports teams in the area and has served as a volunteer coach with the Fairhaven High School football team.
She became the first female basketball player to score 1,000 career points at Fairhaven, reaching the mark in her final season against Harwich. Alison finished her career as the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,063 points, a record that would stand until 2008. She enters the Hall of Fame as one of only five female athletes to score 1,000 points in her career. Her all-around ability on the basketball court earned her All-Star status in her final two years at Fairhaven. As a junior co-captain, Alison helped the Lady Blue Devils qualify for the tournament by averaging 15.5 points, 6.7 rebounds and ranking high among team leaders in both field goal and free throw shooting percentage as well as 3-point field goals and steals. Her coach, Glenn Gardner, called Alison “the top player, overall, I’ve ever coached.” In addition to basketball, Alison was a four-year member of the tennis team and, in her senior year, ran her personal record to 11-0 to help the Lady Blue Devils knock off previously undefeated Dighton-Rehoboth, 3-2.
Although he was an All-Star in all three sports he played in high school, Matt wrote most of his headlines in baseball. He did enough of the little things to lead his football and basketball teams to a series of successful seasons but, on the diamond, he did everything well enough to earn the label of Standard-Times Player of the Year in his senior year. As a pitcher he posted a somewhat modest record of 6-3 but boasted a microscopic ERA of 1.18 in helping the Blue Devils qualify for the South Sectional Tournament. With the bat, he hit a hard .451 and drove in 15 runs on the strength of 21 base hits. With Matt playing the lead role, Fairhaven claimed the South Coast Conference baseball championship in both his junior and senior years. His success on the baseball field helped pave the way to a record-setting career at Wheaton College, where he graduated as the school’s career-leader in innings pitched (88.2) and complete games with seven. Matt enjoyed a five-year college coaching career and presently lives in Fairhaven with his wife, Erin, and their two sons, Jackson and Carter.
Replacing George Cook as the school’s tennis coach in 1957, Ed remained in that position until retiring in the early 1970s. Graduating from New Bedford High School in 1934, the Whaling City native enrolled at the University of Alabama where he received a Bachelor’s Degree in Science and Business Administration and also was a player/coach for the university’s tennis team. As a tennis player, he was a legend in the Greater New Bedford area, winning or sharing multiple city singles and doubles championships. After taking the coaching reins at Fairhaven, he guided the Blues to several successful seasons and helped mold the careers of future Fairhaven Hall of Famers Frank Fletcher, Barry Behn, Tom Mendell, Pete Mendell and Kenny Lanoue. His demeanor and knowledge of the game was recognized by his peers and Ed was unanimously voted president of the Southeastern Massachusetts Tennis League for seven consecutive seasons.
The 1982 graduate is being honored in recognition for his lifelong achievements as an artist, director and screenwriter of animated films, including his outstanding work in many notable Disney productions. Following his graduation from high school, Brian enrolled at the California Institute of the Arts and when student films he created there caught the attention of Disney, the Fairhaven graduate earned his first professional job working on Disney’s Sport Goofy and, later, on Universal’s An American Tail while he was an undergraduate student. After four years of intense study and training, Brian earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in 1986 and was hired full-time by Disney to work as an animator on Oliver and Co. and The Little Mermaid. But Brian’s passion was “the story” and after a great deal of hard work and determination he was promoted to a story artist position on Beauty and the Beast for which he created the “Be Our Guest” and “Human Again” sequences. Brian went on to become one of the screenwriters on A Goofy Movie and he earned his first ASIFA Award nomination for his work on Head of Story. He is currently working independently as a director/writer of animated films and resides in West Hollywood, California.
2007 Girls Volleyball Team
Coach Karen (Olsen) Arsenault guided the team through a 16-0 South Coast Conference championship season and a 20-0 regular season before losing in the South Sectional title game to Bourne. Overall the team finished with a record of 23-1 and lost just eight sets all season. The main contributors from that team included co-captains Kathryne Olsen and Kaleigh Charette, Maggie Rossi, Erin Baldwin, Samantha Olsen, Amanda Camara, Hannah Hennessy, Ashley Duarte, Avery Moore, Mary Dufrane and Tiffany Silva.