Eight new members were inducted to the Foxcroft Academy Athletic Hall of Fame at a special ceremony held at halftime of the Ponies’ 66-13 win over Hermon in the Homecoming football game Friday night. Meet the outstanding Class of 2014:
From the Class of 1941, Jack Anderson – Known as a fierce competitor, Jack excelled for the football, basketball, and baseball teams during his four years at Foxcroft Academy. He was the first 1000-point scorer in the history of FA basketball, helped lead the football team to its first state title in 1939, and was a standout first basemen and hitter for the baseball team. Jack went on to excel in athletics at Higgins Classical Institute, Hebron Academy, Rhode Island College, and the University of Maine, and he was a very proud alumnus and dad when he watched his sons Trey and Dave contribute to the Ponies’ third football state title in 1967.
Jack’s son Dave, a member of the Class of 1969 and a 2011 Hall of Fame inductee, accepted on his behalf.
From the Class of 1941, Cliff Wiley – Cliff was a four-year letterman for the Foxcroft Academy football, basketball, and outdoor track teams, earning the prestigious Academy sweater in all three sports. A dominant inside presence at center, Cliff led the 1941 basketball team to a perfect 19-0 season, and he fondly recalls carrying wood into the Dover-Foxcroft Town Hall furnace so that he and his teammates could practice. In track, he was an integral part of a relay team that finished second in the state in the 220-meter relay. Cliff has wonderful memories of competing for the Ponies with his brothers Clair, Robert, and Earl, and he thanks all the coaches and teachers he had at FA for their lasting influence.
From the Class of 1964, Gordon Engstrom – Gordon led the Foxcroft Academy football team to its second state championship in 1963, earning team MVP honors and a Little Ten Conference First Team selection at RB. He also led the baseball team to several Penquis League titles and went on to star as a pitcher at the University of Maine, where he was named to the All Yankee Conference Team after finishing sixth in the nation in ERA. Gordon was also invited to play in the prestigious Cape Cod baseball league, where he helped lead his Falmouth team to a conference title. A solid contributor for the basketball and wrestling teams as well, Gordon credits Tillson Thomas, Walt Beaulieu, Wayne Champeon, and Al Hackett as influential figures during his time at FA.
From the Class of 1993, Sue LaPoint Drowns – Sue was a standout field hockey, basketball, and softball player for the Ponies. She was named the Most Outstanding Player for the field hockey team during her senior season in 1992 and also earned a spot on the All State Team. That winter, Sue was the Most Valuable Offensive Player for the basketball team, and that spring she was named MVP of the softball team for the second consecutive season before being named Foxcroft Academy’s 1993 Female Athlete of the Year. Sue went on to star in field hockey and softball at the University of Southern Maine, where she was named the William B. Wise Scholar-Athlete of the year in 1996 and the NCAA Women of the Year in 1997. Sue, who credits her father for her athletic ability, cites Gene Philpot as the best coach she had in her entire athletic career and was able to deliver Coach Philpot her first state title in 1991.
From the Class of 1997, Sarah Keenan Eluk – Sarah was a standout for both the indoor and outdoor track teams, winning seven individual Eastern Maine titles (three in the triple jump, three in the long jump, one in the high jump) and two state titles in the triple jump. In the spring of 1997, she broke the PVC long jump record with a leap of 16’ 9.25” and covered 37’ 5.5” in the triple jump to set a Class B state record that still stands today. Sarah was named to the All State Team that season, and she set 10 Foxcroft Academy records over the course of her track career. She cites Gary Worthing, Gary Wakeland, and George Rolleston as inspirational coaches during her time at FA.
Sarah got off to a great start as a freshman jumper for Sacred Heart University, but she snapped her achilles tendon at her first major indoor championship meet in March of 1998. She was told by doctors that she would never compete again but defied the odds by returning to competition nine months later. Two years after joining the US Army in June 2001, she injured her other achilles tendon and was told she would never run again. After five years of physical therapy, she began walking in late 2008, ran her first 5K in 2009, and completed her first half marathon at Walt Disney World in January 2013.
From the Class of 2001, Amy Kelley – Amy excelled for the Foxcroft Academy field hockey, basketball, and outdoor track and field teams. She was named to the field hockey All State Team in 1999 and 2000 and was an All Conference selection 1998-2000. In basketball, Amy was selected to the Bangor Daily News All Tournament Team in 2001 and was named to the PVC All Conference First Team in 2000 and 2001. She was also part of the state champion 4×100 meter relay team in the spring of 1999. Amy credits coaches Gene Philpot, Dave Carey, Nancy Kelley, and Bob Hartford and teachers Jim Brown, Dottie Brennan, and Doreen Emerson for the significant impact they made during her time at FA.
From the Class of 2004, Brandon Hall – Brandon is the most decorated outdoor track and field athlete in Foxcroft Academy history. A prodigious leaper, he opened his career by setting the PVC freshman record in the high jump and would go on to win seven state championships: three in the high jump, two in the long jump, and two in the triple jump. During a banner senior season, Brandon was undefeated in all three jumping events, was the New England high jump champion, set a school record with 40 points in a meet, set the state record in the high jump with a leap of 6’10”, and was named Male Track Athlete of the Year by the Portland Press Herald. Brandon was also named Second Team All Conference in both football and basketball, and he would go on play hoops at Maine Maritime Academy, where he led the team in rebounding, blocked shots, and field goal percentage for three seasons; broke the single season dunk record three consecutive years, and finished his career third in school history in rebounding and 15th in career points. Brandon singled out Gary Worthing, Gary Larson, Tom Lyford, Gene Philpot, and Wayne Strout as teachers and coaches at FA who had a great influence on him.
Dr. Richard Swett
Dr. Swett has served as Foxcroft Academy’s pro bono team orthopedist since 1979, helping countless athletes with in-game injuries, treatment, and rehabilitation–inspiring other doctors along the way to do the same. He has made life much easier for FA’s coaches, who did not have a full-time athletic trainer to work with for 31 of the 35 years Dr. Swett has lent his support. Despite retiring from Mayo Regional Hospital earlier this year, Dr. Swett will continue to treat FA athletes, be a fixture on the sidelines of football games, and be a tremendous resource for athletic trainer Jaclyn Tourtelotte, who came aboard in 2011.
“It has been an absolute luxury having Dr. Swett work with our athletes and coaches through the years,” said Foxcroft Assistant Head of School Tim Smith. “Our athletic program has certainly been more successful because of his work, and I can’t imagine what we would have done without all his help.”
Photographs taken by Chris McGary.