The Board of Directors of the Old Rochester Regional Athletic Hall of Fame is pleased and honored to announce the 2014 class of Hall of Fame inductees. The following eight individuals and one team will be inducted on Saturday, June 21 at a banquet at Old Rochester Regional High School. Information on the 2014 ORR Athletic Hall of Fame induction banquet can be found on the Hall of Fame’s web site, www.ORRAHOF.com.
Charles Jefferson ‘62: Charlie Jefferson was a man of many “firsts.” He was a member of ORR’s first graduating class, having previously attended Wareham High School, where he was an all-star football player. Charlie was named captain of ORR’s first football team, and he played in ORR’s very first interscholastic athletic competition, when his football team defeated Dighton-Rehoboth, 14-6. A tough-as-nails left guard, Charlie was the only ORR athlete to be named to the Standard Times All-Star football team that season, and he was also a Tri-County Conference All-Star. Charlie also competed in winter track and played baseball and was named Most Valuable Athlete of the Class of ’62.
Steven Heath ‘69: Steve Heath was one of the top multi-sport athletes in the area in the late 1960s. In football, Steve was a co-captain, a two-time Standard Times All-Star lineman, a Narragansett League All-Star, a Boston Globe All-Star, and was named to the All-Conference Team. Steve was an offensive powerhouse on the baseball team, played four years of basketball, and threw the shot put in spring track. He was named Most Valuable Athlete in the spring of his senior year. Steve went on to play football at Central Connecticut State College. Upon returning to the Tri-Town area, he coached football, umpired Little League, and was an integral member of the Mattapoisett Road Race committee. Steve was and is a leader both on and off the field.
Tom DeCosta ‘70: Selfless, dedicated and kind are just some of the words teammates use to describe Tom DeCosta. Tom earned 11 varsity letters during his four years at ORR. He was a standout four-year starter on the basketball team, was named team MVP his sophomore year, and was a league all-star. Playing center, he set a school record for rebounds in a single game (30). In football, Tom played end and tackle and was both a Standard Times and league all-star. In baseball, he earned four letters as a pitcher and first baseman. Tom went on to serve as a football coach for ORRHS.
Cornelia Dougall ’71: At a time when organized athletic opportunities for girls were just starting to expand, Cornelia Dougall helped raise the level of girls’ sports at ORR. A gifted multisport athlete, she was one of ORR’s first female sports stars. Cornelia competed in track and field, volleyball, field hockey, basketball and tennis. In both field hockey and basketball, she was named MVP her sophomore, junior and senior years. Cornelia was named to the SE Mass Invitational Basketball Tournament All-Tourney Team and led her field hockey and track teams to league titles. She was named Most Valuable Female Athlete her senior year. Cornelia went on to earn her doctorate degree in clinical psychology from Antioch University.
Gretchen Hamer MacDonald ’81: On her 2nd grade report card, Gretchen Hamer’s teacher wrote, “Gretchen is a lovely girl. I think she is my most competitive student.” Clearly Gretchen was born a competitor, as she was undoubtedly one of ORR’s premier female athletes in the late 70s and early 80s, excelling in volleyball, basketball and track. A versatile athlete, Gretchen earned four varsity letters in both volleyball and basketball and three in track. Gretchen was a two-time Standard Times All-Star in all three sports. A four-year starter, she was a standout volleyball player, leading ORR to three Southeastern Mass Conference championships and to the state sectional finals twice. In basketball, Gretchen’s teams were conference champions three times and made three trips to the sectional finals. In track, she shattered the school record in the javelin, excelled in the mile, and was named team MVP.
Peter Borsari ’82: Peter Borsari was one of those most dominant football players in the area in the early 1980s. A four-year starter at offensive tackle and defensive end, Peter was a physical force on the gridiron. He was named a Standard Times All-Star twice, an All Eastern Mass All-Star, a Boston Globe All-Star, and was selected to play in the prestigious Shriners All-Star game in 1981. Peter also ran track at ORR. Peter went on to play football at UMass Amherst on a scholarship.
The 1962 Cross Country Team: The 1962 Cross Country team has the great distinction of bringing the first state championship to Old Rochester Regional High School. Coached by Norm Fuller, the 1962 Cross Country team captured the Class F State Championship, which was all the more remarkable considering it was only ORRHS’s second year in existence. Five of the ORR runners who ran in the state championship meet placed in the top 20 among well over 100 runners. Congratulations to Coach Fuller and his harriers of 1962.
Coach Jim Hubbard: Sports and education have defined Coach Jim Hubbard’s life. Jim coached spring and winter track, baseball and football at ORR in the 60s and 70s. Jim coached his spring track teams to three Narragansett League titles, two South Coast Conference titles, and the 1967 Class D State Relay championship. He also served as ORR’s Athletic Director from 1975-1980, during which time he oversaw 10 sports teams each for boys and girls and served on several MIAA subcommittees. Jim earned a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in education at Bridgewater State College, where he was a three sport athlete and later inducted into BSC’s athletic hall of fame. He also had a long and distinguished career with the Cape Cod Baseball League as player, coach and manager of several teams, and was inducted into the CCBL Hall of Fame in 2006.
Andy Mendes: As a trainer during the late 1960s and 1970s, Andy Mendes’ contribution to the athletes and students of ORR was significant. But Andy was so much more than a trainer. He was instrumental in positively molding the futures of the student body whether their needs were academic, athletic, or social/emotional. He was the consummate go-to guy whenever a kid needed help. Always a classy guy and a great role model, his delicious sense of humor was appreciated by students and faculty alike. The countless unpaid hours he spent individually helping student athletes hone their skills and improve their self esteem had an immeasurable impact on so many individuals. The ORR Athletic Hall of Fame is proud to honor Andy Mendes for his significant contributions to ORR athletics.