Winnacunnet (N.H.) basketball coach Beattie steps down

Winnacunnet (N.H.) girls' basketball head coach Ed Beattie resigned Tuesday. Beattie led the Warriors to seven state titles, including a string of five straight from 2007 to 2011. Cody Smith for ESPNBoston.com

HAMPTON, N.H. – Winnacunnet High School's Ed Beattie, one of the most successful girls' basketball coaches in New England, submitted his letter of resignation Tuesday night.

Beattie said he decided that he wouldn't return for the 2012-13 season months ago, but didn't officially resign until he was offered a coaching contract for the upcoming season on Monday. He cited increased stress and a lack of support as the reasons for his decision to step away from his coaching position. Beattie is also a History teacher at Winnacunnet.

“I didn't get the kind of support that would have been necessary for me to continue,” Beattie said. “I spoke to the administration months ago and told them that I would not be returning, and I think some people were non-believers.

“I saw things that I didn't think were very good for my girls' basketball program. I tired to be professional and use the proper chain of command, but nothing has really changed on that front. I based my decision on their decision not to make changes.”

Beattie, 57, began coaching girls basketball at Winnacunnet in 1981 and guided the Warriors to 29 winning seasons. His Winnacunnet teams were 519-173 and won seven state titles, including five in a row from 2007 to 2011.

The five consecutive state championships tied a state record held by Nashua (1985-89). The 1986 Nashua team was named the No. 1 team in the country by USA Today and several other national publications.

Winnacunnet had an 84-game winning streak end during the 2011 season. In addition to it league victories, Winnacunnet built that streak by winning holiday tournaments in Maine, Massachusetts and Florida.

The 2009 Winnacunnet team won the KSA Holiday Basketball Tournament, a five-day event in Orlando, Fla. The tournament featured teams from Georgia, Pennsylvania, Oregon and Florida.

Beattie, who was inducted into the New Hampshire Coaches' Association Hall of Fame in 2006, may have been known best for his efforts to advance girls' sports. He helped form New Hampshire's first AAU girls basketball team and was also Winnacunnet's first girls soccer coach. He coached soccer from 1979 to 1989 and again from 1993 to 1998. The Winnacunnet girls' soccer team won a state title in 1983.

Beattie's father Bryce was a well-known high school basketball coach in Maine and Massachusetts. His coaching career in Massachusetts included stints at Salem, Swampscott and St. John's Prep.

Beattie made it clear that he's not done with basketball, and said it's possible he could coach at another school in the future.

“Stress was a big part of this,” he said. “I had already compromised some of the things I had to stand for. This wasn't easy. I'm not through with basketball, I'm just through with Winnacunnet basketball.”