Abington announces inaugural Hall of Fame class

Abington High School has just selected eight names to its inaugural class for its newly-formed Athletic Hall of Fame. Courtesy of Shawn Reilly, here is the school's release:

Abington High School, with the support of its alumni, announced last year that it had endorsed the creation of a committee to establish the Abington High School Athletic Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame Nomination Committee drafted a process for the nomination, selection and induction of former Abington High School teams, players, coaches, administrators and community members who, by their demonstrated excellence on or off the field, have contributed to the growth and/or success of the athletic program at Abington High School.

The Committee is proud to announce that the following teams, players and coaches were nominated by the AHS community and selected to be honored in the fall of 2014 by being inducted into the Abington High School Athletic Hall of Fame:

Varsity Girls Basketball Team of 1980-81, coached by Head Coach Richard Kelly and Assistant Coach Gerald Walls. With strong rebounding, sharp-shooting guards, and relentless hustle, this team captured the 1981 Division II Girls State Basketball Championship, the only state basketball championship in school history. The team’s 27 victories in that same season is still the record for all AHS girls and boys basketball teams.

Coach Richard “Dick” Kelly, the head coach of the AHS Girls Basketball Team from 1975-1983, with an overall coaching record of 169 wins and only 20 losses. Mr. Kelly taught at AHS for 38 years and also coached tennis, golf, JV softball, JV baseball and JV basketball during his tenure at Abington High. He went on to coach at Curry College from 1983-1994 (winning another state championship) and at Emerson College from 1997-2011.

Dorothy Chartier (AHS ’81), the Boston Globe’s Division II Player of the Year in 1981, and Abington High basketball’s first 1000-point scorer. “Dottie” redefined tenacity, strength and skill in high school girls basketball, and was a captain of the 1981 State Championship Team.

Christine Donovan (AHS ’83), one of the best shooting point guards to ever play for Abington High School. She was a member of the ‘80-‘81 State Championship Team, and collected over 1,000 points in her stellar AHS career. Chris later excelled for the Stonehill College basketball team, and continues to be a loyal supporter of youth sports in Abington.

Susan (Cashman) Madden (AHS ’90), an outstanding all-around athlete for Abington High who excelled on the soccer field, and is Abington’s only High School All-American Soccer Player. Sue twice led her AHS team to the Division II state finals, and later became a Division II All-American while playing collegiate soccer at New Hampshire College.

Richard F. Morey, a beloved teacher and basketball coach at Abington High between 1925-1965; also invented the first glass basketball backboard and the portable basketball hoop. The Abington High School gymnasium was dedicated in his name in 1979.

Marcia Crooks, one of the driving forces in the development of women’s high school sports. Ms. Crooks was a physical education teacher and administrator at AHS for 39 years (1955-1994), where she spent 20 years coaching various AHS sports, including field hockey, basketball, and softball, and started the first track & field program at AHS. Ms. Crooks was recently honored in 2014 by the MIAA with the Mary Pratt Award for Lifetime Achievement.

John McSharry (AHS ’71), an outstanding 3-sport athlete for the Green Wave, who was one of AHS basketball’s premier players. John later captained and scored over 1,200 points for Bridgewater State College, and was invited to tryout with the NBA’s Indiana Pacers. With his brothers and later with his own children, John exemplified the importance of teamwork, elevated the quality of AHS basketball, and has remained a long-time advocate for Abington High School sports.

The Induction Ceremony for this first class to be honored by the AHS Athletic Hall of Fame will be held on Sunday afternoon, October 5, 2014 at the Emerald Hall (former VFW Hall) on Central Street in Abington. Friends, classmates and guests who would like to attend are urged to purchase dinner tickets in advance, as seating will be limited. Tickets are $40 per person for a family-style meal to be followed by the induction ceremony; no tickets will be available at the door.

We congratulate this first slate of honorees, who truly represent some of the finest athletes and contributors to the long history of sports at Abington High School, and encourage community members to submit their nominations of additional athletes and coaches to be considered for future induction into the AHS Athletic Hall of Fame. To obtain a nomination form, or to purchase tickets to the 2014 Induction Ceremony, please call (617) 435-3531 or send an email to KateCasey@AbingtonPS.org.