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Sports

George Wentworth to be Inducted into New England Basketball Hall of fame
By Ken Anderson
Jul 17, 2003 - 11:34:00 PM

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Former Stearns coach, George Wentworth, is scheduled to be inducted, posthumously, into the New England Basketball Hall of Fame in a ceremony to be held on September 19 at the University of Rhode Island, in Kingston, Rhode Island.

Coach Wentworth's record while coaching Stearns High School was 478 wins to 153 losses, a great average against larger schools.

A graduate of East Maine Conference Seminary in Bucksport, Wentworth went on to play baseball at Notre Dame. As an avid tennis player and golfer, George was known for long speeches, as anyone who asked him to speak at banquets or other functions soon learned.

Upon graduating from Notre Dame, Wentworth spent a year as a student teacher in Indiana. Moving back to Maine, he spent four years at Lawrence High School in Fairfield before moving to Millinocket for the remainder of his career, coaching baseball, football, and basketball.

"That was an experience, coming to this town," Wentworth once said of Millinocket. "Back then, the town was divided up into four sections: Shack Hill, Little Italy, the Pines, and Skunk Hollow." He went on to tell his wife that Millinocket was a terrible place, because he couldn't get the kids from the different sections of town to get along with one another.

"Well, I did the best I could," he added.

A dedicated Catholic, Wentworth was a role model for his several proteges, including John Civiello, who became a priest and delivered the eulogy at Wentworth's funeral in 1999.

Some of the greatest moments in the history of Maine high school basketball have happened in Millinocket, involving George Wentworth and the Stearns Minutemen.

With Wentworth as their coach, Stearns won six Eastern Maine, four State, and one New England title; which was not bad for a small mill town.

Under Wentworth, who coached in Millinocket for 31 years, Stearns got the first backboards in the state. Stearns players enjoyed a laundry system which ensured that they would have fresh uniforms. While Wentworth was in charge, Stearns players traveled to away games in a Bangor and Aroostook bus.

In fact, it was the decision of the school to use the regular school buses that led to his decision to retire after 31 years.


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