Athletics

Athletic Hall of Fame

Purpose: The Groton School Athletic Hall of Fame honors past student athletes, faculty, staff, and friends who have brought distinction through athletics to Groton School and themselves. Consideration will also be given to athletes who display a lasting commitment to the mission of Groton School.

Nominations: The committee welcomes nominations from the greater Groton School community. If you know a formmate or friend who was a standout athlete, either at Groton and/or after Prize Day, please email your nomination to amacbride@groton.org. Include the nominee's name, form year, and a brief explanation why the person should be considered for Groton's Athletic Hall of Fame. 

Inducted 2018

List of 7 items.

  • William M. Polk ’58—Headmaster 1978–2003

    Bill Polk epitomized the notion of a well-rounded athlete: as a Groton student, he played varsity football, hockey, and baseball, then went on to play all three sports at Trinity College.

    At Groton, he was captain of the football team and goalie on the undefeated 1957 hockey team, which scored fifty-one goals and held opponents to nine goals and four shut-outs. Bill received the Reginald Fincke Jr. Medal and earned eight varsity letters; he would have received three more had there been letters in hockey.

    At Trinity College, Bill played on the freshman football and baseball teams, then played on both varsity teams for three years. A founding member of Trinity’s hockey program, he was the team’s goalie for four years. As a senior, he received Trinity’s McCook Trophy for athletic achievement.

    As headmaster, Bill would occasionally assist with coaching the football and baseball teams and was supportive of all athletic teams. His afternoon runs took him past nearly every practice, and in conversation it was clear that he knew what was happening with players and teams at all levels of every sport.
  • Jonathan Choate ’60—Coach 1964–2016

    A legendary athlete and coach, Choatie played varsity football, hockey, and baseball for three years at Groton and was captain of the hockey team. His hockey career began when, as a six-foot Second Former, he was cut from the basketball team and friends urged him to come across the street to skate. He continued hockey at Colby College, playing freshman hockey then spending three years on the varsity team. He was a stalwart member of Colby’s 1962 team, one of the best in the college’s history.

    In 1964, Choatie began his legendary coaching career as Groton, spending three years as the JV hockey coach. After a year coaching Bowdoin College’s freshman team, he returned to Groton and went on to spend twelve years as head coach for boys varsity hockey and another twenty-three years as assistant coach. He then coached girls varsity hockey for five years, guiding an undefeated team in 1983. In addition, Choatie was an invaluable assistant coach of the varsity football team for twenty-four years. In 1993, the Massachusetts Football Association honored him with the Assistant Coach of the Year Award.

    A gifted teacher, Choatie approached coaching as an opportunity to help students develop their skills, self-confidence, and enduring values—while experiencing the joy of the athletic experience.
  • William F. Maguire—Coach 1985–2017

    Bill “Fire” Maguire was a teacher and cross-country running coach for over thirty years at Groton. From 2008 to 2017, he also created, led, and grew the spring track program. During his time as cross-country coach, he achieved a remarkable record of 256 wins with only sixty-three losses. His teams won the ISL championships twice and the New England championship thirteen times. His was a constant presence in the woods of the Triangle and the surrounding trails.

    Like all great coaches, Fire achieved success in part by teaching students the value of perseverance and training. Perhaps more importantly, however, he created a supportive culture that naturally led to wins. His teams developed a camaraderie that enabled a group of students in the most individualistic of sports to come together and achieve success. Whether on distance runs along the Nashua River or during intense interval workouts around the Circle, his teams managed both to have fun and work hard at the same time.

    Ultimately, through humor, sarcasm, and a genuine, easy friendship with students that would span decades, he fostered a passion and reverence for the sport. As described by a fellow coach, “Fire coached as a good teacher teaches, through relationships and humor and delight and faith that the seemingly absurd act of running through the wood has intrinsic merit—which, of course, it does.”
  • Donald A.E. Beer ’53 and Charles L. Grimes ’53

    Donald Beer and Charlie Grimes both learned to row at Groton, then went to Yale and became the “engine room” (fourth and fifth seat, respectively) of Yale’s 1956 varsity eight, which won gold for the United States at the Melbourne Olympic Games.

    The Yale 1956 crew was notable for several reasons. No other U.S. eight had ever lost an Olympic race before: they came in behind Australia and Canada in a preliminary heat, shocking rowing enthusiasts. But Yale took revenge in the second-chance race known as the repechage and earned a spot in the four-boat finals. In the race that would determine medals, Yale rowed at an unusually fast thirty-six beats per minute and won the gold medal—the only boat ever to win gold by going through the repechage. Yale’s 1956 crew also was the last college crew to win an Olympic gold medal.

    With picture-perfect form, Don was the consummate oarsman—a quiet, reliable, and steadying influence in three Yale varsity crews. Charlie was a force of nature both physically and intellectually, and his athletic ambitions extended beyond crew. Much to the consternation of Yale crew coach Jim Rathschmidt, Charlie played football in the fall and basketball in the winter. Coach Rathschmidt was reluctant to put Grimes in the varsity boat, but every boat he was in seemed to win, so the coach had no choice.

    Both athletes passed away after battles with cancer, Don in 1997 from brain cancer and Charlie in 2007 from pancreatic cancer. Charlie’s gold medal now hangs in Groton’s boathouse and his oar in the Athletic Center lobby, inspiring generations of Groton’s rowers.
  • Alexander E. Karwoski ’08

    Alex’s Olympic rowing career started at Groton in the spring of 2005; he credits his coaches, teachers, advisors, friends, and family for his success.

    After Groton, he rowed for Trinity College during his freshman year, then transferred to Cornell University, where he rowed in the varsity boat as a junior and senior. After graduation in 2012, Alex made his first national team and competed at the U-23 World Championships, finishing fourth in the men’s straight four.

    After working and coaching at Kent School in 2012–13, Alex began to train with the U.S. Rowing Training Center and competed at the 2013, 2014, and 2015 World Championships in the men’s pair, double, and eight respectively. In 2016, he was selected to the men’s eight and competed in the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, finishing fourth.

    Post-Olympics, Alex was an assistant coach at Cornell in 2016–17, then was selected to row in the men’s eight at the 2017 World Championships, where the boat finished second.

    Despite his success on the water, Alex was a talented and well-rounded athlete at Groton, earning nine varsity letters—four in cross country, three in crew, and two in basketball. He captained both the cross country and basketball teams in his Sixth Form year and led the cross country team to a New England Championship.
  • Andre F. Parris ’93

    Andre Parris earned nine varsity letters in three sports at Groton, but left an indelible mark on the soccer field. As a midfielder and forward on one of the school’s most successful boys soccer teams, he led a memorable campaign that took the team all the way to the Independent School League tournament. In that magical year, Andre scored the winning goal against a powerhouse Belmont Hill squad that was both undefeated and in the process of winning five league championships in a row. As a result of that being a weekday make-up game, the entire school was on hand to watch. Andre won numerous All-League honors, was named Boston Globe Player of the Year, was a member of the United States Under-18 National Team, and was a Parade All-American before attending Princeton University.

    At Princeton, Andre continued to leave his mark on the pitch. In his freshman year, he led the Princeton Tigers to their first playoff win since 1979 and ultimately to their first-ever Final Four, while collecting numerous awards and accolades along the way. The NCAA Rookie of the Year in 1993, Andre still holds Princeton’s record for assists in a season (12), the all-time Princeton career assist record (27), and the NCAA post-season assist record (6). He was also a member of the United States Under-20 National Team.
  • Katherine Oates Sweeny ’93

    Kate was a three-sport athlete during her five years at Groton, earning ten varsity letters in field hockey, ice hockey, and lacrosse. As a Sixth Former, she co-captained both the field hockey and ice hockey teams, and went on to receive the Cornelia Amory Frothingham Athletic Prize, given to a Sixth Form girl who demonstrates all-round athletic ability and exemplary qualities of leadership and sportsmanship. Kate also received All-League honors in field hockey and an honorable mention in ice hockey while at Groton.

    After Groton, Kate played varsity ice hockey for three years at Middlebury College, where she earned the school’s Panther Award in 1997. Her Middlebury teams earned back-to-back Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) championships in 1996 and 1997.

    Kate went on to earn a master’s degree in early childhood elementary education from New York University; she teaches and continues to coach, now working with grade schoolers, including her daughters, Macy and Walker. Kate also heads the youth lacrosse program in her hometown of Dedham, Massachusetts.

Inducted 2013

List of 6 items.

  • Gordon Gray 1951

  • Peter Gammons 1963

  • 1983 Girls Ice Hockey Team

    This was a team of skaters and athletes who by the end of the season had learned to both love and play the game of ice hockey and, in the process, become a team that was able to compile a perfect 14-0 record. They opened the season by winning the 1982 Nobles Christmas Tournament and never looked back. Their impressive accomplishment helped make girls hockey a legitimate varsity sport both at Groton and in the Independent School League. Captains Ann diBuono and Kassy Flood and their fellow Sixth Formers Sarah Barnes, Holly Hegener, and Anne Mosle did a wonderful job of leading a young team. Many of the girls on this team went on to play for the next two years and compiled a cumulative three-year record of 40-5-1.
  • Gillian Thomson 1988

  • Stephen Maturo 1993

  • Isabelle Kinsolving Farrar 1998

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