Published on October 6th, 2019 | by Staples Soccer0
1969 Team: Together Again
The 1969 Staples soccer team has an impressive past.
They went 17-1-0. Their only loss all year was to Brien McMahon: 1-0, in the FCIAC finals. They won the state tournament in convincing and dramatic fashion, from an 8-0 victory over Wilbur Cross-New Haven, to a 1-0, sudden death win against defending champion Wethersfield in the semifinals, and on to an anticlimactic 2-0 defeat of Hartford Public in the title match.
Eleven players made the All-FCIAC first or second team, or honorable mention. An astonishing 16 went on to become college captains. And the ’69 state championship was the first of 5 straight for Staples — still a Connecticut record, in any division.
Over a dozen team members reunited Saturday, 50 years after that season. They came from as far as Michigan (with other family members coming from North Carolina).
Co-captain Steve Baumann — who starred at the University of Pennsylvania, played in the NASL, then coached at Penn — organized the event, with help from former Yale player Fred Cantor.
Players went on to careers in medicine, real estate, solar energy, business and more. Larry McFaddin, Scott McNeill and Sandy Wilder had long soccer coaching careers too.
Returnees also included Neil Brickley, Dale Hollingsworth, Steve Levin, Mark McGuire, Tracy McIntosh, Wally Salwen, Scott Shearer and Scott Williamson.
Other guests included then-JV coach, and later longtime varsity coach, Jeff Lea; former guidance counselor Bob Selverstone, and former McMahon rival Wayne Mones.
It was a fun, wonderful afternoon, celebrating the past and present. The entire 2019 varsity team came to the cafeteria to greet the ’69 team, which then headed to The Hill to watch the varsity match.
The 1969 team won’t be around in 2069, for the 100th anniversary celebration. Hopefully, the 2019 team will be there — for one of their own.