Sawtell’s new book covers Coach Conley’s decade in Brownville Jct.

By Carroll L. Conley Jr. 

    My condolences to all you high school basketball junkies; I’ll bet your withdrawal shakes are just starting now with the hoops season having ended a couple of weeks ago. What a fitting way to close out the Bangor Auditorium: Tony Hamlin and the Penquis Patriots hoisting the Gold Ball. Coach Hamlin played for my dad, Carroll Conley, in the Patriots’ first tourney appearance back in 1969 and then capped off his illustrious coaching career with a most improbable state championship. You can’t make stuff like this up —thank God we don’t have to.

    My father has missed just two tournaments since 1948; that’s 63 tourneys as a player, coach and fan. This year was no different as he climbed the bleachers to sit in the coaches’ corner for nearly every game the doors were open, and I’m so thankful I was able to sit next to him for many of those contests. Many things have changed over the years, but the essence of high school basketball has not, especially as it pertains to rural Maine.
    I’ve got good news for you addicts out there; you don’t have to go cold turkey. You might not get a chance to sit next to a basketball legend at a game right off, but you can get a glimpse of eastern Maine roundball from 1957-1968 in Bill Sawtell’s latest publication “Carroll Conley and the Decade of the Railroaders.” Bill played for coach Conley, so this book, filled with stories, photos and stats is a real labor of love. We’re very grateful Bill has chronicled dad’s years at Brownville Jct.
If you are interested in getting a copy of this piece of history, contact Bill at 965-3971.

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