Belfast High girls basketball coach Ted Rioux is heading to Waterville to serve in the same capacity next year.
Belfast athletic director Terry Kenniston said Rioux, who had coached the Lions for five seasons, told the girls on his team last week.
Rioux has been living in Winslow and commuting back and forth to Belfast, where he teaches social studies, Kenniston said. The fact there were a few varsity openings in central Maine – Winslow is also looking for a girls basketball coach – made it likely Rioux would pursue one of them, Kenniston added.
Rioux got married last summer, and he and his wife is expecting a baby, Kenniston said, which makes commuting all the more tough.
“I don’t think this came as a big surprise,” Kenniston said. “It was just a matter of when.”
Kenniston was unsure if Rioux had reached an agreement on a teaching position with Waterville. Rioux could not be reached for comment.
Belfast finished this season with an 11-9 record, including a 46-31 loss in the Eastern Maine Class B quarterfinals to eventual state champion Presque Isle.
“Certainly we hate to see him go because he’s done a nice job with the kids,” Kenniston said.
Rioux will take over for Julie Bradstreet, who also coached the Panthers for five years.
Bradstreet, a Mars Hill native, 1988 Miss Maine Basketball and former University of Maine star, oversaw Waterville’s move from Class A to Class B this year. It was a successful season as Waterville went 16-5 and made it to the EM semifinals.
The Panthers had just three seniors on the roster this year. Kenniston said the middle school players coming up look promising, too.
“If you look at it from a talent perspective, Waterville’s got quite a bit of talent,” he said. “They’ve got good kids there now and good kids coming in.”
Sinford returns to baseball post
Bob Sinford is a busy man, but he didn’t hesitate to add one more job to his list of duties this spring.
The athletic director for grades 3-12 in Machias, the full-time elementary school physical education teacher, and varsity boys soccer coach has taken over the baseball team this spring.
The boys on the team, many of whom Sinford coaches in soccer and has known for years as they’ve advanced through the grades, wanted Sinford to take the position after six-year coach Dick Smith retired.
“The kids were rather excited,” Sinford said. “They had actually started talking about me coaching in December. A lot of them I’ve known from kindergarten all the way through.”
Sinford is actually returning to the position he coached for six years, a stint which ended in 1992. A longtime baseball fan, he played until he was 22 with the Machias Bruins and Jonesport Jets in a Washington County league.
“I’ve always loved baseball. It’s fun,” he said. “I’m a die-hard baseball fan. So I understand the game fairly well, hopefully.”
Sinford said there were no applicants for the job initially, so he took the post himself. Although he’s given himself more work, it may turn out to be a smart move.
There’s been a changeover in maintenance staff at the school, so Sinford has been showing the new crew the ropes.
“With baseball and softball, there are a lot of different things that need to be done,” he said. “When I’m teaching full-time and AD at two different schools, I don’t often have the time to do those things.”
Sinford coached the Bulldogs to Class D state soccer titles in 1990 and 2003.
Jessica Bloch can be reached at 990-8193, 1-800-310-8600 or firstname.lastname@example.org.