Editorial: Gorhams enjoy another day in the sun

Posted 5/13/21

In case you missed it from last weekend, Sandy Gorham, the former EPHS head coach and Hall of Famer, long after his last one had another day in the sun as he led the Barrington High School football …

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Editorial: Gorhams enjoy another day in the sun

Posted

In case you missed it from last weekend, Sandy Gorham, the former EPHS head coach and Hall of Famer, long after his last one had another day in the sun as he led the Barrington High School football team to the Division II Super Bowl title with a 34-6 win over St. Raphael Sunday night, May 9, at Cranston Stadium.

The title was the sixth for Gorham, his first since taking over the Eagles’ program a few years ago and 16 years since he last led the Townies to the mountain top. Gorham won five Division I Super Bowls while at East Providence, the last of which came with a 35-13 victory over Hendricken to conclude the 2006 season, coaching several superb teams and players.

From there, the EPHS football program, once the envy of public schools across the state, began a gradual decline. The Townies remained competitive for much of the rest of Gorham’s tenure on the sidelines, regularly making the playoffs, but did not again ascend to the loftiest of heights. The program reached its nadir under Gorham in what proved his final season in 2013, when the Townies finished with just a 2-6 record.

The thing is, Gorham didn’t all of a sudden forget how to coach, nor had he really lost his passion for the game. Nope, the nature of the sport and the kids who play it in East Providence are what began to change around a decade ago, and it’s continued to evolve ever since he left.

His immediate successor, Jay Monteiro, was a fine coach, knew the game inside and out, learned some of it as a member of Gorham’s staffs in the late 90s/early 2000s. But the EPHS football fortunes didn’t change.

Jon Stringfellow, of the legendary city gridiron clan, took over the reigns in time for this COVID-19 truncated season and struggled. It remains to be seen if he can lead the Townies back to glory, if the new high school will somehow help revive the program.

For Sandy Gorham, though, those are no longer his concerns. He’s basking in the glow of another title, and doing so as he coached his youngest son, Luke, now a BHS senior who was just a toddler scurrying around the Townie sidelines the last time his dad tasted as much success.

Gorham told our East Bay Media Group colleague Josh Bickford that Luke walked up to him, picked him up and hugged him after the Super Bowl game. We’re sure that was quite a moment.

Congrats to the Gorhams. And here’s hoping the Townies will someday soon also enjoy another day in the football sun.

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Mike Rego

Mike Rego has worked at East Bay Newspapers since 2001, helping the company launch The Westport Shorelines. He soon after became a Sports Editor, spending the next 10-plus years in that role before taking over as editor of The East Providence Post in February of 2012. To contact Mike about The Post or to submit information, suggest story ideas or photo opportunities, etc. in East Providence, email mrego@eastbaymediagroup.com.