Ledyard's Vincent takes the reins once again

Pete Vincent was the boys' basketball coach at Ledyard High School when Adam Baber was a player on his roster.

Vincent, as Ledyard's athletic director, then hired Baber to coach the Colonels girls' basketball team.

Now, Vincent is replacing Baber, who was 49-9 over the past two seasons as girls' coach, won a pair of Eastern Connecticut Conference titles and reached the Class L state semifinals in 2014 before losing to eventual champion Capital Prep. Ledyard was 22-4 last season and sent center Hannah Hutchins to Division I Utah State.

"Big shoes to fill," Vincent said with a chuckle. "But that's OK. I feel like (Baber) was one of mine. I felt like a proud papa watching him coach. Absolutely, I enjoyed watching them play the last couple years. I thought Adam did a great job with them."

Vincent was the head boys' basketball coach at Ledyard for 19 years and for two years at Killingly prior to that. He stopped coaching following the 2006 season to watch his sons Chris and Chad compete. He totaled 260 victories at Ledyard and qualified for the state tournament 18 times.

A physical education teacher at Ledyard and also the former Colonels baseball coach, Vincent has recently coached the freshman baseball, basketball and football teams at the school.

Ledyard athletic director Jim Bounocore called Vincent a "great teacher" and said the girls' basketball team, which returns only one starter in Michelle Klinikowski, will thrive under him. Vincent, while never having coached girls before, said he's had nearly every single player in class and is looking forward to coaching the team.

"He is an outstanding teacher of fundamentals, he has a great rapport with our student-athletes and is absolutely the right fit for our girls' program at this time," Buonocore said in a press release. "Coach Vincent has the experience, basketball knowledge and coaching ability to build upon the success our team has attained the last two seasons."

Vincent said he has enjoyed his teaching role in the freshman sports the last few years.

"The first day I would tell them they're gonna learn the game of basketball because they don't know it yet. And they kind of laugh," Vincent said. "But I tell them they're going to learn to play the game the right way."

Baber resigned last month to accept a teaching position at Fishers Island School.

v.fulkerson@theday.com twitter@vickieattheday


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