Skip To Main Content

Tabor Academy Celebrates Athletic Excellence 2022

Tabor Academy Celebrates Athletic Excellence 2022

On Saturday, October 15, 2022, Seawolves past and present filled the Stone Gym to recognize the newest Tabor Academy Athletic Hall of Fame inductees. The 2020 and 2022 honorees consist of five individual athletes, three coaches, and two teams, all of whom will join the 45 current Athletic Hall of Fame members.

While the Athletic Hall of Fame is made up of individuals and teams spanning years from as early as 1937 to as recently as 2004, they all share a few things in common: the attributes of sportsmanship, teamwork, leadership, and achievement.

The event was an incredible opportunity to have current student-athletes present to share in Tabor’s rich athletic history. Emotions ran high as memories were shared, and through laughter and tears, there was a tangible sense of pride for teammates, coaches, and the School by the Sea.

“I am reminded that today’s ceremony is an opportunity to honor the past, celebrate the present, and inspire the future,” observed Head of School Tony Jaccaci at Saturday’s ceremony. “I cannot help but be impressed by the depth and breadth of the athletic excellence here at Tabor Academy.”

Those in attendance also heard poignant remarks from students and alumni presenting awards, as well as Kelly Walker, the Director of Athletics and Co-Curriculars at Tabor. In her speech, Walker expressed the significance of being the first female in her role.

“In the lens of Diversity, Equity, and Belonging, Title IX transformed the athletic world we know today by creating policy for access and equality in sports,” said Walker, in celebration of the fiftieth year-anniversary of Title IX. “Looking out and seeing faces like Loren Milhench le Gassick ’85 and Joan Roller, who were pioneers for woman in sports at Tabor, and seeing so many of Tabor’s current female student-athletes and coaches, it’s amazing to recognize how far we have come.”

Tabor Academy congratulates the following inductees on behalf of their historic achievement, and for contributing to the lasting legacy of Tabor’s athletic program. You can find their full bios online.

Coaches:

Coach Roderick Beebe: In 1931, Coach Beebe began Tabor’s proud tradition of taking the boys’ crew to the prestigious Henley Royal Regatta at Henley-on-Thames in England. This endeavor produced victories in the Thames Challenge Cup in 1936, 1937, and 1939, ushering in the “golden age” of Tabor rowing. This impressive series of wins is even more significant since the Thames Challenge Cup was a college race only open to international high schools at that time. Tabor’s record-setting success at Henley brought the school international recognition and made Mr. Beebe a legendary figure among fellow boatmen.


Coach Bruce Cobbold: In 1969, Coach Cobbold founded Tabor’s first cross country team to augment the winter track program. Then in 1982, with the start of girls’ sports at Tabor, he began coaching Tabor’s budding girls’ crew program. His 1988 Girls’ Varsity Crew won their division at the Head of the Charles and the New England Championship. This team and Coach Cobbold were inducted into the inaugural Athletic Hall of Fame, Class of 2016.


Coach Joan Roller: In 1979, with the return of girls to Tabor, Joan Roller immediately became a champion for the girls’ athletic programs. Coach Roller was one of the first female head coaches of a Tabor girls’ varsity program, she served as a pioneer for the female coaches who would follow her. Throughout those early years, Coach Roller promoted increased recognition of the girls’ programs, argued successfully for equal practice time and use of facilities among the boys’ and girls’ teams, advocated for more qualified and experienced referees during games, and championed the addition of a female presence in the training room.

Teams:

1947 Henley Crew: Will forever serve as an enduring example of how honor, empathy, and fair play in competition can transcend victory to lift the human spirit. With the resumption of the Henley Royal Regatta in the aftermath of World War II, Tabor’s crew team traveled to Henley-on-Thames to compete for the Thames Challenge Cup. They lived exclusively on British rations during the regatta and their acts of sportsmanship, fair play, and global citizenship remains an inspiration to all.


2002 Girls’ Varsity Basketball team: Was a solid team with depth, talent, and good chemistry. The championship season for this team, was the beginning of Tabor’s dominance at the highest level and laid the foundation for what the Girls’ Varsity Basketball program has become.

Individual Athletes:

Spencer Gray ’57: Was an exceptional varsity competitor who went on to went on to be one of the finest, and top ranked, tennis players in New England.

Jim Henry ’75: Was a true student- athlete through his commitment to sportsmanship, leadership, and academic excellence. Nominated by Tabor, Jim was a four-year recipient of the Morehead-Cain Scholarship at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, this scholarship is nation’s first merit-based scholarship program and is one of the most selective educational opportunities in the country.

Jean Roy ’80: Whose athletic prowess on the ice was unmatched and contributions to men’s ice hockey helped redefine the role of defenseman in American collegiate hockey.

Loren Milhench le Gassick ’85: Was a pioneer in female athletics during the reintroduction of coeducation. Loren’s golf career is where she distinguished herself in Tabor’s athletic program. She competed exclusively against boys and her match-play record among the best on the team.

Leon Hayward ’98: Is a trailblazer for black hockey players at Tabor, leading the way as the first African American to play varsity boys’ hockey. Leon went on to play Division I hockey as a forward for the Northeastern University Huskies. He then spent six years playing professionally, including five in the American Hockey League. Leon is currently one of two black assistant coaches in college hockey and a member of the NHL Coaches Association BIPOC Coaching program dedicated to developing future NHL coaches and general managers.