GARDINER – Gardiner Area High School has a new football coach – again.
Athletic Director Jeff Turnbull said Friday that Matt Burgess, son of a former Gardiner football coach, has accepted the position.

“We are thrilled,” Turnbull said. “He will go a great job. He has a lot of football knowledge and he is a Gardiner guy.”

Burgess, 43, of Old Orchard Beach, graduated from Gardiner in 1987. He played under former Gardiner coaches John Wolfgram and Rob Munzing, winning a state championship in 1985.

“I’m looking forward to working with the players and the coaches,” said Burgess, whose father, John, coached at Gardiner from the late 1970s through the early 1990s. “It’s a wonderful opportunity.”

Burgess fills the void created after Rick Lovely resigned late last month, citing a health issue.

Lovely had been picked to replace Jim Palmer, who resigned in the spring to become the next athletic director at Oak Hill High School in Wales.

“I have a tremendous amount of respect for Rick,” said Burgess, who previously taught sports psychology at Bridgdon Academy. “The circumstances are a little tough, but it’s a great opportunity.”

Burgess said he will likely retain several assistants on the staff, including Mike Gammon and Charlie Lawrence.


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