University of Maine basketball coach Amy Vachon and two of the most prolific scorers in Maine boys’ basketball history – Andy Bedard and T.J. Caouette – are among this year’s class of 17 inductees to the Maine Basketball Hall of Fame.

The hall announced a list that includes sisters Lynn and Sharon Bay of Portland High, Elizabeth “Biz” Houghton of Cape Elizabeth, Ken Lynch and Chris Sawyer of South Portland, and Richard “Dickie” Whitmore Jr. of Waterville. They’ll be joined by longtime high school coaches Arnold “Arnie” Clark, Heidi Deery, Tony DiBiase, Gerry Duffy, Phil Faulkner, Ed Feeney, David Halligan and Gavin Kane.

Seven others – Bryce Beattie, Ray Bicknell, Al Card, Peter Gribbin, Jim Poulin, Steve Shaw and Mike Thurston – were chosen in the Legends category, and the 1987 Morse High boys’ basketball team will also be honored.

Vachon, Bedard and Caouette were all elected in their first year of eligibility – 20 years after their college careers ended.

Vachon has achieved success as both a player and coach at Maine. After a standout high school career at Cony, where she led the Rams two Class A state championships and was named Miss Maine Basketball in 1996, Vachon played on four straight NCAA tournament teams at Maine.

Vachon then went into coaching and won a girls’ Class A state championship at McAuley High in 2011 before returning to Maine as an assistant coach. When head coach Richard Barron became ill in 2017, Vachon served as interim head coach and eventually was given the full-time job. She led the Black Bears to back-to-back America East championships in 2018 and 2019 and was chosen as the league’s coach of the year both times.

Bedard and Caouette were rivals in the Mountain Valley Conference – Bedard at Mountain Valley High, Caouette at Winthrop High – before earning college scholarships to Big East programs.

Bedard, a 6-foot-1 guard, scored a championship-game record 53 points in the 1994 Class B state final, leading his team to an 84-71 win over Camden-Rockport. He left Mountain Valley after his junior year to play for one of the country’s top prep school programs – Maine Central Institute.

Bedard then went to Boston College and helped the Eagles win the Big East championship in 1997, playing mostly in a reserve role, but he transferred to Maine after his sophomore season. After sitting out a transfer year, he was the starting point guard for a team that won 19 games in 1998-99 and a school-record 24 games in 1999-2000.

Caouette, a 6-foot-7 forward, played four seasons at Villanova University after a high school career where he starred in both basketball and track and field. He helped Winthrop win a Class C basketball championship as a freshman in 1993 and was twice named the Maine Sunday Telegram’s male athlete of the year, in 1995 and 1996. He scored 57 points in a game against Telstar as a senior.


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