1951 Boys Basketball Team
Class D Tech Tourney Champions
It can safely be written, that this special collection of young men put Acton Athletics on the map. Their success, like the shot fired by the Acton Minutemen at the North Bridge, would sound from this sleepy pastoral community, during that wonderful winter season of 1951, onward and forever be contenders in Eastern Massachusetts Athletics.
The movie Hoosiers could have used it's theme to exemplify this rough and ready hardwood heros. Posting a 23-5 record, Acton won the Wachusett League Championship and for the first time in Acton history. The team was invited by Mr. Henry McCarthy to particpate in the Eastern Massachusetts Class D Basketball Tournament, known throughout Massachusetts as the "Tech Tourney," at the old barn, Boston Garden. Playing their home games in a small, all-purpose-room that served as cafeteria/auditorium/gymnasium, with circles overlapping, sideline and endline space non-existent, this team of scrappers and sharpshooters won the hearts of the community. On blustery winter evenings, with little space for spectators, the loyal fans of Acton would line the parking lot, peering through windows aided by fog wiping fortunates who had standing space in this noisy band-box. With a population of 2,500, the town of Acton took to calling this band of basketball brigands, "Winton's Winners," in honor of our Hall of Fame Coach, John Winton, this evening. It is said that this outstanding team was responsible for endearing the Blanchard Family's generosity, supplemented by a town meeting vote to appropriate funds for the construction of Blanchard Auditorium. The thrill of success and pride for this team spilled over into a grateful town sending this group of winners to New York City via Sid Laffin to be a guest on the Bump Hadley Radio Show and witness General Douglas MacArthur's homecoming Ticker-tape Parade. We honor, the legacy that The 1951 Basketball Team left us. Their dedication, sportsmanship, skills, determination and teamwork set the benchmark for Acton and Acton Boxboro's standard of athletic excellence.