The newly refurbished court in the Kirk Hall Gymnasium at Central Maine Community College now bears the name and signature of Dave Gonyea, who has been the men’s basketball coach since 1993.
“I specifically wanted to get this done before I retired,” noted CMCC President Scott Knapp. “Somebody else could have done it, but Dave and I have been very close for 23 years. He was literally the first person I met when I came here. He really made the athletic program here . . . He is the reason why the school is where it is.”
Gonyea, who also serves as director of athletics, housing and security, was characteristically humble as he accepted the honor. “This is not a job for me; this is a lifestyle. I love the people I work with. I love the kids that go to school here . . . I love the community. It is not work to me. I enjoy every bit of it.”
Former players, coaches, and rivals participated in the dedication held at the gym on August 13. A small group of friends and co-workers, masked and socially distanced, were in attendance at the gym while many others joined remotely.
“I think Dave’s impact obviously goes far beyond the basketball court,” noted women’s head basketball coach and director of admissions Andrew Morong. “I think if you ask alumni, he has impacted their lives in ways that maybe they didn’t realize at the time when they were players, but now have learned to appreciate it.”
Under Gonyea’s leadership as men’s basketball coach, the Mustangs have won nine league championships, three New England championships, participated in 12 NSCAA/USCAA national championship tournaments, and won the prestigious USCAA national championship in 2002. In 2012, he led the Mustangs to a Yankee Conference record of 18-0, a Yankee Conference championship, and a trip to the USCAA National Tournament. He holds a career record of 514-234 over 26 seasons, and has won numerous coach of the year honors.
“This is very cool and I so appreciate it,” Gonyea said. “What I like best though is what it represents . . . all those people who contributed to the program and all those kids who were here. They were a part of it as well.”
Photo: CMCC President Scott Knapp looks on as long-time basketball coach Dave Gonyea removes the covering of his name and signature that are now inscribed on the newly-refurbished basketball court in the Kirk Hall Gymnasium.