Little Hawk History
Posted Aug 1, 2012
  • The Green Hornets was the original name of South Berwick's first under 15 football team.  Around 1953, a group of boys got together and formed a pick-up team to play against a team from Rollinsford.  A spectator was asked to referee the game - Bud Williams - thus the beginning of South Berwick Football.


    In 1954, Bud rounded up all those dedicated football enthusiasts and formed South Berwick's first official football roster.  Evelyn Williams formed a cheerleading squad.


    The first team was made up of around 25 kids from Central and St. Michael's schools organized by Bud and sponsored by the Recreation Association, Rotary, American Legion and others.  The team uniform was green and gold.


    Bud Continued to coach the team until 1962 when he had taken ill.  Gordon Hillard and Rodney Brown filled in for the rest of the year and the following year the team disbanded.


    In 1971, Bud Williams once again returned to reorganize South Berwick's football team with his son, Dick Williams, in a coaching position.  At this time the Green Hornets joined the Dover League and changed their colors to red and white and their name to the South Berwick and Rollinsford Braves.  The Braves continued in this league until 1975 when they decided to play independently and follow the "Big Hawks" cleat steps by changing their colors to purple and white - becoming the Little Hawks.  The Little Hawks started out with one loss for the season and constructed their concession stand under the direction of Stikey Gray.


    Dick Williams continued coaching until 1982 with the assistance of Dennis Wormel, Larry Kilbourn, Jim Batchelder, Bob McPherson and others.  Larry Kilbourn coached through 1983 with Mike Schoff and played an important role in the formation of the Pee Wee Team.  The younger division played under the supervision of Glenn Schoff and John Leach.


    Jim Schoff joined the Pee Wee coaching staff in 1984.  Nancy Fontaine started the Little Hawks Cheerleaders in 1984.  At that time there were only two squads involving 22 girls.  In 1985, the Pee Wee cheering squad was added with an 8 member team.  1983 also saw the dedication of the Bud Williams Award.  This is an annual award given to the player who the coaches feel best reflects the attitude, desire and spirit of the game, while maintaining his grades. The player may not be the best athlete but he has a love for football and shows a lot of heart for both his team and the game.


    In 1984, Mike Schoff and Bob McPherson served as Co-Head Coaches.  Mike Schoff took over in 1985 and stayed until 1990.  Bob McPherson resumed Head Coach duties in 1991.


    In 1985, the Pee Wee Team joined the Portsmouth Soda Pop League and remained in that league until 1990.  In 1991, the Pee Wees joined the Seacoast Junior Football League.  They had a very successful year going undefeated 8-0 to win the championship.  In 1992, four Portsmouth teams joined the league.


    Nancy Fontaine continued coaching all three squads until 1991 when Frankie John took over as head coach and Nancy continued in the role as advisor/coordinator/coach.  In 1992, the cheering squads were expanded to include anyone wishing to participate.  That first year 66 girls were involved and Nancy returned as head coach.


    In 1991, the Little Hawks joined the Southern Maine Youth Football League in its first season.  The league was comprised of Little Hawks, Arundel, Nobel, Bonny Eagle, Kennebunk, Kittery, York, Wells and Somersworth.  That year the Little Hawks went 7-1 to win the championship.


    1993 saw a great increase in participation in the Little Hawks Organization.  We had more parent participation, both the Pee Wee and Little Hawk football teams grew and that fall we saw 83 girls in the three cheerleading squads. 


    The 1994 season saw a decrease in total players but not in heart.  The Pee Wees missed the play-offs for the first time in several years, while the Little Hawks (Varsity and JV) went undefeated in regular season and Championship Play-offs going 9-0 for the year.


    1994 was also the year in which the field behind Central School, was renamed and dedicated to Bud Williams.


    The 1999 season saw the Little Hawks take over the Rod Wotten Field at the new Junior High School and a major overhaul to the concession stand.  The new facilities were required due to the overwhelming turnout fo the Pee Wee teams.  The Little Hawks had to split the Pee Wees into two teams for the first time in their history.  Scott Bebb took over as head coach for the Little Hawks Varsity/JV teams.


    In 2000, Dennis Wormel took over as head coach for the Varsity/JV teams and Rheinhold Holton stepped up to take over for the Pee Wee coach.  Claudette Tetu volunteered to head up the cheerleading squads.


    The 2001 season saw a record number of boys and girls participating in the program.  Coaches Wormel and Holton continued to lead the football teams and Claudette Tetu coached the cheerleaders for another season.


    2002 saw over 200 participants in both the football and cheerleading programs.  Coaches Wormel and Holton lead their teams to productive seasons while Deanna St. Pierre assumed the head of the cheerleading program.


    In 2003, the program's cheerleading numbers stayed strong but saw a decline in the Pee Wee player numbers.  For the first time since the 1998 season, the Pee Wees fielded a single team wearing the purple.  Coach Rheinhold Holton stepped down leaving the way for Albert Gagnon and Derek Ham to assume the co-head coach position for the Pee Wee Program. 


    In 2005 Coach Dennis Wormel stepped down after 6 years as the head Varsity/JV Coach for the Little Hawks.  It was a very emotional farewell as Dennis has been involved with the Little Hawks for many, many years.


    The 2006 season began with some uncertainty as to who would take over as the Head Varsity/JV Coach. Dennis Wormel offered to come back for one more year and the Little Hawks gladly accepted his offer. Assisting Dennis was Coach Ralph Hyson and Coach John Pappas. The Pee Wee White and Purple Teams had a lot of new coaches join the staff including, Coaches Howarth, Gagnon, Parmley, Dalecki, McPherson, Gagner, Hughs and Janes. All coaches were very dedicated to the 98 players that year.


    The largest growth in 2006 was in our Flag Football program. A new entity to the Marshwood Little Hawks, we continued to offer this program to grades Kindergarten through 3rd grade through the 2010 season. We had a record number of 93 flag players in 2009. This group was coached by several volunteer parents as well as organized by Coach John Caverly, the High School Vice Principal.


    2006 turned out to be a record breaking year with over 240 kids involved in the program. Pam Keefer our President and the new board work hard in their recruiting efforts and the time given to the program.


    2007 was a very successful year for the Marshwood Little Hawks with over 250 kids including one of our largest cheering squads of over 50 girls.


    Tom Howarth took over as the head Varsity and JV Coach, Todd Hughes took over as the head Pee Wee Coach. In 2007 Jim Woodman became the president and continued through 2009. John Caverly, now Principal at the Marshwood Middle School was a great addition to the league. He has signed on as a coach for both the flag program and the pee wee players.


    In 2009 Tom Howarth continued as the head coach of the Varsity program and was also the new Freshmen coach at the High School. Mark Etro took over as head coach of the JV program and Kris Glidden of the Pee Wee. Michelle Gosselin was the head coach for the Cheering squad. Smaller than in previous years but hoping to build back it’s numbers. Shaun Casey took over as President of the organization in 2010.


    The 2010 Season proved to be very successful with the Varsity team ending their season 8-0, winning both play-offs and the championship undefeated. The Marshwood Little Hawks were the 2010 SMYFL Champions, bringing the Gold Ball home to Marshwood.


    The cheering program has suffered in numbers, dropping to less than 25 cutting the program in half. The lack of experienced coaches to take over the program and follow Michelle is one of our biggest challenges going forward.


    In the fall, at the end of the 2010 season Coach Tom Howarth, Coach Chris Dalecki and long standing board member Susan Casey were honored with special awards for the their time and dedication to Marshwood Little Hawks for many years.


    The 2011 Little Hawks football teams had a very successful season, the pee wees growing to over 70 kids forming both a White and Purple A&B squads. Our newly established Mini Hawks participated in the Maine Jamboree in Portland as well as games against other newly established teams. Our Varsity team completed their second undefeated season ending their run in the semi finals. Our JV team has some big shoes to fill but are up for the challenge! Luckily Michelle agreed to stay on as cheering coach for one more year which helped keep the program alive.


    Due to the growth of the tackle program, we offered the Eliot Recreation Department the opportunity to take over the Flag program. With any volunteer organization the lack of willing volunteer coaches affects the outlook of the program. The ECSD did a great job in the fall to continue the program in Marshwood Little Hawks style! Our challenge is to keep the cheering program viable for the 2012 season. Decreased numbers and lack of experienced coaches are going to be the challenges facing us this spring.


    For the 2018 Season Dan Boyle took over as President.  Dan was previsouly the VP and before that he and his wife Angela ran concessions.  Shaun Casey is staying on the board as the Pee Wee Head Coach. 

    As always, Marshwood Little Hawks has proved to be a feeder program for the High School as well as past players returning as coaches in the years after their graduation.