Isle of Wight Academy honors longtime coach

Published 6:58 pm Wednesday, January 6, 2010

ISLE OF WIGHT—Benjamin Vaughan, who has been associated with Isle of Wight Academy for the last 40 years, was honored Saturday for his 500th basketball coaching victory at halftime of the IWA-Franklin boys basketball game.

Vaughan won his 500th game late last February over Portsmouth Christian in the Metro Conference Tournament.

Saturday night, over 25 former players gave Vaughan a signed basketball in honor of his 500th win and his association with the school. It was noted at the ceremony that Vaughan, who has been at the school since 1970, has gone from physical education teacher to headmaster at the school.

He has coached the boys’ basketball team for 34 years and has also had stints with the girls’ JV and varsity teams.

“I was pleased to see so many former players come back, especially the ones who played so many years ago,” Vaughan said. “There were a number that played in the 70s and a number that won the first game here. “

Vaughan said he took a one-year break from coaching right after he became headmaster, and another five-year break from coaching the varsity boys. He has been the varsity boys coach again for the last six years.

As for retirement, Vaughan has not yet made a decision.

“I just go year to year. I don’t know. I have a 10-year-old son coming along and I don’t plan to coach him,” Vaughan said with a chuckle.

“I plan to sit in the bleachers and watch him if he so desires to play.”

Vaughan said he continues to coach because of the love of the game.

“I love the competition and being around young people. I have had had some great ones to work with around here,” he said.

Isle of Wight Academy dedicated the gym at the school to Vaughan in 2006.