Coach Chris Clark takes a final bow

© Peter Wallace Register Citizen 7/17/09

Veteran player/coach Chris Clark took a final bow with the Torrington Rebels at 5:45pm Sunday before the teams last regular season game, against the Tri-Town Trojans, honored retiring Clark for his leadership in taking the Rebels to seven league championships in a 14-year tenure, the latest of which came two years ago… “He was a great leader, a great teammate and an even better friend,” said teammate Darrin Gould, who organized Sunday’s tribute with Rebel Angelo Calabrese. “I just want someone else to have the fun I’ve had the last seven years,” said Clark when he ended his coaching stint two years ago. Seven years before that, he began having fun as a Tri-State player, breaking into the Rebels starting catcher slot after his American Legion eligibility ended, along with an All-BL high school career at Lewis Mills. He went off to a collegiate playing career at Division III Moravian (Bethlehem, Penn.), then spent summers with the Rebels. By 1995, three years after he joined the league, Clark was Tri-State MVP. Four years after that, he became the Rebels fiery/player coach. “We always did things together in decision making,” Clark said of his coaching style. “I learned a lot about the game in discussing (those decisions). The system and the camaradarie worked. On a personal level, nobody organizes a tribute to a departed player/coach unless the feelings are genuine. Clark played another season after giving up coaching the Rebels, then made only a few appearances this season. On a player level, the teams most recent league triumphs, all under Clark’s leadership, came in 2000; 2004; and 2007. Clark is and was one of the strong, passionate personalities that make the league exceptional in ways beyond exceptional talent. Sunday, his team and his fans thanked him one more time for his part of that
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