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Faucher, Norm (2003)

Faucher, Norm (03)

No history of Biddeford baseball could be written without a chapter devoted to Norman R. Faucher.

A 1951 graduate of the former St. Louis High School in Biddeford, Faucher made an impact in Telegram League baseball while a schoolboy. He played shortstop and third base for Biddeford, and according to local historian Thomas R.Girard, batted 467 his senior year.

Girard reports that Faucher had nine triples his senior year, a record that he says still stands in the Telegram League. Girard recalls Faucher being named to the All-Telegram League in 1951 as a utility player. Faucher went on to play four years of varsity baseball at St. Michael’s College in Vermont, according to Girard, Faucher played third base and shortstop again. during summers 1952 through 1995. Faucher has fond memories of playing in the Portland Twilight League. “I played for Benoit’s Contractors” Faucher recalls, “My manager was Pete Pompeo, and I had some great teammates like Willie Greenlaw, Frank Nappi, Neil Serpico and Dick Dutremble (all Maine Hall of Famers).

Girard recalls Faucher being named, after college, to the “Goodall Sanford All Stars of Sanford, Maine.” That team was managed by Freddie Parent who played for the Boston Red Sox around 1920, Chicago White Sox 1899-1911 and was a Maine Hall of Fame original. Girard also says local legend has it that Faucher played for a Biddeford area alumni association team that faced off against a Kennebunkport summer squad that included a left-handed first baseman who had played at Yale by the name of George Bush.

“In addition to his outstanding baseball ability,’ Girard wrote in nominating Faucher for the Maine Baseball Hall of Fame, “Norman is also an individual respected for his high character and community involvement. He served as president of his senior class at St. Louis, was parish council president at St. Louis, and was in the Biddeford Rotary Club for 30 years.” Girard reports that Faucher is a past president of the Rotary, also Faucher is admired for the manner in which he handled the difficult decision of closing St. Louis High School in 1970.

Faucher had to hang up his spikes in 1956 upon entering military service.“I continue to love the game, and follow it daily.” Faucher says.He would have liked to continue playing but he has no regrets about giving up the game to serve his country.

Norman is married to Doris, they have four children; Marc, Diane, Susan and Bill.

From Portland Press Herald .

"BIDDEFORD – During the Telegram League baseball season of 1951, more than a third of Norm Faucher’s hits were triples. The St. Louis High of Biddeford standout led the league with nine.

Steve Broy of Gorham had six triples in 2010. That’s the closest to Faucher’s mark over that span.

At the start of the 1930s, Portland High had a couple of speedsters in Yudy Elowitch and Keith Jordan.

Like Faucher, they could speed around the bases. According to former coach Mike Rutherford, by way of statistician Peter Gribbin, Jordan had seven triples in 1930, only to be matched by Elowitch the next season. Simon Williams of Portland, a player Rutherford coached, had six triples in 2000. Portland, thanks to Gribbin, a former history teacher at the school, arguably keeps better records for its sports teams than any school in the state.

“Nine triples,” said Rutherford of Faucher’s achievement. “I can’t remember anyone getting that many, and I’ve been involved with the league since 1987.”

It obviously takes speed to hit a triple, but equally as important is a well-placed ball, most desirably splitting the outfielders or hitting it over their heads.

“I led off for most of my time playing for St. Louis,” said Faucher. “I got four or five cracks at the plate. I hit them all over. Some were over the fielders’ heads, some split the outfield. I let players like Dick Dutremble do the heavy hitting. We had some good coaches and players in that time. In the four years, I know we had winning teams,” he said.

Faucher, who alternated between shortstop and third base, was selected to the 1951 All-Telegram League baseball team as a utility player.

He also led the league in total bases with 49 and his .367 average was the third highest on the all-team.

“I’m not surprised Norm’s nine triples is still the best,” said teammate Phil Xaphes, who lives in Scarborough.

“Norm was a very reliable player who could really run. He could hit the ball accurately between the fielders,” said Xaphes, the team’s top pitcher that season.

The Eagles finished fifth in the Telegram League that season. Faucher was the only Eagle to make the all-league team. St. Louis High closed after the 1969-70 school year."

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