GORHAM, Maine – In recognition of his more than three-decades long service to the University of Southern Maine and his exceptionally successfully coaching career at the charge of the Huskies’ baseball team, veteran head coach Ed Flaherty, now in his 32nd season at USM, will receive the one honor that he has not yet collected in his outstanding career, when the University of Southern Maine and the Department of Athletics renames the baseball field in his honor on April 30 prior to the Huskies’ game against Western New England College.
“Ed has had a storied career and is widely recognized as one of the finest baseball coaches in the country at any level,” noted long-time USM Director of Athletics Al Bean. “The naming of the field, Flaherty Field, will honor his outstanding career at USM, and in the sport of baseball, and is certainly well-deserved. Ed has not only had a tremendous impact on the success of our baseball program, but he has also positively affected the lives of hundreds of our student-athletes.”
In his 31 years at the helm of the Huskies’ baseball team, Coach Flaherty has collected 941 wins and is quickly on his way to achieving the 1000-win plateau. Long considered one of the top teams in NCAA Division III, Flaherty’s teams have been nationally-ranked nearly every season, and have won numerous Little East Conference and New England Regional Championships. Competing in the NCAA Division III World Series eight times, Coach Flaherty and the Huskies have twice achieved the pinnacle of success capturing the NCAA Division III National Championship in 1991 and 1997.
Along with recognizing Flaherty for his coaching legacy, USM Athletics will also celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the 1997 National Championship team. On the evening before the field dedication ceremony, USM will commemorate the 1997 team’s championship anniversary with an invitation only event at Spire 29 in Gorham. On April 30, the 1997 team will be honored on the field prior to the Western New England game (1:00 p.m.).
In his 30 years as head coach, Flaherty has compiled an impressive 941-423-4 record (.689 W-L percentage), including 15 seasons with 30 or more wins. Twenty-three times during his collegiate coaching career, Flaherty has guided the Huskies into a postseason tournament, including 15 consecutive appearances in the NCAA Division III Tournament (1987-2001). His career winning percentage at the start of the 2017 season ranks him 15th among active NCAA Division III coaches with five or more years of service, and his 941 wins ranks fifth. All-time, Flaherty ranks 25th in winning percentage and 12th in wins.
Flaherty has been honored extensively and has been inducted into five Hall of Fame bodies: the National Association of Baseball Coaches (NABC), the Maine Sports Hall of Fame, The Maine Baseball Hall of Fame, the University of Maine Hall of Fame and the Little East Conference Hall of Fame. He was named 1991 and 1997 NCAA Division III National Coach of the Year by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), and was voted New England Coach of the Year in 1989, 1990, and 1991. In addition, he has been named Diamond District One Baseball Coach of the Year on eight occasions (1989, 1991, 1992, 1997, 2001, 2009, 2013, 2015). His peers have voted Flaherty the Little East Conference Coach of the Year eight times (1997, 1999, 2001, 2006, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2015) since 1997.