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Barbara Nott-Woolley
Class of 1979

Precious few three-sport athletes at New Milford High School have attained the standard of performance achieved by Barbara Nott-Woolley, a field hockey, basketball and softball standout during the late 1970s.


Barbara emerged from her junior varsity experience in all three sports to develop into one of the very best players in a Western Connecticut Conference replete with strong teams and excellent athletes. She earned all-WCC laurels across the board and helped make the Green Wave a title threat on each team she graced with her athletic ability, her sports smarts and her competitive fire.


Playing for legendary coach Fran Zaloski in field hockey, Barb blossomed as a junior, employing her deft stickwork to score clutch goals in respective 3-2 wins over Masuk and New Fairfield.


Combining her talents with fellow AHOF inductee Mary Schneider again as a senior, she propelled the Green Wave to a 50-11 goals for/against advantage. Barb exploded for three goals against both Weston and New Fairfield, scored twice to lift the Green Wave past Brookfield, 3-0, in the WCC semifinals and then was credited by coach Zaloski following a 1-0 championship match victory over Masuk as “being all over the place; she really kept us in there.”


Barb’s work wasn’t done in field hockey. She then played an instrumental midfield and defensive role as the Green Wave conquered Farmington, 2-1; Rippowam, 1-0; and two-time defending champ E.O. Smith, 1-0, to advance to the state title match vs. Cheshire.The Green Wave fell short, 1-0, in the championship game, yet Barbara and her teammates had set a high bar in reaching the state final that was to be matched by three more NMHS field hockey teams in the next five seasons.


For her career, Barb scored 23 goals and assisted 10 more as the Green Wave built a three-year record of 31-12-4 ledger.


The athletic skills Barbara had utilized in field hockey were just a sampling of what she brought to the basketball court during her four-season varsity career. Having learned the ropes as a freshman, Barb then became a consistent scorer, rebounder and defender during her sophomore campaign.


Once again alongside Mary Schneider, Barb frequently scored in double figures as a junior, including 16 points in a 56-47 comeback win over New Fairfield and back-to-back, 19-point games in mid-season. Come state tournament time, Barbara rose to the occasion with 22 points vs. Rippowam of Stamford, although she and her teammates were to be denied, 66-51.


As co-captain of a potent, title-hungry ’78-79 squad, Barbara helped lift the Green Wave to a 16-4 regular season. Among her personal highlights were 19 points and, according to coach Bob Latham, ”stalwart” defense during a 62-38 rout of Bethel, and 23 points in a satisfying 62-34 takedown of longtime nemesis Weston.


Her 14 points and all-around efforts were highlights of the Green Wave’s heartbreaking, 53-50 WCC semifinal playoff loss to Immaculate. Barbara’s hopes for state honors lived on through a first-round, 53-49 win over Watertown, as she contributed especially with her defensive prowess and rebounding. However, her 10 points were to go for naught in the second round as Barb’s Green Wave hardcourt career came to a close with a 63-42 defeat to talented St. Bernard’s of Uncasville.


For her NMHS basketball career, Barbara scored more than 500 points as the Green Wave carved out a cumulative 54-26 record, including a then-school record 17 wins in her senior season under first-year coach John Bachetti.


As outstanding as she was in field hockey and basketball, Barbara might have been at her best on the softball diamond. She wasted no time as a freshman establishing herself as a vital member of the Green Wave, hitting at a robust .410 clip while holding down the third baseman’s position on defense. In her very first game, Barb slapped three hits, featuring a rally-starting, seventh-inning single in a 15-14 win over Central Catholic of Norwalk.


Barb moved across the diamond to play first base as a sophomore, a position she was to hold for three seasons. The defensive switch did nothing to slow her offensive exploits, which included a home run and two singles during a 12-1 win over Joel Barlow. Barb and her teammates, including both Mary Schneider and Thea Murray, both also destined for the NMHS AHOF, played their way to 14-4 regular season record and a WCC co-championship.


The Green Wave fell shy of a successful league title defense in 1978, but Barbara continued her potent plate exploits, including a grand-slam homer and three singles in a 35-17 shellacking of Immaculate and a three-run homer and three more hits as the Green Wave crushed Central Catholic, 22-7.


Barb and her teammates returned to WCC title contention in her senior softball season, her 11th varsity campaign at NMHS. She slugged another grand-slam homer to key a 14-8 win over New Fairfield, stroked a homer and three singles in a 21-9 victory over Abbott Tech and added a homer, triple and two singles during a 13-2 win over Pomperaug as the Green Wave posted a 12-4 regular season.


Facing her final chance at state tournament laurels, Barb proceeded to collect a double and three walks in a 9-4 win over Bristol Central, slug a two-run homer during a 5-1 victory over St. Bernard’s, loft a key sacrifice fly to enable a 6-5 quarterfinal win over Masuk, and rip a homer and two singles and score three runs as the Green Wave finally met its match, 17-14, vs. Platt in the state semifinals.


To say Barbara peaked as a senior softball player might be an understatement. In addition to the steady defense and leadership she brought to her team, she batted an eye-opening .564 on 31 hits in 55 official plate appearances, not to mention drawing numerous bases on balls. To climax it all, Barbara ripped six home runs in her final seven games.


Her overall 51-24 softball record brought Barbara’s NMHS varsity record to 136-62, enough to merit five first-team, all-WCC accolades and well-deserved induction to the NMHS Athletic Hall of Fame.

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