NEWBURYPORT — Five Newburyport High legends will be welcomed into the Newburyport Wall of Fame at tonight’s induction ceremony, which will be held at the Newburyport Elks Lodge starting at 6 p.m. The inductees include three athletic greats along with two pillars of the football program and the athletic department as a whole. Here is a look at each inductee and the accomplishments that earned them enshrinement into the Newburyport Wall of Fame.
The winningest coach in Newburyport football history, Ed Gaudiano led the Clippers for 29 years from 1988 to 2015 and helped return the storied program to prominence. During his tenure, Gaudiano’s teams won nine Cape Ann League championships, appeared in four Super Bowls and won two Super Bowl championships in 1995 and 1997. A five-time CAL Coach of the Year, Gaudiano’s teams dominated the 1990s and consistently ranked among the best in the league throughout his tenure. Gaudiano finished with a career record of 175-125, and he also founded the Newburyport High boys lacrosse program, going 124-82 with two CAL titles in 12 seasons as coach between 2004 and 2016. Gaudiano was inducted into the Mass High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2018.
Whether as a coach, teacher or administrator, Robert Clarke was a key figure in the Newburyport High community for nearly three decades. Clarke was a longtime assistant football coach and defensive coordinator under Ed Gaudiano, serving from 1988 to 2013 while helping create the famed “Seawall Defense” of the 1990s. The Clippers won nine CAL titles, reached four Super Bowls and won two Super Bowl championships in 1995 and 1997 while Clarke was on staff. He also served as the school’s special needs coordinator from 1988 to 2013, and from 2013 to 2015 he took over as the school’s athletic director and as a key organizer on the new stadium project. Clarke is also a longtime assistant coach for Tufts University baseball, and prior to his coaching career was a standout football and baseball player at Curry College.
A member of the Class of 1977, Greg Twombly was one of the most accomplished football players in Newburyport High history. Twombly remains the school’s all-time leading rusher with 1,941 career rushing yards and scored 25 touchdowns for 150 points in his career. He was a key factor in the Clippers’ Super Bowl championships in 1975 and 1976, and as a senior he rushed for 1,096 yards and 17 touchdowns (102 points) to earn All-CAL honors, as well as All-North Shore Player of the Year, Boston Herald Star of the Week, the NHS Boosters Club Coaches Award and selection to the Harry Agganis All-Star game. He was also a standout hockey and track athlete and went on to play football at Northeastern University while receiving Newburyport High’s Wheelwright Scientific Scholarship.
Sarah Kent Testo
A member of the Class of 1996, Sarah Kent Testo was a standout in soccer, basketball, tennis and track and field during her high school career. As one of the first members of coach Robb Gonnam’s soccer dynasty, Testo was a prolific scorer who scored 20 goals with nine assists as a senior, including a school-record five goals in one game. She was also a talented shooting guard who averaged 18 points per game and earned All-CAL honors and Team MVP as a senior in 1996 after also earning CAL All-Star honors as a sophomore and junior. In the spring she cleared 5-3 in the high jump to place third in the state as a freshman before switching to tennis, where she played No. 1 singles for three years, was a two-year captain and a Team MVP as a senior. Testo later played four years of soccer at Keene State, recording 12 career goals and 20 assists while leading her team to the Little East Conference championship and the NCAA Tournament in 1998 before later making the NEWISCA Senior All-Star Bowl. She is now in her 18th year as head strength and conditioning coach at Keene State and her 17th season as an assistant women’s soccer coach.
A member of the Class of 1999, Jeff Stone helped lead Newburyport High to two CAL titles and a pair of Super Bowl appearances, including a Super Bowl title as a junior in 1997. As a senior in 1998 he was named CAL Player of the Year and a Boston Herald All-Scholastic, and at the time of his graduation he held the school record for longest touchdown reception in school history, an 83-yard bomb from quarterback Ryan McCarthy. Stone was also a three-time All-CAL selection in hockey, helping lead the Clippers to two CAL titles and two Division 2 North titles. Following his graduation he helped lead Colgate University football to a pair of Patriots League titles (1999, 2002) and later returned as a Newburyport High hockey assistant from 2005 to 2016.