WINCHENDON Mass. -- When John Toffey arrived at the Winchendon School campus in 2019, he knew his work was cut out for him in his attempts to revive a fledgling baseball program. Toffey, as a coach, enjoyed marvelous success during his prior stops at Salisbury School and Cheshire Academy. One of the first things Toffey noticed at Winchendon was the condition of the baseball field, which looked like something out of the movie, "The Sandlot." “Five years ago we had a field on campus, but you probably could not play a varsity game on that field,’’ said Toffey, who was recently named Assistant Head of School to go along with Director of Admissions. "You could possibly play a JV game on it. The dimensions of the field were questionable at best. It was a grass infield, and the backstop wasn’t high enough. At best, it was a decent practice field.’’ Because the field was not conducive for varsity-level games, Winchendon played its home games at nearby Franklin Pierce University (Rindge, N.H.) or at the New England Sports Complex (Northborough, Mass.). Although both fields were ideal for his club, the school had to budget for travel costs, meals, etc. In addition, the students living on the Winchendon School grounds could not attend these games due to a lack of transportation.
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