A long-time local educator and coach who wrote a book chronicling Presque Isle High School's basketball history from 1950 to the present paid a visit to the University of Maine at Presque Isle Bookstore for a book signing event on Nov. 4.Jim Carter, a 1964 PIHS grad who played on the basketball team in 1963 and 1964, spent long hours researching and collecting information for his 92-page book, titled "Six Decades of Wildcat Basketball: A History of Boys & Girls Basketball at Presque Isle High School 1950-2009." The book includes team rosters, statistics, coaching records, athlete honors, and old photographs.
Carter said during the book signing that he had chosen to start his book with the year 1950 because a book by Nathan W. White had covered the earliest years of basketball in Presque Isle. White's book is titled "Fifty-One Years of Basketball Playing in Aroostook County, Maine: 1900-1950."
Carter's book hits all the basketball highlights that have taken place since then - listing all of the high school's basketball players who made the 1,000-point club and leaving room for stories about former star athletes.
"I always found it interesting to learn what former outstanding players did on their own to become the great players that they were," Carter said. "Lots of people put in different types of workouts, including some who would play basketball every day, whether it was raining or hot and sunny - whatever it took to make themselves better. It's always been very informative to speak with former players and coaches and learn more about them and what the game of basketball meant to them as individuals."
While statistics and records are an important part of his book, Carter said that at its core, it's really a book that focuses on hard work and dedication in the sport.
"I knew a former player who had received many awards and praise, but he said ‘I never played the sport for those things, I played because I loved it and wanted to win,'" Carter said. "I think that's really important. It's about putting the team and the love of the game first."