The Brunswick girls basketball team poses for a photo last Friday after their win over Mt. Ararat in Topsham. The win was 200th of head coach Sam Farrell’s career, and his 144th at Brunswick. Photo provided by Sam Farrell

BRUNSWICK — Brunswick girls basketball coach Sam Farrell is quick to deflect credit.

“Coaches don’t win the games, the players do,” he said.

Coaches, of course, can play a big role in a team’s success, and Farrell has certainly done that during his time with the Dragons.

And on March 5, Farrell reached a milestone, winning his 200th career game in a 58-40 victory over Mt. Ararat in Topsham.

“One thing we have emphasized in the program for years is that individual accomplishments are really team accomplishments,” said Farrell, who has 144 career victories at Brunswick. “That’s something we have tried to resonate with the players year in and year out.”

Farrell took over the Brunswick program in 2009, after a two-year stint at Greely, and a year each at Winthrop and Lincoln Academy.


Sam Farrell talks to his team during a playoff game during the 2019 season. Photo provided by Sam Farrell

For Farrell, who teaches math at Brunswick High, it was an opportunity to coach at the school he teaches.

Farrell said he received plenty of help to reach 200 career victories.

“I’ve been lucky to have some committed coaches with me, and a whole lot of talented and committed players to come through the program and play for me,” he said.

The Dragons hadn’t reached the playoffs since 1987 and were looking to end that drought.

In the first season under Farrell, the Dragons reached the regional final, but fell to Skowhegan at the buzzer.

“I still remember those 8.2 seconds like it was yesterday,” Farrell said jokingly.

Farrell added that being a teacher at the school helped him build the program.

“When you are building those relationships and that culture, it helps a ton to teach in the building where I coach,” he said. “I think it’s an important factor that doesn’t get thought about enough. … The most important thing I’ve learned over the years is gain the trust of the players and to respect them so you can coach them hard and be honest with them,” added Farrell. “We have alumni reaching out wanting to help every season, they want to help continue the culture they helped build with me.”

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