WALLINGFORD — The family of the late Nick Economopoulos is looking to keep his name alive with a scholarship in memory of the championship girls basketball coach.
Economopoulos died last May and now his wife Susan and his daughter Christine Madancy are heading an alumni fundraiser on Friday night during Lyman Hall’s home game against Wilbur Cross at 7 p.m. The proceeds will fund a scholarship in Economopoulos’ name.
“I get a little choked up just thinking about it,” said Madancy, who as Lyman Hall’s first-year coach now occupies the position her father did for 20 seasons. “It means a lot that we are going to give out a scholarship in my father’s name.
“I’m back on the sidelines at Lyman Hall because of him, because of my pride in the school,” Madancy added. “I grew up in that school. It was part of my family growing up. I want to keep that going for the girls in our town.”
The search is on for former Lyman Hall players, managers and coaches to participate on Friday night. Madancy estimated about 30 commitments so far.
There will be raffle baskets and a 50-50 raffle. At halftime, the scholarship will be announced and alumni introduced. There will be post-game gathering at Center Street Brewery.
“It’s going to be special because a lot of players are coming back,” said Madancy, whose daughter Ellie is a freshman player on this year’s team. “I want my girls to see the history of Lyman Hall that is very special to me.”
Sue Economopoulos said she and her daughter want to keep Nick’s legacy alive.
“He was here for 20 years and won two state titles,” Sue Economopoulos said. “We wanted to do something special for Nick. All of the proceeds go to the scholarship fund. We are trying to get it off the ground. I’m so pleased Christie initiated this.”
Economopoulos spent 20 years coaching Lyman Hall girls basketball and oversaw five state championship appearances in his tenure, which spanned from 1974 to 1993. He guided the Trojans to consecutive Class L state titles in 1985 and 1986.
Economopoulos later spent 13 seasons at East Catholic and won Class M state titles with the Eagles in 2002 and 2004. He amassed more than 600 wins in his career.
During his three-year high school coaching hiatus, Economopoulos continued to don the whistle for the Connecticut Starters AAU, a travel program he started in 1988.
Any alumni interesting in attending Friday’s event should contact Karen Milewski Kesilewski at firstname.lastname@example.org.