Clyde Washburne retired from the Health and Physical Education Department in August, 1987 after serving as head coach of three different sports for a total of 22 years. Washburne coached baseball (12-16 won-loss record) in 1967 and ’68, basketball (133-88) between 1968-77 and women’s softball (260-100-1) from its inception in 1977 through 1987. In 1981, the Warriors won the school’s first national title and followed up that AIAW softball championship with three (1982, ’85, ’86) NCAA national titles and three third-place finishes. A Willimantic native, Washburne was named national softball Coach-of-the-Year in 1982, ’85 and ‘86. Taking over a basketball team which had a suffered five straight losing seasons, Washburne produced immediate success, the Warriors winning 75 and losing only 23 over the ensuing four seasons. In those four years, Eastern qualified for four straight New England State College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) tournaments, winning its first NESCAC post-season tournament title in 13 years in 1971-72.
(Note: Washburne returned as interim head softball coach for the 1993 season following the death of head coach Jeff Anderson in 1992).