Keefe Tech boys basketball player Dave Maude is a young man with a future in the trades
Rare is the kid who knows exactly what he’s going to do before he graduates high school. Even rarer is the kid who is actually doing it, and putting some money in his pocket, while he’s still in high school.
So, meet Dave Maude, age 18. He’s known for a while being a plumber would fit him as neatly as the pipes and fixture that go into repairing a bathroom problem.
“You can make a lot of money as a plumber,” Maude rationalized. And the process has started even before he’s picked up his diploma at Framingham’s Keefe Tech. Here’s the senior’s deal at Keefe: one week in the classroom, math, history, tools like that, and one week working with tools of his chosen trade with his instructors. He’s also delivering fixtures for a supply company as part of co-op gig that cuts him a check for his efforts. Setting all this up was mid-teens Maude’s work as a plumber’s helper. His plan is to be a master plumber by 21.
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Still time for sports: 'He works his tail off'
Somehow, Maude’s found time to play basketball and baseball at Keefe. He had a brief stay as a freshman at Framingham High, where he played soccer, before transferring to Keefe Tech. His coaches rave about his otherworldly work effort.
“He works his tail off,” said basketball coach Kevin Bresciani. “He does a little bit of everything for us.”
Baseball coach Phil Rosano has played Maude at many positions. “He’s a very serious kid, kind of quiet,” he said. “There’s an intensity about him. He’s a leader by example, which is great for the younger kids.”
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But Maude sensed early on that sports for him would begin and yet fade away at Keefe. College was not a consideration. He knew the road taken would be a given. Maude was already chasing a trade that could “set you up for life. A lot of master plumbers retire early.” To be his own master; that’s the goal.
Which isn’t to bash playing sports. Not at all. He began with basketball in fifth grade, played at the ‘Y’ and stepped up to the famously competitive action at the Bowditch Field courts. Big boy hoops, dating back to the 70’s.
Maude was a sophomore starter at Keefe and quickly showed an inclination, and it was on defense. “I’m a hustle guy, a facilitator. I love to set up teammates.” He’s five-foot-7. “Five-eight on a good day,” he claimed.
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“Dave’s quick and athletic,” said Bresciani, in his first season coaching Keefe. Just 25, Bresciani coached the Blackstone Valley Tech JV hoop team last year and is Hopedale’s baseball coach. He’s in the physical education department at Keefe. When you’re 25 you can do all these things.
Maude missed 10 days of the current basketball season, including the season opener, due to COVID. “I still think he’ll be one of our better scorers,” said Bresciani. “You can put the ball in his hands. On defense he’s ferocious. He can go a long time without fouling.”
Maude can fly: 'I trust him to steal bases on his own'
He may not be big but Maude can fly. “I trust him to steal bases on his own,” said Rosano, who started as Keefe’s JV baseball coach and has run the varsity the last eight years. In total, 26 years at the school.
Rosano even gives Maude the green light to steal when he’s on second base. How many players ever had that option? OK, Rickey Henderson.
In Maude’s freshman season, Rosano put him in the leadoff spot. His on-base percentage was .533. He infrequently struck out his junior year. On-base percentage .484. He racked up 12 of the team’s 16 stolen bases. Maude bats left-handed, a bonus with his speed. “If I hit a little dribbler down the third base line I’d probably beat it out.”
Playing for the Framingham Post 74 legion team was a step up. “It was more competitive. Pitchers were throwing 85 (mph),” said Maude. He made the adjustment. In the field, he played shortstop.
“His commitment to being the best he could be is contagious,” said Keefe athletic director Chris Kane.
And sometimes things get wacky on the diamond. So you’ve probably seen the baseball comedy “Bad News Bears.” A laugh a minute, right? Well, Maude’s got a baseball meets bear story.
And it ain’t funny.
It happened when his Framingham Little League travel team journeyed to the Berkshires for a tournament. Between games, the players figured what the heck, we’re in the wilderness, let’s go play Manhunt, a variation of tag, in the woods. And they did, running to various hiding places.
Suddenly, they were running for their lives. The boys spotted a bear, and vice-versa apparently. As the boys high-tailed it, Maude, slipped, cutting his leg, picking himself and running again. Stealing third base was never this hazardous.
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Maude got his leg stitched up and played in two games the next day. Framingham won the tournament. We could say bear-ly, but the final scores are vague.
While bats and balls and gloves have been a staple in Maude’s young life, wrenches, measuring tools and faucet and sink apparatus are essential now. “He is making the most of his experience at Keefe Tech,” said Kane.
Maude agrees. “Knowing what I wanted to do in life, Keefe is the right place for me.” You can just see him now, on his knees accessing the problem with a toilet before attacking it.
Bonus points for the customer. The bear in the woods story, no extra charge.
(Reach Lenny Megliola at email@example.com)
This article originally appeared on MetroWest Daily News: Keefe Technical High boys basketball player Dave Maude plumbing future