Monday, March 10, 2014
Three-sport standout? Or one-sport star? Large school? Or small?
Sunday, some of the very best high school athletes in the state will come together in Portland to celebrate the 2012-13 high school season.
The 26th annual Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram All-Sports Awards Ceremony will be held at the Italian Heritage Center, beginning with a social gathering at 11:30 a.m. Athletes selected as Player of the Year by the newspaper staff in the 28 sports sanctioned by the Maine Principals' Association will be honored, with the overall Male and Female Athletes of the Year announced about 2:15 p.m.
Julia Clukey, the U.S. Olympic women's luger, will be the guest speaker.
Here's a brief look at the athletes who will be honored:
BOYS' CROSS COUNTRY
Dan Curts, a junior at Ellsworth, had the fastest time in any class, 15 minutes, 47 seconds, over the 5-kilometer course in Belfast at the state championships, winning the Class B title by edging Silas Eastman of Fryeburg Academy at the finish line. He was a repeat all-New England runner with a 17th-place finish and was 25th at the Foot Locker Northeast Regional.
GIRLS' CROSS COUNTRY
Waterville senior Bethanie Brown ran the fastest time of any class (17:56) at the state championships by nearly a minute. She was seventh in the New England championships and 11th at the Foot Locker Northeast Regional. She set mile and 2-mile records in the indoor season, and won the 800, 1,600 and 3,200 as well as anchoring a winning relay team in the outdoor season. She plans to continue her running career at the University of Connecticut.
Kristy Bernatchez of Messalonskee in Oakland has been one of the state's best players for years, but this year became a dominant force. She scored 47 goals and was the only person to score against Skowhegan, doing it twice. She will attend the University of North Carolina.
Andrew Libby, a junior, led Thornton Academy to its first Class A state championship since 1988 with a display of versatility seldom seen. He scored 30 touchdowns -- 23 on rushes, two on passes, four on punts and one on an interception return. He rushed for 1,092 yards and did his best work in the playoffs.
Reese McFarlane of Cape Elizabeth is only a sophomore, but he is already accustomed to winning big tournaments. He won the Class B individual title with a 74, one week after shooting a 69 on the same course in the team tournament. He was 11-1 in the regular season.
Alice Hwang of Bangor was a member of the boys' team and played in eight matches as a junior. She won the schoolgirl title with an 84. Her family has since moved to Orlando, Fla., where she will continue to play golf.
Senior J.P. White of Falmouth could have played just about anywhere, but he was most effective in the middle of the field, where he could direct everything. He was pretty effective, with 12 goals and 12 assists, as Falmouth won its third Class B state championship in four years. He will attend Hobart College.
Caitlin Bucksbaum of Falmouth was at her best when it mattered most. She scored four game-winning goals as a senior and assisted on five game-winning goals. A midfielder, she helped Falmouth win back-to-back state titles. Also a member of the ski team as well, she will attend Villanova.
Mariah Hebert became the leader of a Biddeford team that advanced to the state championship match. A setter, she had 350 assists while also accruing 47 kills. She served at 96 percent and had 48 aces. She also had 56 digs. She is planning to attend St. Joseph's College.
Garet Beal of Jonesport-Beals was nearly unstoppable. He averaged 33.8 points per game as a senior on his way to finishing his career with a school-record 1,672 points. He also averaged 10.7 rebounds, 5.5 assists, 2.5 steals and 1.5 blocks, earning the Mr. Basketball Award. Beal will attend the University of Maine.
Allie Clement of McAuley did not have the best statistics of any player in the state; all she did was win. A junior point guard, she led McAuley to a third consecutive Class A state championship, averaging 17 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.7 steals and 2.6 assists. She has verbally committed to attend Marist College.
Ted Hart, a junior at Greely High in Cumberland, led the state in scoring with 35 goals as he helped the Rangers to their second consecutive Class B state title. He also had 16 assists. Hart will play next year at Phillips Exeter Academy.
Mary Morrison, a sophomore defenseman, shined in the biggest moments for Greely. She scored the game's only goal in a 1-0 victory over Scarborough in the state championship game. Solid defensively, she also had 19 goals and 16 assists for the Rangers. She was the leader of a defense that allowed only 22 goals all season.
A two-time Skier of the Year, Silas Eastman of Fryeburg Academy was a dominant performer in two sports: skiing and cross country running. For three years in a row he won both the classic and freestyle events at the Class A state championships, all by large margins. He plans to attend Colby College.
Elise Luce, a junior, continued the tradition of outstanding skiers at Mt. Abram. She is a two-time slalom and giant slalom Class B state champion, and this year was the top Maine qualifier in the Eastern High School championships, finishing eighth in slalom.
A repeat selection as Swimmer of the Year, Trebor Lawton led Cheverus to the Class A state championship. A senior, he won the 100 backstroke and 100 butterfly, and swam on two relays. He will continue his swimming career at Connecticut College, where he plans to major in biology.
Sarah Easterling, a senior at Greely High, has dominated her sport like no other. This is the third time she was selected as Swimmer of the Year. Easterling finished her career by setting a state record in the 100 backstroke (56.51 seconds) and a Class B record in the 200 individual medley (2:04.85). She will continue her career at the University of Arkansas.
BOYS' INDOOR TRACK
Jared Bell, a senior at Deering High in Portland, was more than just a big-meet performer. He was a student of sport, trying to perfect the art of throwing a shot put, discus or javelin. He won the shot put in the Class A state meet and was third at the New England championships. Bell will continue his career at Princeton.
GIRLS' INDOOR TRACK
Kate Hall, a sophomore at Lake Region in Naples, can outrace and outjump just about anyone. She won the 55-meter dash and set state records in the 200 and long jump at the Class B state meet, then won the 55 in the New Englands. Outdoors, she was the New England champ in the 100 and set all-time state bests in the 100, 200 and long jump.
Dan Del Gallo of Gardiner continued his family's wrestling tradition. He won his third consecutive individual state title, this time at 138 pounds. He had a career record of 194-2, ending his career as the school's all-time winningest wrestler. His school's senior class president, he will attend the University of Southern Maine.
Ben Greenberg, a junior, was nearly unhittable as a pitcher and unstoppable as a batter for Scarborough. He went 6-0 with a 0.54 earned-run average, holding opponents to a .163 batting average, and hit .415 with five triples. His fastball has topped out at 88 mph.
Danica Gleason, a senior at South Portland, has been perhaps the best defensive shortstop in the state for years. This year she added an extremely potent bat. She hit .667 with six doubles, four triples, six home runs and 35 RBI. Gleason will try to play both basketball and softball at St. Joseph's College.
Charlie Fay, a senior at Falmouth, once again led the Yachtsmen in scoring, with 49 goals and 11 assists. At 6-foot-5, he is a dominant player at both ends of the field. He helped Falmouth win the Class B state championship in basketball and is hoping to play both basketball and lacrosse at Bates College.
Martha Veroneau of Waynflete continued her reputation as one of the most dynamic athletes in the state. A repeat selection as lacrosse Player of the Year, she scored 30 goals and 25 assists during the regular season. She led the Waynflete girls' basketball team to the Class C state championship. She plays to study nursing at Boston College.
BOYS' OUTDOOR TRACK
Nick Danner, a senior at Waterville, set a Class B record in the javelin (breaking the old mark by 13 feet with a throw of 192 feet, 9 inches -- and would have won the Class A meet by 20 feet) and also won the shot put by three feet.
GIRLS' OUTDOOR TRACK
Teal Jackson, a senior at Brewer, achieved the rare feat of winning four individual events in the Class A state meet -- something done only one other time in the last 30 years. She set a state record of 57.00 seconds in the 400 and also won the 100, 200 and long jump.
Jordan Friedland, a senior at Lincoln Academy in Newcastle, repeats as our Player of the Year after winning the boys' individual title for the second consecutive year. Last year he was the No. 5 seed. This year he was seeded first and won all his matches in straight sets. He will play club tennis when he attends Stanford.
Olivia Leavitt, a sophomore at Falmouth, won the girls' individual title by defeating defending champ Maisie Silverman of Brunswick, 6-1, 6-1. She has had two undefeated regular seasons (never dropping a set in a 14-0 freshman year) and was 8-0 in the regular season and 6-0 in the singles tournament this year.
Mike Lowe can be contacted at 791-6422 or at: