May 29, 2012

Athletes of the Year: 1988

On June 22, The Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram will honor the state's best high school athletes at our annual banquet. A player of the year for each sport will be honored and we'll name our male and female Athletes of the Year.

What makes this year so special is that it's the 25th year of honoring Maine's best, so we will be catching up with all our Athletes of the Year since the first banquet in 1988. Today, we honor the winners from 1988:

Missy Kelsen of Deering High

IN HIGH SCHOOL: Kelsen played field hockey, basketball and softball with an intensity that separated her from others. She was very competitive, very quick and poised. She pushed herself with a fierce attitude that was harnessed by her understanding and knowledge of whatever sport she played. Kelsen was the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram’s MVP for softball. She and star pitcher Karen Bailey led Deering to the Class A title. Kelsen could hit for power and was perhaps the best baserunner of her time. She attempted 105 stolen bases in her career, was thrown out only once.

SINCE HIGH SCHOOL: Kelsen’s basketball career at the University of Vermont coincided with the program’s rise to dominance in the North Atlantic Conference, which later became America East. A starting guard, Kelsen helped lead Vermont to a 29-0 record, which included a 20-point victory in the 1992 NAC championship game over a Maine team that had Rachel Bouchard, Chris Strong, Carrie Goodhue and Julie Bradstreet. Vermont received an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament and was seeded ninth. The Catamounts lost to eighth-seeded George Washington by a point. Kelsen is now the chief financial officer of a commuter airline whose corporate headquarters is in the Burlington, Vt., area. She has two children.

WHAT IT MEANT TO WIN: Kelsen likes to say she wasn’t keen on attending the reception for 1987-88 MVPs and the announcement of the first male and female Athletes of the Year. Her parents persuaded her to go. “Now it’s a big deal,” Kelsen has said. “It’s huge. It’s an extreme honor when I think of all the other women I played against and played with.”

Tim Scott, Ellsworth High

IN HIGH SCHOOL: Scott was the star on three teams that played for state championships during one of Ellsworth’s golden eras. Ellsworth won the Class B championship in soccer and baseball and was the runner-up for the Class B basketball title. Scott averaged 24.5 points and 9.5 rebounds per game and was named the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram MVP in basketball. His No. 24 basketball jersey was retired by Ellsworth High.

SINCE HIGH SCHOOL: He was a starting infielder on the University of Maine baseball team under legendary coach John Winkin for four years. In 1992, the Colorado Rockies drafted him in the 36th round of the major league draft. Scott played two years for the Rockies at the Class A level. He lives in Hampden with his wife, son and daughter, works for the family landscaping business and coaches.

WHAT IT MEANT TO WIN: “I was probably shocked (when I heard my name.) There were quite a few great athletes in that group with me. Obviously it was a happy moment for me and my family.”

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