Two more local standouts, South Portland senior Maggie Whitmore and Scarborough senior Hannah Dobecki, signed National Letters of Intent Tuesday, as they’ll go on to play at the collegiate level.

South Portland senior girls’ basketball standout Maggie Whitmore, joined by her parents, Kevin and Michele, sister Annie and Coach Lynne Hasson, is all smiles after signing her National Letter of Intent to play at Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts. Contributed photo.

In South Portland, Maggie Whitmore, one of the state’s premier girls’ basketball players, committed to Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts.

Whitmore, the granddaughter of longtime Colby College men’s coach Dick Whitmore, has made her mark for three seasons with the Red Riots, being named to the league all-star first-team last winter.

Maggie Whitmore credited family members, coaches and teammates for her success and is looking forward to making a run at an elusive state title before leaving South Portland.

“I’ve been blessed with so many great people, coaches, family, friends,” said Whitmore. “Them all being here today is a true blessing. It came down to a couple D2 and D3 schools, but Bentley feels like a great fit for me. Basketball-wise, I’ll be able to compete for a championship every year. They have a tremendous coaching staff. I really connected with some of the other girls from Maine. It feels like a great fit academically too.

“There’s a deep basketball tradition in my family. Definitely something in my gene pool. A love for the game. Being around it my whole life, I’ve been exposed to so many people with a strong passion and I’ve loved it since a young age.

“South Portland will always have a place in my heart. We’ve got one more year to prove what we’ve got.”

Red Riots coach Lynne Hasson feels that Whitmore is the state’s best player and that her work ethic got her to the next level.

“Maggie doesn’t just work hard when people are watching and that’s why she’s great,” said Hasson, who lives next door to the Whitmores. “She always puts the team first. She’s unselfish. She’s a great leader. She does whatever the team needs to be successful. She makes everyone around her better.

“Maggie likes to kind of fly under the radar. She’s very humble, but she’s a role model for female athletes. I can count on one hand the number of female basketball players we’ve had here to sign a NLI and we’ve had a lot of really good players.

“She’s had a phenomenal (high school) career. She’s accomplished a lot in her first three years and I guarantee you that her best is yet to come. In my opinion, she’s the best player in the state and she’s going to lead us to great things.”

Scarborough senior field hockey standout Hannah Dobecki, joined by her parents, Dennis and Kathleen, teammates and Coach Kerry Mariello, smiles after signing her National Letter of Intent to play at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, New Hampshire. Michael Hoffer / For The Forecaster.

In Scarborough, Dobecki, an All-SMAA field hockey selection, followed in the footsteps of her sisters Lindsay Dobecki (who played at Merrimack College) and Maddy Dobecki (who played at St. Michael’s College) and will play at the next level, choosing Southern New Hampshire University Manchester, New Hampshire.

Dobecki, a lock-down defender for the Red Storm, was joined by her family, teammates and Coach Kerry Mariello at her signing.

“I’m super-excited for this to come true,” Dobecki said. “I’ve worked hard for a long time. I knew I wanted to play in the NE-10 and I found a school not too far from home. I loved the campus right away and knew it would be a great fit. They like how I am as a player and think I’ll fit in well with the rest of the team. My two older sisters both played in college, so I knew I wanted to keep that going.”

Mariello said that Dobecki’s willingness to do whatever it took to help her team win set her apart.

“Hannah saw her sisters go far and it’s shaped her,” Mariello said. “She’s just a great all-around kid. She aggravated a lot of opponents for us. Her greatest weapon was her ability to stop any offensive opportunity the other team had. It’s always great and encouraging to see a player from the program go on and play in college.”

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

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