Brianne Maloney was recently hired to be South Portland’s girls’ basketball coach. Courtesy photo

Brianne Maloney is the new varsity girls’ basketball coach at South Portland High, taking over for her former coach, Lynne Hasson.

Maloney, 28, was an assistant coach on Hasson’s staff last season as well as the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons, and played for Hasson as a senior at South Portland (2013-14).

Maloney has also been an assistant volleyball coach at South Portland (2018 and 2019), assistant basketball coach at Saint Joseph’s College (2021), where she graduated in 2018, and was a coach for three seasons of club basketball with the Maine Firecrackers.

“My dad (John) was a coach for as long as I can remember and growing up in a house with a coach for a dad, coaching was something I always knew I wanted to do,” Maloney said. “When it became a reality was probably when I started playing at the high school and college level, and seeing women coaches, and young women coaches, and realizing this is something I can do and I don’t have to wait until I’m in my 40s.”

Hasson said Monday that she resigned under pressure following her 11th season as the Red Riots’ coach. South Portland Athletic Director Todd Livingston said of Hasson, “She retired. she resigned in early May.”

“On paper I resigned but only because I didn’t have a choice,” Hasson said. “I didn’t choose to stop coaching. Why would I? We had a 13-game winning streak, came in 14-4 and didn’t have a senior on the team. Why would I walk away from that?”


The girls’ basketball position was posted in May and Maloney’s hiring was approved last week, Livingston said.

“Brianne is an alumni. She’s come through the program and I know she cares deeply about the program, and I think she wants to take it to the next level,” Livingston said. “Our numbers have been down and we’ve been kind of hanging on to the JV team and I know she wants to build that back up. We’ve been successful. We’ve been in regional finals and a state game.”

Hasson compiled a 162-61 record, leading South Portland to the AA South final four times (2016, 2017, 2019, 2020), losing in the 2020 state final to Oxford Hills.

“I’m really happy for Brianne. I’ve coached her and I’ve known her since the day she was born,” Hasson said. “She’s a South Portland kid and loves the sport and loves the kids and is knowledgeable and I loved coaching her. … And, I loved coaching with her.”

Maloney, who has been directing the South Portland teams in summer league play, said Hasson supported her as a candidate to take over.

“I’ve known Lynne my entire life,” Maloney said. “Her husband (Chris) and my dad are friends. I can’t remember a day when I didn’t know Lynne.”


“She was very supportive. She wrote me a recommendation letter.”

South Portland could return all 20 players in its varsity and junior varsity programs (10 on each team). The varsity squad went 15-5 overall, finishing second to Gorham in the regular season and losing to No. 3 Scarborough, 36-31, in the regional semifinal.

“We’re not the same team we were and we don’t want to be the same team,” Maloney said. “We want to go farther in the playoffs.”

Maloney’s full-time employment is as a recreation leader  for the Portland Parks and Recreation Department. She said getting more girls to participate in sports – particularly basketball – is a goal for her both as South Portland’s coach and a recreational professional.

According to Maine Principals’ Association data, 2,196 girls played basketball in 2022-23, down nearly 28 percent from a decade earlier, when 3,039 played in 2012-13

“A huge thing for us and for neighboring towns is that in girls’ sports, and especially basketball, numbers have dropped significantly,” Maloney said. “Last year we were very low, barely enough for two teams.”


Maloney said she’s encouraging middle-school girls to participate in the summer league, and will host a summer camp and hopes to get some town-based leagues going.

“We want them to feel they’re part of the program,” Maloney said, and to “show all the elementary and middle school that it’s good to be more involved and how much fun it is to stay with the program.”

As a player at South Portland, Maloney played her first three seasons for Coach Mike Giordano (now the Scarborough girls’ coach) and was a third-team SMAA all-star as a junior and senior, averaging 11.7 points and 8.1 rebounds as a senior.

At that time, basketball was a four-class system, McAuley was the powerhouse program in the 18-team Western Class A, and one of Maloney’s South Portland teammates was Maddie Hasson, Lynne’s daughter, who would become the Division III national player of the year at Bowdoin. Maloney also played volleyball and lacrosse.

At Saint Joseph’s in Standish, Maloney was a four-year player on both the basketball and lacrosse teams. In basketball she appeared in 109 games for Coach Mike McDevitt, averaging 20 minutes per game as a junior and senior. As a senior, she scored nine points when the Monks claimed their first NCAA tournament victory. In lacrosse, Maloney started in 47 of 61 games as a defender and was all-Great Northeast Athletic Conference as a junior.

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