After her sophomore season at Bangor High School, Alex Fahey had to make a difficult decision.
She wanted to play hockey, but after two seasons with the Bangor High School JV team, she didn’t feel she would get a varsity spot the following year. She also played softball at BHS.
So she left her lifelong friends behind and went to Kents Hill, where she captained the girls hockey team as a senior while also playing soccer and softball. She was a two-year softball captain.
“So many things went into (my decision). It was real tough to leave. I had a lot of really good friends,” said Fahey.
Her decision paid dividends as it led her to Bowdoin College where she has evolved into a consistent shutdown defenseman after being converted from left wing. She has strung together 2 1/2 solid campaigns for the Polar Bears, who are 7-4-1 this season including two wins over archrival Colby.
She had 18 points (4 goals, 14 assists) in her first two seasons combined and has a pair of assists in 11 games this season.
She is used in all situations: penalty-killing, power play and in the last minute of periods.
“She’s definitely a go-to player on our team,” said first-year coach Marissa O’Neil. “The most impressive thing about her is she practices how she plays. She never takes a drill off. She has real good feet and has great awareness on the ice. She’s very tough to knock off the puck. She has a quick release on her shot and is one of our best defensemen at getting the puck to the net.”
“She leads by example and has helped raise the level of play in our other players through her work ethic,” added O’Neil. “She has been great.”
“I’ve always worked hard at things,” said Fahey. “I’ve usually played against players who were a lot bigger and older and I had to work hard to keep up with them.”
She feels she has improved every season.
“I’m a lot more confident. I’ve got more poise with the puck now,” said Fahey, who is a junior. “When I used to get the puck, I didn’t know what to do with it. But I’ve improved in that area and I’m still working at it. I had a prep school coach who used to tell us to think about what we were going to do with the puck before we got it.”
One of the primary reasons she chose Bowdoin was so her parents, John and Cindy, could come see her play.
“They come to all of the games,” said Fahey, who began playing hockey when she was 8.
She has been happy with her career to date and hopes to continue her development.
“I’m really pleased with the way things have worked out,” said Fahey.
Fahey is one of 25 Maine natives playing college hockey in the state, including teammate Madeline Lane of Topsham.
Former Bangor High School goalie Josh Seeley is the number four goalie at the University of Maine and has yet to see action this season while Cumberland’s Danielle Cyr is a senior center for the Maine women’s team and has played in 15 games this season. She has played in 108 career games and has a goal and an assist.
The University of Southern Maine men’s team has nine in-state players: Lewiston’s Tom Gosselin and Ryan Boucher, Scarborough’s Stephen Cook and Jon Rutt, Cape Elizabeth’s Dan Rautenberg, Arundel’s Craig Perham, Minot’s Mike Carpenter, Auburn’s Kevin Smith and Saco’s Mason St. Hilaire.
The Biddeford-based University of New England has six in-state players, including freshman forward Matt Del Giudice of Oakland. He has two goals in 11 games. The others are Greene’s Cody Violette, Biddeford’s Tyler Fleurent, Lyman’s John Melancon, York’s Russ Franey and North Yarmouth’s Russ Simms.
Auburn’s Kailey Bubier leads the USM women in goals with six, and she is joined by South Berwick’s Ashley Grenier and Brunswick’s Mary Vaughan.
Brunswick’s Owen Smith and Scarborough’s Ben Tsujiura, son of former Maine Mariner Steve Tsujiura, play for Bowdoin College’s men’s team and Cape Elizabeth’s Meryl Poulin plays for the Colby women.
Bowdoin coach Pearson honored
Nicky Pearson, the head field hockey coach at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, has been named the 2010 Dita/NFHCA Division III Coach of the Year.
Pearson, a native of Hereford, England, guided the Polar Bears to a 20-1 record and their third national championship in the last four seasons. She was also named the nation’s top coach in 2007 and 2008, Bowdoin’s other title seasons.
In 15 seasons at Bowdoin, Pearson’s teams have compiled a 213-46 overall record (.830 winning percentage), which ranks fifth among all active NCAA coaches in all divisions.
Keneborous preseason All-American
Todd Keneborous of Saint Joseph’s College in Standish, has been named to the D3baseball.com Preseason All-America Second Team.
The senior right fielder from Hollis Center is among four New England players and the only one from Maine to be recognized. Keneborous was the 2010 Great Northeast Athletic Conference Player of the Year and a third-team All-American for coach Will Sanborn’s Monks.
He batted .464 with four home runs and 65 runs batted in. He scored 52 runs and posted 15 doubles and 13 triples, the latter of which ranked second in NCAA Division III. He led the GNAC in average, hits, RBIs, triples and total bases (130).