Matthew Fleming, Jr., F, Bangor: The rangy forward comes to Bangor after earning BDN All-Maine second-team accolades as a sophomore at Oxford Hills of South Paris and figures to provide a significant boost to the youthful Rams. The brother of University of Maine sophomore forward Andrew Fleming averaged 19.2 points and 9.8 rebounds per game for the Vikings last winter with a game that ranges from the rim to beyond the 3-point arc.
Nick Foley, Sr., G, Greenville: Perhaps the most experienced player in the state this winter after starting his varsity career as an eighth-grader, Foley is back for a fifth season after averaging nearly 20 points per game as a junior while leading the Lakers to the Class D South championship. Foley is capable of creating his own shot off the dribble or using his ballhandling skills to create opportunities for a veteran cast of teammates.
Bryce Gilbert, Sr., G-F, Piscataquis: Gilbert was one of the state’s top scorers a year ago at 25.5 points per game, and his versatility both on the perimeter and around the basket will be pivotal this winter as a veteran Pirates squad attempts to make a deep run in Class C North under first-year head coach Alden Gregory. And don’t foul Gilbert, he’s the reigning state free-throw shooting champion after making 48 of 50 attempts in the finals.
Griffin Guerrette, Sr., G, Presque Isle: Guerrette has made his presence known around the Big East Conference since his freshman year, and the All-Aroostook selection last season figures to be one of the top point guards in the region this winter after putting up solid numbers (14.8 points per game on 37 percent shooting from the 3-point line) as a junior for coach Terry Cummings’ Wildcats.
Zach Hartsgrove, Sr., G, Nokomis: Hartsgrove teams with classmate Josh Smestad to give the Warriors one of the top backcourt combinations in northern Maine regardless of class. A first-team Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class A all-star as a junior after averaging nearly 20 points per game and shooting 87 percent from the free-throw line, Hartsgrove will be counted on for similar production this winter as coach Ryan Martin’s club seeks to emerge among the upper echelon in Class A North.
Keenan Marseille, Sr., G, Hermon: Marseille has triggered the transition game for coach Mark Reed’s Hawks in recent years, with his speed and quickness and serving as both facilitator and finisher while averaging 14.3 points per game and achieving All-Big East Conference first-team status last winter. With a veteran Hermon squad now the preseason favorite in Class B North, Marseille’s leadership qualities also should be even more prominent this winter.
Ian McIntyre, Sr., F, Hampden Academy: The fourth-year starter for one of the state’s top programs heads up a deep Hampden roster that coaches in Class A North have labeled the preseason pick to win the division after a rare quarterfinal ouster last winter. McIntyre averaged 18.1 points and 10.8 rebounds per game while earning BDN All-Maine third-team recognition, and he’s likely to see more time working away from the basket this year.
Andrew Phelps, Sr., G, Mount Desert Island: The Trojans’ quarterback in both football and basketball, Phelps is poised to build off a junior season he capped off by scoring a team-high 16 points in MDI’s 59-39 victory over Wells in the Class B state championship game. The point guard is likely to be counted on to carry more of the scoring load for coach Justin Norwood’s club this winter.
Taylor Schildroth, Sr., G, George Stevens Academy: Schildroth will seek to lead GSA to a third consecutive Class C state championship after a junior season when he averaged 26.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 7.5 assists and 5.7 steals per game. Opposing teams will need to focus constant defensive attention on the quick-shooting guard, who scored 61 points in one game last year en route to earning BDN All-Maine first-team honors.
Michael Norton Jr., Sr. F, Oceanside: Norton is one of those rare high school players who can wreak considerable havoc without having plays designed for him. Strength, experience and anticipation often put the reigning first-team KVAC Class A all-star in the right place at the right time for rebounds and loose balls that often lead to game-changing offense. Evidence of that came last winter when he ranked among the Class A North leaders with 15.4 points, 11.5 rebounds and 4.1 free throws per game.