BANGOR, Maine — Michelle (Murray) Paradis has enjoyed considerable success during her first season as the girls’ basketball coach at Nokomis High School in Newport.
The third-seeded Warriors are 18-2 going into Saturday’s 2:05 p.m. Class B regional championship game against No. 1 Presque Isle.
She has surrounded herself with two first-year assistants who bring Division I playing experience to the table.
Former University of Maine players Kelly (Bowman) Flagg and Tanna Ross have embarked on their own high school coaching careers on the Nokomis bench.
Flagg was a star at Nokomis, where she was an all-tournament and BDN All-Maine first-team choice in 1994 and ‘95. She went on to play at UMaine from 1995-1999 and was a member of coach Joanne Palombo-McCallie’s team that beat Stanford in the first round of the NCAA tournament in 1999.
After graduating, she coached the Nokomis softball team for two seasons. Paradis, formerly Michelle Murray, was on that team.
“When she had applied for the position, I just said if you want any help, I’d been willing to help you out. It just kind of worked out,” Flagg said.
Flagg then started a family, which has kept her plenty busy during the last several years.
“I have three boys: 6-year-old twins and an 8-year-old,” she explained. “But they’re at an age now where I can venture out a little bit.”
As a senior for the Black Bears, Flagg shot 47 percent from the field, including 36 percent from 3-point range, and converted 84 percent of her free throws.
Ross earned All-Maine first-team recognition in 2007 at Hampden Academy, then played at UMaine from 2007-2010. The Newburgh native has always wanted to be involved in coaching.
Ross explained that she was a volunteer assistant last season at her alma mater, Hampden Academy.
“I’m coaching the freshman girls at Nokomis,” Ross said of her first paid position.
“I love it. Nokomis has quite a tradition and I definitely couldn’t pass up the opportunity to be a part of it.”
While at UMaine, Ross connected for 134 3-point field goals in 91 games. She averaged 8.8 points per game as a freshman (2007-08).
Ross shares the school record for 3-pointers in a game with seven, a mark equalled Wednesday night by Lauren Bodine.