The new boys basketball season brings with it plenty of players to watch around northern and eastern Maine. Here are 10 of them: Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik
Jackson Curtis, Sr., F, Ellsworth: Curtis’ shooting range stretches from the paint to beyond the 3-point arc, skills he put on display during last winter’s Class B North tourney when he averaged 19.0 points during Ellsworth’s trip to the semifinals. He’s now back with younger brother Hunter, a sophomore, as the Eagles seek to challenge defending state champion Caribou. Credit: Joseph Cyr | Houlton Pioneer Times
Tyrone Davis, Jr., G-F, Schenck: Davis emerged during last winter’s Class D North tournament when he scored 33 points in the quarterfinals and averaged a tourney-best 18.7 points for three games to help the Wolverines capture their first regional crown since 2010. His role figures to be even more prominent this winter with 2019 D North tourney MVP Travis Thompson among the graduation losses.
Parker Deprey, Sr., F. Caribou: Deprey recently competed in the Class B state championship game in boys soccer with the Vikings after already capturing state titles in tennis and basketball. Deprey earned second-team BDN All-Maine basketball status last winter after averaging 19.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.2 steals while leading the Vikings to their first basketball state championship in a half-century. Credit: Joseph Cyr
Keegan Gentle, Sr., G. Houlton: Gentle, who led Houlton to the Class C North crown last winter, will endeavor to help coach Tim Brewer’s club contend in Class B this season after the Shiretowners were moved up a class by enrollment. Gentle was the Class C North tournament MVP last year and averaged 16.0 points in four postseason games for 17-5 Houlton. Credit: Josh ODonnell | BDN
Dylan Huff, Jr., F., Brewer: Huff is one of several young players poised to elevate Brewer within the Class A North ranks after the Witches reached the semifinals last year. The second-team Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class A North all-star led his team in 3-point goals last winter and was successful driving to the basket to generate offense. Credit: Pete Warner
Bryce Lausier, Sr., G. Hampden Academy: Lausier is coming off a junior year when he earned Bangor Daily News All-Maine third-team recognition after leading the Broncos to a 14-4 regular-season record with 19.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 4.7 assists a game. Now 6-foot-4, Lausier has continually expanded his game since his freshman year, when he was 5-10. Credit: Josh ODonnell
Simon McCormick, Sr., G, Cony: The 5-foot-6 McCormick’s speed not only ignites Cony’s fast-paced offense, but also triggers the Rams’ defensive pressure. He’s coming off a junior year when he led coach T.J. Maines’ club to the No. 1 seed in Class A North, averaging 15.1 points, 5.1 assists and 5.0 steals while shooting 37 percent from beyond the arc. Credit: Ernie Clark
Andrew Szwez, Jr., F, Bangor: Szwez already has a state-title pedigree as a top reserve during his freshman year at 2018 Class C state champion George Stevens Academy in Blue Hill. Now the 6-5 Szwez is one of two impact transfers at reigning Class AA state champion Bangor — along with 6-8 senior Sam Martin — who will try to help returning standout Henry Westrich lead the Rams to another deep postseason run. Credit: Joseph Cyr | Houlton Pioneer Times
Isaac Varney, Sr., F., Hermon: Varney has played a major role as Hermon has gone 42-1 over the past two seasons with one Class B state title and a return to the North regional final game last winter. The two-time All-Big East first-teamer, who averaged 12.1 points, 6.7 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.8 steals and 1.5 blocked shots last season, is a centerpiece of coach Mark Reed’s roster this year as the Hawks seek another deep tournament run.
Owen Williams, Sr., G, Maine Central Institute: Williams was leading MCI in scoring and rebounds last winter before his season was cut short by injury. Huskies’ coach Josh Tardy reports that Williams is back “in great shape and hungry” for his senior season and poised to be one of the top players in the KVAC Class B ranks for the Class B North contenders.