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Here are 10 girls basketball players to keep an eye on this season across the five North classes.
Alisyn Alley, Soph., F, Stearns: The fourth of the four standout Alley sisters led No. 9 Stearns past top seed Central Aroostook of Mars Hill in their Class C quarterfinal to earn all-tourney honors. “She’s phenomenal,” Stearns coach Nick Cullen said of the Bangor Daily News All-Maine honorable mention. “She is amazing to watch. She has the best floor vision I’ve ever seen. She’s our best rebounder and passer.”
Julia Colby, Sr., G, Oxford Hills: The All-Maine first-team pick had a remarkable junior season, leading the Vikings to the Class AA state championship. Oxford Hills coach Nate Pelletier called Colby, who is headed to the New York Institute of Technology, the best ball-handler he has ever coached and a natural point guard. Colby averaged 18.5 points, 6.5 rebounds, 4 steals and 3.2 assists.
Lauren Cook, Sr., G, Calais: Cook is a scoring machine who averaged 22.5 points in two Class C North tourney games a year ago. She earned all-tourney honors for the second straight year. She is quick and can score from anywhere which makes her very difficult to guard.
Emily Curtis, Jr., C, Woodland: The 5-foot-11 center established herself as one of the region’s best post players. She led the Dragons to a 59-33 Class D North victory over Katahdin in the quarterfinals with 16 points, 10 rebounds and five steals, then posted 30 points and 19 rebounds in a semifinal loss to undefeated Deer Isle-Stonington. She was an all-tourney selection and an All-Maine honorable mention.
Sadie Garling, Sr., F, Waterville: Garling paced the Panthers to a berth in the Class B North championship game. The All-Maine honorable mention and all-tourney selection (16.5 ppg, 4 rpg, 2.5 apg) was the KVAC Class B North Player of Year. The 3-point specialist is an excellent defender who forces a lot of turnovers in their full-court press.
Peyton Grant, Jr., G, Dexter: The versatile guard is an outstanding shooter with a long list of 20-point games. She can hit the 3, a midrange jumper or take the ball to the rim. She is a good ballhander with a high basketball IQ. Grant is a smart defender with good instincts. She is a two-time Class C North all-tourney pick and an All-Maine honorable mention.
Lexi Ireland, Sr., G-F, Penobscot Valley: A relentless worker, the 5-9 Ireland can play point guard or center. She led the Howlers to their first regional championship since 1986 and earned Class C North tournament MVP honors and was an All-Maine honorable mention. “She has the heart of a champion. She is a competitor. She is a winner,” PVHS coach Nate Case said.
Lexi Mittelstadt, Sr., G, Mt. Blue: The two-time All-Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference first-team selection led the league in scoring (19.5 ppg) and assists (3.7) last season. The UMaine-bound Mittelstadt, an All-Maine honorable mention, can create shots for herself and likes to attack the rim. Messalonskee coach Keith Derosby called her an elite player and “one of the most versatile scorers in the KVAC.”
Trinity Montigny, Sr., G, Ellsworth: Montigny led the Big East Conference in scoring last season (16.6 ppg) thanks to 38.4 percent 3-point shooting. She is also a good passer with impressive court vision who averaged 2.6 assists per game. Defense is also in her arsenal as she averaged 2.9 steals per game en route to All-Maine honorable mention.
Makaelyn Porter, Sr., G-F, Southern Aroostook: Porter has led the Warriors to two straight Class D state titles. The two-time North tourney MVP averaged 14.5 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds. “Her basketball IQ is phenomenal,” Southern Aroostook coach Cliff Urquhart said. “She’s a good shooter, a good ball-handler and she can find the open player.”