Panther Vose nabs schoolgirl athlete-of-year honor
Waldoboro — Alanna Vose has been one of the constants for Medomak Valley High School athletics the past four years. Whether dribbling past a defender on the soccer pitch, draining a 3-pointer on the basketball court or excelling on the softball diamond or in track and field, it is fair to say Vose has done it all for the Panthers.
And now, Vose, who has received many awards the past four years for her tremendous athletic prowess, has one more for her proverbial mantle.
Vose, a 2012 graduate of MVHS, distanced herself from a pack of nine extremely talented student-athletes and earned the distinction as Courier Publications' 2011-12 schoolgirl athlete of the year.
Vose was selected over Belfast's Lexi Nelligan and Katrina Lapham; Medomak Valley's Mallory Conary and Amanda Hendrickson-Belloguet; and Oceanside's Allison Ward, Jill Bradbury, Kennadi Grover, Bethany Berry and Jessie Veilleux to earn the distinction.
Vose, who participated in soccer, basketball and outdoor track and field during the recent school year, said winning the award took her by surprise and it was "definitely an honor."
On the soccer pitch, Vose was named second-team all-conference and was the top scorer for the Panthers, leading them to an Eastern Class B playoff berth.
In outdoor track, Vose came out of nowhere in her first year in the sport and impressed her coaches and other KVAC student-athletes, finishing second in the long jump at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference championships. Her performance earned her a second-team all-conference honor. She also competed in the state Class B championships.
However, Vose's bread and butter could be seen on the basketball court, where she so effortlessly displayed her talents on offense and defense, making the Panthers a legitimate force to be reckoned with in Eastern Class B.
Vose, a 5-foot-6-inch point guard with quick hands and an even quicker release, was not only named first-team all-conference for basketball, but also was named KVAC Class B player of the year, beating other talented standouts such as Leavitt of Turner's Kristen Anderson and Camden Hills' Jordan Knowlton to win the award.
Vose led the Panthers to the postseason for the fourth straight year after a 22-year drought, which culminated in this year's quarterfinal loss to perennial favorite Nokomis of Newport.
However, Vose hit a historic mark during the game, netting her 1,000th career point, finishing her high school career with 1,010 points. Only two girls in MVHS history have reached 1,000 points.
“There’s a common denominator here,” said Medomak Valley girls basketball coach Randy Hooper following the quarterfinal loss in February. “We’ve been to the tournament the last four years and this is Alanna’s fourth year. She’s been a member of all those teams and every accolade she gets, she deserves.”
Vose will take her hardwood prowess to the collegiate ranks next season, where she will play basketball for the University of New England in Biddeford. The Nor'easters are a Division III program and compete in the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC).
Vose got the impression from the coach she would probably get significant minutes as a freshman for UNE this coming season.
She said the team is "in a competitive conference" and are "well-coached," winning the conference championship two years ago, though the team graduated three starters last year.
Vose grew up in Rockland and participated in many of the youth sports offered at the Rockland Recreation Center, but later moved to the Waldoboro area when she entered fourth grade.
"My parents say I was pretty much born with a ball in my hand," she said.
She said playing with fourth-grade players in the peewee ranks as a third-grader showed both her athletic ability and competitive drive blossoming at a young age.
As she made the jump to middle school and high school, she sharpened her focus and it showed, leading D.R. Gaul of Union to an undefeated season and the Busline League eighth-grade basketball championship.
From there, Vose never missed a beat, stepping into the starting role for the Panther varsity basketball team the following season as the team's point guard.
"I definitely took it seriously, especially in high school," she said. "Ever since I was little my goal was to make varsity as a freshman and another side goal was to get my 1,000 points [in basketball]."
She did both, citing scoring her 1,000th point as her favorite personal moment in her four-year athletic career.
"When I made it the crowd went absolutely nuts and I couldn't figure out why," said Vose. "I thought it was because we were making a comeback or something, but everyone just stood up and went nuts. Then coach [Hooper] called a timeout and said, 'Congratulations' and I was like, 'Oh my God, I did it.' "
Vose said that Oceanside girls basketball coach Teel Foster made an observation of her on the basketball court that she always remembered.
"She said that I was one of the only ones in the league that improved every single year," she said. "I really had worked on it."
Basketball undoubtedly was Vose's sport of choice with her reputation as a gym rat being well documented throughout her four years at Medomak Valley.
As a freshman, she dated upperclassmen and standout basketball player Alex MacKenzie, which helped her get into the gym more often at a younger age.
"The older kids were always allowed to go down in the gym and shoot when they had study halls and stuff," she said. "So I always went down and shot with him during my study hall or my lunch."
As a sophomore, Vose shot 100 foul shots every morning with close family friend Dustin Osier, while during her junior and senior years, she focused more on lifting weights, along with shooting during gym classes.
"I was always working on my skills and shooting and everything, and I guess it really paid off," she said.
Osier, one of Vose's most staunch supporters, died in an automobile accident last September as Medomak Valley was holding fall tryouts. Vose recalled playing many sports with Osier and called him "a good motivator" and a great friend.
While it would have been understandable for some to crawl under a rock to deal with such a tragic, personal loss, Vose said Osier would not have wanted that and instead, she turned his passing into a motivator.
"It definitely made me kick it into another gear [athletically]," she said. "He passed away during soccer season. It was hard to go to soccer tryouts because I had to go that day [that he died], but I just thought that was what he'd want me to do is go and not just cry because he had passed. He was always in the back of my mind whenever I was tired or out of breath."
Vose was an integral part of the Medomak Valley softball team the past few years, but opted not to play her senior year and instead planned to focus on getting a job, in addition to working out in preparation for the upcoming college basketball season at UNE.
That was the plan, at least.
"I was just going to do track workouts with the [Medomak Valley] track team that they did during their practices to stay in shape," she said. "Then I just got conned into joining the team, but I had no idea what I was going to do."
Vose ended up breaking the school record in the long jump (16 feet) and also came in second in the KVAC meet in that event, while also qualifying for the state Class B championship. Vose also was part of the 4x100-meter relay team that broke a school record (52.58), along with teammates Amanda Young, Julie Ennamorati and Lexi Genthner.
She grew to love track, wishing she had started the sport earlier in her life.
Needless to say, Vose has more than made her mark at Medomak Valley High School, and the ride was one she will not soon forget.
"I'm just going to miss everything about high school," she said. "I wasn't even ready to go. I'm going to miss everything about Medomak [Valley]. It was just an awesome experience."
Name: Alanna Vose.
Grade: 2012 Medomak Valley High School graduate.
Parents: Missy and Cappy Dean of Warren, and Chris and Holly Vose of Cushing.
Favorite personal moment in sports: Scoring my 1,000th career point at the Bangor Auditorium in my final game at Medomak Valley.
Favorite athlete: Rajon Rondo.
Favorite course in school: Anatomy.
TV show I never miss: One Tree Hill.
Favorite phone/computer app: Instagram.
What you listen to on your iPod before competing: Hardcore rap.
Favorite movie: Love & Basketball.
Food you pig out on: Chinese.
Favorite book: "The Knight" by Gene Wolfe.
Hobbies: Shopping, hanging out with friends.
Vehicle you wish you were driving: Audi.
Person you most want to meet (dead or alive): Channing Tatum.
Most influential people in your life: My parents.
Future plans: To go to the University of New England to play basketball and study physical therapy.
Courier Publications Associate Sports Director Mark Haskell can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email at email@example.com.