While many were focused on bouncing basketballs, flying pucks and combination moves for wrestling pins, a handful of Midcoast student-athletes were excelling in indoor track at facilities such as Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Colby College in Waterville, Bates College in Lewiston and the Unversity of Maine in Orono over the winter.

Many local student-athletes had wonderful and exciting seasons on the track during Maine’s coldest months, but only a handful are selected as notables by VillageSoup. Those 15 are members of VillageSoup’s first annual indoor track notables, highlighted in this story.

VillageSoup has now named high school winter athletic notables in indoor track, boys and girls basketball and wrestling. The next, and final notables, will be swimming, to be coming in a future edition of VillageSoup sports.

The indoor track notables had to meet specific requirements. They had to qualify and participate in an individual event at the state Class B meet or finish first in an individual event at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B championships. Members of relay teams were not selected unless a relay team finished among the top six at the state meet.

The 2009-10 VillageSoup indoor track notables include Belfast’s Abbie Wessels, Wilbur Fogg, Hannah Hill, Ryan James, Willie Leach, Tim Parker, Jake Levangie and Fanny Fennimore; Camden Hills’ Ryan Widzgowski; Rockland’s Lincoln Spear, Rebecca Picard and Alex Young; and Medomak Valley’s Gwen Moiles, Julie Ennamorati and Kiana Ocean.

Spear, Young, Widzgowski, James, Parker, Ocean, Ennamorati, Leach, Fogg and Fennimore are seniors; Hill and Moiles juniors; Wessels and Picard sophomores; and Levangie a freshman.

Indoor track is offered at Belfast, Rockland and Mount View. However, independent student-athletes from Camden Hills and Medomak Valley also practiced and participated in meets with Rockland this year.

At the state Class B championship meet, the York girls (65 points) and Falmouth boys (71) won titles, while the Belfast girls had nine points and Lion boys 14. The Camden Hills boys garnered seven points and Medomak Valley girls three. The Rockland boys and girls did not score points at the state meet.

The Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B meet was broken into junior and senior divisions. The junior division is for freshmen and sophomores, while the senior division is for juniors and seniors. More weight would have been given to other notables who performed well at the league meet, however, because the meet was broken into Class A and Class B and further into junior and senior divisions, there were fewer participants in individual events and among relay teams, thus making it more likely for an individual to finish among the top few places. Thus, only the individuals who placed first in the KVAC meet are selected as notables.

Overall at the league meet, the Waterville boys (223) and girls (224) won league Class B crowns. For the local boys, Belfast was fourth (77), Rockland fifth (22), Camden Hills sixth (18) and Mount View seventh (14). For local girls, Belfast was third (59), Medomak Valley fifth (46), Rockland sixth (44) and Mount View eighth (11).

For more than three decades The Courier-Gazette and VillageSoup newspapers featured end-of-the-season stories that highlighted the cream of the Midcoast high school athletic crop in Knox and part of Lincoln counties. Those stories included the paper’s “all stars” for that season and sport.

However, with the inclusion of student-athletes from Waldo County high schools to reflect VillageSoup’s more regional weekly print publication, the company now ushers in an era with its seasonal sports notables.

The notable student-athletes will represent schools in Knox, Waldo and part of Lincoln counties and, while not termed “all stars,” those highlighted experienced the most consistently strong seasons and distinguished themselves in their sport. Thus, they are worthy of being spotlighted.

VillageSoup will name notables in all high school varsity sports where there are at least two Midcoast teams in that season playing an official varsity schedule. Student-athletes who will be considered for notable distinction can come from Belfast Area High School, Camden Hills Regional High School, Rockland District High School, Medomak Valley High School, Georges Valley High School, Vinalhaven High School, North Haven Community School, Islesboro Central School, Mount View High School and Searsport District High School.

In naming notables in a sport, VillageSoup is not trying to highlight every potentially deserving student-athlete from a given team, only to highlight the most consistently strong performers during a particular season in a particular sport. Obviously, with any such list of notables being subjective, not all those initially considered ultimately will make the final list of notables.

In addition, there usually is at least one representative from each school in a given sport, but that is not always the case. From that point, the rest of the notables could be a mix of student-athletes from many schools, or weighted heavily on one or two schools. Obviously, the more success a particular team has will, in some respects, dictate the number of potential notables it receives.

In most sports, the nomination process for a sport begins with the VillageSoup sports department polling area coaches to provide a list of what they feel are each respective team’s premier players for that season, not necessarily for a high school career. The notables are based on individual performances, although the strength of a team’s season may impact how many players from a specific team are selected.

A nomination only guarantees each candidate’s consideration, not ultimate notable status. While the input of each coach is weighed heavily with each candidate, the final decisions are made by VillageSoup Sports Director Ken Waltz and Associate Sports Director Mark Haskell.

Again, not all potential notables will ultimately become VillageSoup’s notables. Only those nominated by coaches and ultimately selected by the VillageSoup sports staff.

The selection process is somewhat different for track and swimming because the times and places attained by local student-athletes are not subjective, but concrete and tell exactly how they stack up with the competition. Thus, coaches are not involved in the selection process for notables for those two sports.

A list of this year’s indoor track notables, in alphabetical order, and their winter accomplishments follow:

Ennamorati finished first in the KVAC Class B junior division in the 55 meters (8.14 seconds). She also finished second in the KVAC Class B junior division 200 meters (29.58) and fourth in the Class B long jump (13-feet 3-inches).

Fennimore finished seventh in the state pole vault (7 feet). She also was a member of the Lion 4×200-meter relay team that finished 10th (2:00.64, with teammates Emily Violette, Casie James and Hill). Fennimore finished first in the KVAC Class B pole vault (7-0). In the same meet, Fennimore finished 11th in the 55 meters (8.98). She also finished eighth in the KVAC Class B long jump (12-8.25).

Fogg, the area’s lone state champion last winter (he also won a sprint title in last year’s outdoor state meet), won the state 200 meters (23.26), was fifth in the 55-meter finals (6.84) and sixth in the 55-meter prelims (6.85). He also was a member of the Lions’ 4×200-meter team that finished 18th (1:46.29, with teammates Levangie, Leach and Miles Lemar). At the KVACs, Fogg finished third in the 55-meter senior division (6.84) and second in the senior division 200 meters (23.72). Finally, he placed third in the KVAC Class B long jump (17-9)

Hill finished second in the state triple jump (34-6.75) and 14th in the state 200 meters (28.51). She also was a member of the Lions’ 4×200-meter relay team that finished 10th (2:00.64, with teammates Emily Violette, Casie James and Fennimore). Hill was second in the KVAC Class B senior division 400 meters (1:05.10). In the league Class B senior division 200 meters, Hill finished second (28.78). She also was second in the KVAC Class B triple jump (33-10.25).

James finished seventh in the state mile (4:46.31). He also finished third in the KVAC Class B mile (4:39.69). In the league two-mile event, James finished third (10:29.43).

Leach finished 11th in the state two miles (11:09.24). He also was a member of BAHS’ 4×200-meter team that finished 18th (1:46.29, with teammates Levangie, Fogg and Lemar). In the league two-mile event, Leach finished fifth (10:54.43).

Levangie finished ninth in the state Class B high jump (5-4). He also was a member of the Lions’ 4×200-meter team that finished 18th (1:46.29, with teammates Fogg, Leach and Lemar). Levangie also finished first in the KVAC Class B junior division 400 meters (57.45) and high jump (5-2). He also was second in the league’s junior division 200 meters (26.66).

Moiles finished sixth in the state mile (5:40.40). She also was part of the Panthers’ state 4×800-meter team that finished eighth (11:00.98, along with teammates Ocean, Megan Wyllie and Taylor Keefe). Moiles won the KVAC Class B mile (5:39.09).

Ocean finished seventh in the state mile (5:59.69). She also was part of the Panthers’ state 4×800-meter team that finished eighth (11:00.98, along with teammates Moiles, Wyllie and Keefe). Ocean also finished fourth in the KVAC Class B mile (5:49.60).

Parker finished ninth in the state shot put (38-10.75). He also finished first in the KVAC Class B senior division shot put (40-7.5).

Picard finished first in the KVAC Class B junior division shot put (27-2).

Spear finished 20th in the state 200 meters (25.18). He also was on the Tigers’ 4×200-meter relay that finished 21st (1:50.05, with teammates T.J. Dodge, Young and Anthony Massicotte). In the KVAC Class B senior division 200 meters, Spear finished fifth (25.36).

Wessels finished 10th in the state mile (6:04.88). She also finished sixth in the KVAC Class B mile (5:54.87). In the KVAC Class B two-mile event, she was fifth (12:06.08).

Widzgowski finished fifth in the state mile (4:36.52) and fourth in the 800 meters (2:04.3). He won the KVAC Class B 800 meters (2:06.6). He also finished second in the KVAC Class B mile (4:37.23).

Young finished 10th in the state shot put (38-7.5). He also was on the Tigers’ 4×200-meter relay that finished 21st (1:50.05, with teammates T.J. Dodge, Spear and Massicotte). In the KVAC Class B senior division shot put, Young finished second (39-6.5).

VillageSoup sports staff can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail at sports@villagesoup.com.