After much deliberation and discussion about the incredible talent, diversity and success of the 10 finalists, a pair of Belfast Lions have risen to the top of a stacked field to be honored as the Courier Publications/VillageSoup 2018-19 high school athletes of the year.

Junne Robertson-McIntire and Jack Hansen — now in their senior years at Belfast Area High School — have been chosen as the top schoolgirl and schoolboy athletes in the Courier Publications/VillageSoup coverage area, which includes nine high school over three Midcoast counties, for the 2018-19 school year.

At the end of each high school calendar year, the Courier Publications/VillageSoup sports department has the arduous task of selecting the best of the best on the male and female side of the Midcoast sports scene.

With many talented nominees throughout Knox, Waldo and part of Lincoln counties, the process is as challenge as 10 male and female semifinalists are selected, and are then whittled to five finalists and,eventually,  two winners.

And, after much consideration and debate about the 10 finalists, the 2018-19 Courier Publications/VillageSoup schoolboy and schoolgirl athletes of the year have been selected.

On the boys side, Hansen was chosen from a talented group of finalists — which included Searsport’s Charlie Spiegel, Oceanside’s Ben Ripley and Medomak Valley’s Ryan Creamer and Eli Miller — as the Courier Publications/VillageSoup schoolboy athlete of the year.

On the girls side, Robertson-McIntire was chosen from an equally talented group of finalists — which included Oceanside’s Abby Veilleux, Camden Hills’ Kassie Krul and Kristina Kelly and Mount View’s Shala Davis.

It is the second year in a row Robertson-McIntire was selected as a finalist for the honor.

The two were selected for their accomplishments as juniors.

For years, the honors were exclusive to student-athletes in Knox and Lincoln counties, but Waldo County student-athletes became eligible for the distinction in 2009-10.

Students from Oceanside High School of Rockland/Thomaston, Camden Hills Regional High School of Rockport, Mount View High School of Thorndike, Belfast Area High School, Medomak Valley High School of Waldoboro, Vinalhaven School, North Haven Community School, Searsport District High School and Islesboro Central School are considered for athlete-of-year honors.

Courier Publications publishes three weekly newspapers, The Courier-Gazette in Rockland, The Camden Herald and The Republican Journal in Belfast. The company also has two websites: and

The athletes of the year will receive a free year's subscription to one of the company’s print newspaper or online websites, in addition to a gift from the Courier Publications/VillageSoup sports department.

Feature stories on Hansen and Robertson-McIntire will appear in future editions of the newspapers and online.

Robertson-McIntire, a junior, was a rare four-sport athlete for Belfast as she participated in soccer, basketball, indoor track and outdoor track and field for the Lions. On the soccer field, Robertson-McIntire was a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B first-team all-conference selection as she finished the campaign with 10 goals and two assists. Coach Brian Beaulieu said she demonstrated a wealth of leadership at center midfield and “did this very well with a very young and inexperienced team.” In indoor and outdoor track, Robertson-McIntire also was a KVAC Class B first team all-conference selection. In indoor track, she collected KVAC Class B titles in the 55 meters and 200 meters, while she finished second in 55 meters and third in the 200 meters at the state Class B championships. In outdoor track, she nabbed KVAC Class B titles in the 100 and 200 meters and went on to win three state Class B titles in the 100 and 200 meters, and as the fourth leg of the 4×100-meter relay team. Robertson-McIntire missed half her team’s basketball games in the winter due to injury.

Hansen, a junior, was a three-sport athlete for Belfast as he participated in football, indoor track and outdoor track and field for the Lions. On the gridiron Hansen, as a wide receiver, was a Class C Big 11 all-conference selection as he hauled in 14 catches for 496 yards and five touchdowns. As a defensive back, he also had 25 solo tackles, 13 assists and two interceptions. In indoor track, Hansen was a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B first-team all-conference selection as he collected conference championships in the 55-meter hurdles, pole vault and long jump, while also going on to win state championships in the pole vault and long jump. In outdoor track, he also was a KVAC first-team all-conference selection and won state Class B titles in the triple jump and pole vault. He was the Class B athlete of the year in indoor and outdoor track.

Courier Publications' sports staff can be reached by email at or by phone at 594-4401.