After a strange year marred with lost athletic events and shortened/altered seasons due to the pandemic, the 2020-21 high school sports year was one to remember.

And, it will be remembered in particular for two area athletes from Waldo County, who have been selected — from a pair of impressive lists — by the Courier Publications/VillageSoup sports staff as the best of the best for 2020-21.

Makenzie Alley

Mount View High School’s Draedyn Furrow and Searsport District High School’s Makenzie Alley have been chosen as the media organization’s schoolboy and schoolgirl athletes of the year.

Furrow was chosen from five finalists, who included Belfast Area High School’s Jason Bartlett, Camden Hills Regional High School’s Levi Guay and Charlie Spiegel and Mount View High School’s Noah Hurd.

Alley was chosen from the girls group, which included Mount View’s Hannah Coolen, Belfast’s Lillie Mitchell and Lia Frazee and Medomak Valley High School’s Abby Lash.

Students from Oceanside High School of Rockland, 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 eligible for athlete-of-year honors.

Furrow, now a senior (he was chosen for his performances as a junior), is a three-sport athlete for Mount View and plays soccer, basketball and baseball for the Mustangs.

Alley, a 2021 SDHS graduate (she was chosen for her performances as a senior), was a three-sport athlete for Searsport and played soccer, basketball and softball for the Vikings.

Draedyn Furrow

The 2020-21 selection process, as difficult and challenging as always when one compares unique, multi-talented student-athletes from different schools/classifications, proved to be the most unconventional on record, as many, but not all, schools opting out of particular sports — either by choice or by mandate from the Maine Principals’ Association — in the fall and winter seasons.

More extensive stories on Furrow and Alley will appear later.

Courier Publications and VillageSoup has spotlighted athletes of the year since the 1991-92 high school sports season. For years, only athletes from Knox and Lincoln counties were eligible before the award expanded to Waldo County for the 2009-10 school year.

Previous athlete-of-the-year honorees included:

2019-20: Camden Hills’ Kristina Kelly and Medomak Valley’s Erik Benner.

2018-19: Belfast’s Jack Hansen and Junne Robertson-McIntire.

2017-18: Oceanside’s Mike Norton Jr. and Medomak Valley’s Gabby DePatsy.

2016-17: Belfast’s Kylie Nelson and Searsport’s Barrett Grant.

2015-16: Oceanside’s Nick Mazurek and Belfast’s Kylie Nelson.

2014-15: Belfast’s Steven Davis and Searsport’s Brittany Ward.

2013-14: Oceanside’s Nick Mazurek and Belfast’s Ashley Littlefield.

2012-13: Oceanside’s Kennadi Grover and Belfast’s Peter Kelley.

2011-12: Medomak Valley’s Alanna Vose and Belfast’s Jake Campbell.

2010-11: Mount View’s Hayleigh Kein and Camden Hills’ Jacob Powers.

2009-10: Camden Hills’ Lianne McCluskey and Belfast’s Jack Davis.

2008-09: Rockland’s Baillie Boggs and Camden Hills’ Kiefer Lammi.

2007-08: Georges Valley’s Ashley Geel and Rockland’s Andrew Weiss.

2006-07: Georges Valley’s Ashley Geel and Camden Hills’ Miles Davee.

2005-06: Rockland’s Caitlin Hynes and Ben Baudanza-Sturks.

2004-05: Rockland’s Caitlin Hynes and Wade Oliver.

2003-04: Georges Valley’s Rachel Campbell and A.J. Staples.

2002-03: Rockland’s Caitlin Grant and Mike Curtis.

2001-02: Medomak Valley’s Laura Briggs and Georges Valley’s Travis Magnusson.

2000-01: Camden Hills’ Rebecca Stein and Georges Valley’s Travis Magnusson.

1999-00: Camden-Rockport’s Deedra Beveridge and Mike MacDonald.

1998-99: Camden-Rockport’s Sarah Dailey and Mike MacDonald.

1997-98: Camden-Rockport’s Anna Sommo and Camden Rockport’s Jon Moro and Rockland’s Travis Reynolds (co-boys winners).

1996-97: Medomak Valley’s Alice Bishop and Camden-Rockport’s Jon Moro.

1995-96: Medomak Valley’s Alice Bishop and Camden-Rockport’s Ian Sady.

1994-95: Camden-Rockport’s Johanna Babb and Medomak Valley’s Josh Nash.

1993-94: Rockland’s Paula Reed and Camden-Rockport’s Corey Staples.

1992-93: Camden-Rockport’s Jill Young and Medomak Valley’s Tyler Lupien.

1991-92: Georges Valley’s Christine Rackliff and Medomak Valley’s Harold Anderson.

Courier Publications/VillageSoup sports staff can be reached by email at sports@villagesoup.com.