The Midcoast high school coaching carousel has spun this spring, with a handful of new faces — and a few familiar ones — entering the fray of varsity athletics.

Oceanside has three new varsity head coaches, including Katie Nicholls for softball, Kate Marchessault for boys tennis and Glenn Griffin for girls tennis.

Additionally, Noah Capetta has returned to lead the Camden Hills boys tennis team, while Jasmine Fowler will coach the Belfast outdoor track-and-field squads, Mike Savage will assume the reins for the Mount View softball team and Dara Economy the Medomak Valley girls tennis squad.

The following is a summary of the new area varsity coaches:

Oceanside softball

The Mariners will be guided by Katie Nicholls, who steps in for Wes Drinkwater, who guided the program two years.

The 38-year-old Nicholls has taught social studies, psychology, sociology, government and economics at Oceanside High School since 2013 and previously coached Lincoln Academy of Newcastle softball team three seasons, earning a conference coach of the year nod in 2010.

Katie Nicholls. Photo courtesy of Katie Nicholls

“I’m very excited,” said Nicholls. “I have a lot of the girls in classes and often see them and talk about softball and have through the years. I just saw this as an opportunity to do something I love. My youngest kid just turned three and now I think I’m getting the itch back.”

She also is a 2002 graduate of Erskine Academy of South China and, then as Katie Mainville, was the starting pitcher on three straight regional championship softball teams and led her team to the state Class B title — a 5-2 win over Maranacook of Readfield — in 2000.

Nicholls also is one of two players in school history to have her number retired.

She went on to pitch at the University of Southern Maine and has been inducted into the USM sports Hall of Fame, where she holds the majority of that school’s softball pitching records. She graduated in 2006 with a degree in history and returned to get her master’s degree in education in 2013. She also previously was the pitching coach for two years at Colby College in Waterville.

While it has been more than a decade since she officially coached, she has helped develop many talented pitchers in the area through that time, primarily through clinics at The PITCH in Warren. She also has coached youth softball in the Medomak Valley Little League.

She will be assisted by Chloe Jones, who two years prior pitched for Oceanside and racked up nearly 500 career strikeouts over three seasons.

Needless to say, there is a bevy of pitching experience on the Mariner bench this year.

“I feel like we have a lot of potential,” Nicholls said. “And hopefully we live up to that. And my goal is to get more wins.”

Nicholls lives in Waldoboro with her husband, Stefan, and three children.

Oceanside boys tennis

The Mariner boys tennis team will be coached by Katie Marchessault of Thomaston. The 42-year-old replaces Joanna Hall, who coached the boys program nearly a decade before stepping down at the end of last year.

Marchessault, by her own admission, is not much of a coach. She has coached sports at the youth level for a couple of seasons in the past when her children were in those programs. She also admits to having little tennis experience.

But with the start of practices recently on the horizon, OHS still was without a coach, so Marchessault, whose son Brady is a senior on the team, answered the call.

Katie Marchessault. Photo courtesy of Katie Marchessault

“He asked me to do it,” said Marchessault. “It’s his senior year and if they couldn’t find a coach they weren’t going to have a team. It came down to the last week and no one would commit so they asked me if I would do it.”

Marchessault is a 1998 Camden-Rockport High School graduate and did not play sports with the Windjammers, but shot rifles competitively with a local gun club.

She went on to attend Husson University in Bangor and graduated in 2003 with a degree in physical therapy and also played volleyball four years with the Eagles.

Marchessault said she has reached out to Midcoast Recreation Center about getting her team, which will feature a bevy of first-year players, lessons. She also plans to take a coaching lesson at MRC “where they will help us out with things to focus on coaching-wise.”

She said this will be a one-year position for her and hopes she can help build a foundation with the younger players to move forward with a more experienced coach in 2023.

“My goal is just to foster a love of tennis with these boys, have a good season, have fun and work on skills and commitment,” she said.

She lives in Thomaston with her husband, David, and children, Brady and Alayna.

Mount View softball

The Mustangs will be guided by Mike Savage, who takes over for Mark Bennett, who led the Thorndike-based diamond squad six seasons.

The 42-year-old Savage, a 1997 graduate of Kents Hill High School, has a bevy of subvarsity and assistant experience coaching basketball, baseball and/or softball at Piscataquis Community of Guilford, John Bapst Memorial High School of Bangor and, most recently, at Belfast Area High School.

Mike Savage, right, with players, from left, Alexa Coffin, Maddie Roux and Hannah Coolen. Photo courtesy of Mike Savage

As the assistant varsity boys basketball coach at BAHS this season, he did get one varsity head coaching win when head coach Carroll David Harris was out with an illness.

Savage, who lives in Belfast, graduated from Thomas College in 2002 with a degree in finance and economics.

Savage heard of the position through Bennett and also was encouraged to apply by Mount View baseball coach Brandon Hurd and Mustang soccer and basketball coach Jeremy Von Oesen.

“It’s a good opportunity,” he said. “I’m friends with Brandon and he started texting me and I’m friends with Jeremy and he started writing me as well. And it kind of got those juices flowing.”

Camden Hills boys tennis

The Windjammer boys tennis team will be in good hands again as Noah Capetta, who led the squad for five seasons 2014-2018, has returned as the school’s head coach.

Capetta replaces Jesse Simko, who led the team three years. Simko, who is close friends with Capetta, said he was happy to step aside as coach as his responsibilities as rink manager at Midcoast Recreation Center in Rockport continue to grow.

During his time as Windjammer coach, Capetta led the team to five regional championships in five years, 72-7 record and two state Class B championships.

Noah Capetta. Photo courtesy of Noah Capetta

The Windjammers also won the regional championship last year in Class A before falling to Kennebunk in the state final.

Capetta departed in the spring of 2019 as his wife accepted a job in the Cayman Islands. However, circumstances brought the family back to the Pine Tree State a few years later.

“We were kind of marooned on the island for a year and a half with COVID-19,” he said. “Which was not a bad thing. If you could pick anywhere in the world to be quarantined you’d probably pick the Cayman Islands.”

“We had this beautiful, Caribbean beach almost all to ourselves for like a year and half.”

Then, they returned to Maine, where they had been renting their former house, for a two-week vacation last summer.

“We had no intention of staying,” he said. “But then when we arrived my wife decided to resign from her job. And we just stayed. We didn’t even go back. We had the rest of our stuff shipped back. It was wild, but it was a fun adventure.”

Capetta graduated from Hermon High School in 2o02 and was a longtime basketball and baseball player, but opted to give tennis a try his sophomore year.

Ultimately, he parlayed that into a career of playing, coaching and instructing tennis at various levels.

He began working at a tennis club in the Bangor area, was an assistant tennis coach at Hermon a year or two removed from playing for the Hawks and later began to instruct tennis at various places, including Apex Racket in Portland and later Midcoast Recreation Center in Rockport before he continued to teach private lessons in the Cayman Islands the past few years.

Capetta had back surgery while he was in the Cayman Islands and has been continuing to rehab, but does not anticipate it will interfere with his ability to coach.

“I’m looking forward to establishing new relationships and building a team this year,” he said.

“I only know four or five kids on the team. It’s three years I’ve been out, so a while, new slate of players are coming up. We’ll see what we’ve got. I think we’ll still be pretty competitive.”

Belfast track and field

This season, the Lions will be led by Jasmine Fowler, who replaces longtime, legendary coach Dale Nealey, who retired after 33 years and four state Class B championships.

The 43-year-old Fowler, who also is the head coach of the indoor track team, is a 1997 graduate of Coe-Brown Northwood Academy in Northwood, N.H., where she was an integral part of the schools outdoor track team since its infancy.

“I am super excited,” she said. “We just had our first [weeks] of practice and it’s so much fun. We have a great group of coaches and I think that’s going to make a big difference.”

“They started a track club my freshman year,” she said of Coe-Brown Northwood Academy. “Which I decided to try out instead of softball. I loved it. It was a lot of fun and ended up placing at states, this little three-day track program without a track. We ended up having an official team by my sophomore year and I was a three-time, 400-meter state champion. And our team won states two years in a row.”

Jasmine Fowler. Photo courtesy of Jasmine Fowler

She graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2001 with a degree in family studies and is an early childhood educator. She also coached the Troy Howard track-and-field team for three years, two of which played out due to the season being canceled due to COVID-19 in 2020.

Fowler said her Lions’ team is in the midst of largely conditioning for the first two weeks of practices before “shifting to building more intensity and a little less volume.”

Nealey has volunteered to coach the pole vaulters, but Fowler said he plans to be largely hands-off.

“It’s going to be a whole different thing,” Fowler said. “He’s an institution. He’s remarkable. And the amount of knowledge he has is [overwhelming]. Of course someone told me, ‘He didn’t have that knowledge the first year he coached’ and that’s a little bit comforting.”

“We’re going to emphasize having lots of different hands on deck, lots of different minds and people working. We will have strength in numbers.”

Fowler, who also is planning to run the Boston Marathon, resides in Morrill with her husband, Rob, and three children.

Medomak Valley girls tennis

This season, the Panthers will be led by Dara Economy, who replaces longtime coach Marcia Robbins.

The 25-year-old Economy is a mathematics teacher at MVHS.

“I am very excited to be coaching,” she said. “I love contributing to the community and working with teens. I enjoy playing sports as well as watching and supporting the local teams. I have Panther Pride and am excited to be representing MVHS.”

Dara Economy. Photo courtesy of Dara Economy

Economy graduated from Shead High School in Eastport in 2014 and was a four-year soccer, basketball and softball player. She later attended the University of Maine at Machias and continued playing soccer, where her team “competed in the national tournament in North Carolina [my sophomore year], where we placed seventh in the nation.”

She graduated in 2018 with a degree in secondary education, with a concentration in mathematics and a minor in coaching. She also was the varsity head coach of the Washington Academy of East Machias softball one year before moving to the Midcoast.

“I have played tennis recreationally and am looking forward to coaching it competitively,” she said. “I am confident in my players and look forward to improving their skills and watching their progress.”

Oceanside girls tennis

The Mariners will be led by Glenn Griffin, who takes over for Allison Heath, who guided the team one season.

Griffin is a 1993 Medomak Valley High School graduate, where he played baseball and basketball with the Panthers. He later graduated from Husson University of Bangor with a degree in communications in 1995.

Glenn Griffin. Photo courtesy of Glenn Griffin

The 46-year-old Griffin said: “I’ve coached youth sports, including baseball and basketball most of my adult life,” including a bevy of area travel basketball teams in recent years.

“I’m extremely excited about coaching girls tennis at Oceanside as my daughter is a sophomore and played well as a freshman last year and she looks to be a top player for us this year,” said Griffin. “I love coaching/mentoring youth sports and will bring a positive passion to the game each day.”

He resides in Owls Head with his wife, Jen, four children and two cats.