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Courier Publication/VillageSoup honor

Hansen top Midcoast male athlete for 2018-19

Belfast Lion stars in football, track and field
By Mark Haskell | Nov 30, 2019
Courtesy of: Jack Hansen Jack Hansen.

Belfast — As far as the 2018-19 school year goes, little, if anything, could stop Belfast Area High School junior Jack Hansen.

Whether it was eluding defenders on the gridiron, or launching himself to new heights in either indoor or outdoor track, Hansen proved the standard to which all others were measured athletically as he emerged from a group of four other worthy candidates to nab the Courier Publications/VillageSoup schoolboy athlete-of-the-year honor.

Hansen, now a senior at BAHS, beat out Medomak Valley’s Eli Miller and Ryan Creamer, Oceanside’s Ben Ripley and Searsport’s Charlie Spiegel to earn the honor.

“It is a great honor only being a junior and receiving this award,” said Hansen. “It just feels like time has passed really fast and this is just adding on to all of my achievements.”

Last year, Hansen was a Class C Big 11 all-conference selection in football as he made 14 catches for 496 yards and five touchdowns, while he also made 25 tackles, 13 assists and two interceptions at defensive back.

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.

Of note, Hansen suffered an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury midway through his senior year of football and will miss a significant portion — if not the remainder of — his 2019-20 athletic seasons.

The following is a series of questions asked of Hansen on a myriad of topics:

Name: Jack Maxwell Hansen.

Age: 17.

Grade: Senior at Belfast Area High School.

Parents: Mark Hansen and Jodi Stout.

Town: Northport.

Favorite athlete: Armand “Mondo” Duplantis.

Favorite personal moment in sports: Winning the long jump at states freshman year.

Favorite course in school: Physical education (gym).

TV show you never miss: "Dexter" and "The Blacklist."

Favorite phone app: Snapchat.

What do you listen to on your iPod before competing: Music to get me going, some rap or some good beats.

Favorite movie: "Real Steel."

Food you pig out on: Gummy bears, especially during meet days.

Hobbies: Fishing, photography, driving around and playing my Xbox.

Vehicle you wish you were driving: Tesla.

Most influential person in your life: My mom.

Future plans: To do well in sports and graduate college.

Q – What was it that first drew you to sports? Were your parents big sports people? Friends? Brothers? Or did you find your way to sports on your own?

A – Growing up with three older brothers always led me to be active. Growing up I would wait for the bus inside and as soon as I saw it I would race to beat it to the end of the driveway. I was always very energetic.

Q – When you were younger, did you try other sports that you don’t play now?

A – I did wrestling when I was younger up until seventh grade is when I stopped. I knew that I wanted to do indoor track at the high school [level] and wrestling was very tough. I played basketball in eighth grade just for fun and to be with my friends. I’ve played football since the third grade and always loved the sport. I played quarterback forever and ran it to the outside very frequently, knowing I was one of the fastest. I realized I was good at track in seventh grade when they brought it back to the school. I tried most all of the events and was drawn toward the jumps. Eighth grade I won all of my events and jumped close to 20 feet [in the long jump], so I knew that I had a gift.

Q - Why was winning the long jump at states freshman year your favorite of all the personal moments you've had over the past three years? Because it was the first? Was the competition particularly difficult? Did you beat a favorite in the field? Why that over all the others?

A - That was my goal from indoor [where I finished second in the states]. I thought it would be pretty crazy as a freshman to win states with tough competition. I knew if I won as a freshman, that I would be able to do very well in my high school track career. And the fact that I only won by around an inch or so made it even better. I became friends with all of the upperclassmen that did long jump through the state. It was just fun and a friendly experience that I’ll remember for the rest of my life, and it was my first so that’s part of it.

Q – Which of those two sports would you said is your sport of choice?

A - Track is very fun, but the bond that I make with my teammates and the lessons you learn from football are lifelong. I enjoy the sport in every way, the summer workouts, 7versus7, double sessions, the "physicality” you have to bring to game days, [so] I would say I prefer football.

Q – An injury ended your football season early this year, and probably going to prevent you from down track as well. After having so much success, how difficult has this been for you to come to grips with?

A - It’s very saddening knowing that my senior year of sports is mostly done for. Going out playing the sport I love made it easier to accept. Things happen for a reason. I was sad to let my team down knowing that we finally had a chance to go far with the players we had. I am recovering from the surgery now, of my torn ACL and meniscus. My goal was to win seven more state titles this year with indoor and outdoor, now my goal is to make it on the track this outdoor season.

Q – Do you remember how it happened?

A - We were playing Oceanside at Oceanside. I was having a good game, nice long pass, tackle that most likely saved the game. On the 43rd play I go out for a pass, three step slant and catch the ball. I see a defender in front of me so I go to make a move, I plant with my right leg and it just gives way and buckles in. I thought I was going to look down and see my leg completely broken and sideways. This was the most pain I’ve ever been in, I can hardly walk on it trying to get off the field.

Q – Would you rather score a touchdown on the field, or break a personal record in track?

A – Touchdown on the field, there’s no other feeling like running down the field, catching the ball on a deep streak and hearing the crowd roar. I make it in the end zone and all of my teammates are so happy, coach is happy, I’m happy. I just love it.

Q - Can you tell me something about yourself that would maybe surprise some people?

A - I have an eye for photography. I’ve had a camera since freshman year and love taking pictures. I like taking pictures of the ocean and pretty skies. I enjoy driving around and stopping whenever I see something I’d like to take a picture of.

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