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Scarborough Winter Athletes of the Year

Sports

Scarborough Winter Athletes of the Year

2008-09 Winter Male Athlete of the Year:
BRAD NAKANISHI, Senior-Indoor track
* Class A state champion, pole vault

Brad Nakanishi and his Scarborough Red Storm boys' indoor track teammates soared to new heights this winter.

While the Red Storm were winning their first Class A state championship, Nakanishi was doing his part, consistently outleaping the opposition in the pole vault.

Nakanishi saved his best for last, winning the individual state crown, to add to his growing legend.

For being so devoted to his craft and for shining under the brightest lights, Brad Nakanishi is The Forecaster's choice for Scarborough's 2008-09 Winter Male Athlete of the Year.

Nakanishi is originally from Ohio, but grew up in Scarborough. He started outdoor track in the eighth grade and by freshman year was adept enough in the pole vault to place sixth at outdoor states with a top leap of 11 feet, 3 inches. As a sophomore, he was fourth (12 feet) indoors. Last year, Nakanishi really elevated, but couldn't beat Brunswick star David Slovenski. Nakanishi was runner-up indoors (13-6) and placed fourth outdoors (13 feet).

This season, he had no rival.

Nakanishi, who also ran cross country in the fall, won the pole vault at the Bowdoin Relays, setting the tone for a season of triumph. Practicing several days a week, while also competing in the hurdles and middle-distance, Nakanishi had a top jump of 14 feet and soared to the state title with a leap of 13-6. He went on to compete at Nationals, and just missed eclipsing the school record of 14-3.

Nakanishi, who is also a member of student council, National Honor Society and Key Club, will now look to continue his dominance outdoors. His ultimate goal is to vault 15 feet. He's still in the process of selecting a college, but knows he wants to pole vault and study engineering.

Look for his success to continue. That's because no matter how high the bar is set, Brad Nakanishi, Scarborough's 2008-09 Winter Male Athlete of the Year, continues to ascend.

Coach Derek Veilleux's comment: "Brad is a leader that everyone looks up to. This was his second year as captain. He's a hard worker. He's a talented, all-around athlete. He's been great for the team. He's very focused. He should succeed at the next level."

2007-08 winner: Chris Hughes (Basketball)
2006-07 winner: Brent Mayo (Hockey)
2005-06 winner: Doug Endrizzi (Swimming)
2004-05 winner: Andrew Rogers (Swimming)
2003-04 winner: Mike Walker (Basketball)
2002-03 winner: Ryan Colpitts (Basketball)
2001-02 winner: Sean Flaherty (Swimming)

2008-09 Winter Female Athlete of the Year
REEGAN BRACKETT, Senior-Basketball
* SMAA All-Conference, honorable mention
* SMAA Senior All-Star
* Maine McDonald's Senior All-Star

The Scarborough girls' basketball team is coming off its finest Class A season ever. Much of the credit for the Red Storm's 17-win campaign, which didn't end until the regional semifinals, has to go to senior point guard Reegan Brackett.

Brackett was content to pass instead of shoot and her efforts can't be quantified. Her skill and the force of her will to win were infectous and helped Scarborough soar to the top of the standings.

In light of her unselfishness, thirst for success and for playing the role of team leader perfectly, Reegan Brackett is The Forecaster's choice as Scarborough's 2008-09 Winter Female Athlete of the Year.

Brackett is the third of three athletic sisters to play sports in Scarborough. She became the varsity point guard upon coach Jim Seavey's arrival her sophomore year. The Red Storm improved from five wins to eight that season, then won 13 times in 2007-08, but couldn't manage to earn a playoff victory.

That all changed this winter.

Brackett wound up second in the Southern Maine Activities Association with over four points per game and had her moments in the scoring column as well. She had nine points in a win at Biddeford, eight in Scarborough's first-ever victory over South Portland, 13 against Noble, 11 versus Thornton Academy, a season-high 19 against Portland, and 15 in a second win over Biddeford.

Through it all, her tenacious desire to excel rubbed off on her teammates and a squad that was expected to be good, but not great, wound up with 16 victories and the No. 2 seed for the playoffs.

In the postseason, the Red Storm routed South Portland in the quarterfinals for their first-ever Class A playoff win. Brackett had six points and set the tone with a couple early assists that gave Scarborough a lead it would never relinquish.

The Red Storm's title dreams would be dashed by Biddeford in the semifinals. Brackett had eight points and had a chance to tie the game at the end, but her 3-pointer was off the mark.

That disappointment was short-lived, however, as Brackett was named to the all-conference team and earned an opportunity to play in the Maine McDonald's Senior All-Star Game, where she had four points.

Brackett, who also played four years of varsity soccer and is gearing up for a fourth year at second base on the softball diamond, is deciding between four or five schools and wants to play basketball or soccer in college. She's planning on studying athletic training.

The Red Storm enjoyed a season to remember this winter and Reegan Brackett, Scarborough's 2008-09 Winter Female Athlete of the Year, was a huge reason why.

Coach Jim Seavey's comment: "Reegan was the backbone of our team. A leader on and off the court. She really grew into a tremendous floor general over the past three years. She's as competitive a player as I've coached. She has great court awareness, is very tenacious and does whatever it takes for her team to be successful."

2007-08 winner: Nicole Harmon (Swimming)
2006-07 winner: Kaitlynn Saldanha (Indoor track)
2005-06 winner: Erica Jesseman (Indoor track)
2004-05 winner: Jenn Flaherty (Swimming)
2003-04 winner: Sarah Mills (Hockey)
2002-03 winner: Jenn Flaherty (Swimming)
2001-02 winner: Mandi Rapisardi (Basketball)

Photo:
Brad Nakanishi

Photo:
Reegan Brackett