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Southern edition Coaches of the Year

Winter Athletes of the Year

Southern edition Coaches of the Year

Coach of the Year is another very difficult award to bestow. There are so many devoted and excellent ones out there.

These awards were not necessarily awarded to a man and a woman, but to the top coach of a boys’ team and the top coach of a girls’ team.

Winter 2011-12 Southern edition Coach of the Year-Boys' Team

DEREK VEILLEUX, SCARBOROUGH INDOOR TRACK

Scarborough's indoor track dynasty continued on its merry way this winter as the girls' team won Class A for the eighth year in a row, while the boys' squad has now won two out of three.

This year, things didn't come quite as easily for the Red Storm, as they had to rally in the last event to eke out a one-point decision over Deering. In a total team effort, Scarborough got the job done and much of the credit has to go to coach Derek Veilleux.

Veilleux isn't just an excellent coach of a top-notch program. He's also one of the sport's biggest proponents. In light of the job he's done with the program and how dramatic this championship season was, Derek Veilleux is The Forecaster's choice for our Winter 2011-12 Southern edition Coach of the Year, of a boys' team.

Veilleux was also honored in 2009.

Veilleux grew up in Fairfield and was a running specialist at Lawrence High School. He also ran at the University of Southern Maine. He got into coaching in 2001 with the Scarborough recreation program. He served as an indoor assistant for two years, then became head coach for the 2003-04 season. Ever since, the Red Storm have been at or near the top of Class A.

This year's team lacked the big name scorers of years past, but Veilleux and his assistants were able to develop the roster to the point that Scarborough's depth proved to be too much to overcome.

The Red Storm needed a little luck too and got it at states when, on the 800 relay, the final event of the day, it needed to win and get a Deering disqualification and got exactly that.

Veilleux also coaches the Scarborough outdoor track team and Cape Elizabeth's boys' cross country squad.

Expect the good times to continue in Scarborough. There's no shortage of talent in place and with the program under the guidance of Veilleux, our Winter boys' team Coach of the Year, additional hardware figures to follow.

2010-11 winner: Jim Ray (Cape Elizabeth basketball)

2009-10 winner: Joe Robinson (South Portland hockey)

2008-09 winner: Derek Veilleux (Scarborough track)

2007-08 winner: Phil Conley (South Portland basketball).

2006-07 winner: Tony DiBiase (South Portland basketball)

2005-06 winner: Jay Mazur (Scarborough hockey)

2004-05 winner: Jason Tremblay (Cape Elizabeth hockey)

2003-04 winner: Jim Ray (Cape Elizabeth basketball)

2002-03 winner: Matt Townsend (Scarborough basketball)

2001-02 winner: Paul Brogan (South Portland indoor track)

Winter 2011-12 Southern edition Coach of the Year -Girls' Team

TOM MAINES, SCARBOROUGH BASKETBALL

To rebound from a six-win season, the Scarborough girls' basketball program needed a magic touch.

The Red Storm went out and got it, in the form of a magician in a red coat, otherwise known as one of the state's coaching legends, Tom Maines.

Maines, who had almost no experience coaching girls, came to town and led Scarborough to 17 regular season victories and a pair of come-from-behind playoff triumphs before the run finally ended in the regional final.

Maines showed that his approach can work any time, anywhere, with any gender as he got the Red Storm to believe and improve until they were one step from the state final. For the masterful job he did this season, Tom Maines is The Forecaster's choice for our Winter 2011-12 Southern edition Coach of the Year, of a girls' team.

Maines attended Erskine Academy and the University of Maine, where he played football, basketball, golf and baseball. He began his teaching and coaching career as a volunteer assistant at Cony in 1968. He coached at Unity, Noble, Mexico (where he took the boys' basketball team to the Western Maine Final) and Waterville (where he won the program's first tournament game in 16 years) before spending a dozen years at Morse, leading the Shipbuilders to the Class A state title in 1987, 1988, 1989, a three-year run unrivaled in Maine history. Maines then left coaching and mentored and worked at camps.

In the winter of 2010-11, Maines felt bored and entertained the notion of returning to the bench. After coaching in China last summer, he learned of the Scarborough opening and decided to go for it.

“I had done a clinic with (former Red Storm coach) Jim Seavey last year,” said Maines. “I liked how the girls responded. Scarborough has great facilities. Female athletes here are driven to be the best they can be.”

Another incentive for Maines was being able to hire his wife Rita (who has several years of varsity girls' coaching experience) as an assistant.

Scarborough had won the 2010 Class A state championship in undefeated fashion, but graduation and injury had short-circuited the 2011 season. While the Red Storm was expected to be improved this winter, no one thought it would win its first 11 games (several in dramatic, comeback fashion, foreshadowing what would come in February) or after a loss to McAuley, win the next six.

Scarborough earned the No. 2 seed in Western A, but faced double-digit second half deficits to Cheverus in the quarterfinals and Marshwood in the semis before somehow coming back to win both games in the final minute. The fun ended with a loss to McAuley, but this season was one of unexpected triumph and myriad thrills.

“It was an unexpected and wonderful year,” said Maines, who now has 373 victories in his high school coaching career. “I wasn't sure how the girls would respond, but they had a great attitude. We had 49 practices and I can count on one hand the number of practices I didn't like. We want to stay at the top of the pecking order, but it will be difficult.”

Maines, who considers Ron Kenoyer, Dick Whitmore, Artie Dyer and recently retired Cheverus coach Bob Brown as influences on his coaching, has a simple approach.

“I know the game of basketball,” he said. “I know how I want movement. I want a flow for kids to be able to use anywhere. Read and react.”

Maines, 65, hopes to continue coaching for awhile, joking he'll do it until, “Rita wants to take over.” He lives in Brunswick and has six kids.

Fans of the sport can only hope he sticks around for awhile. Tom Maines, our Winter 2012 girls' Coach of the Year, still has the magic touch.

2010-11 winner: Chris Roberts (Cape Elizabeth basketball)

2009-10 winner: Jim Seavey (Scarborough basketball)

2008-09 winner: Chris Roberts (Cape Elizabeth basketball)

2007-08 winner: Bre Fortiguerra (Scarborough hockey)

2006-07 winner: Ron Kelly (Scarborough Indoor track)

2005-06 winner: Deven Morrill (Cape Elizabeth Nordic skiing)

2004-05 winner: Ron Kelly (Scarborough Indoor track)

2003-04 winner: Mike Giordano (South Portland basketball)

2002-03 winner: Kerry Kertes (Cape Elizabeth swimming)

2001-02 winner: Tim Kipp (Scarborough swimming)

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.