Northern edition Coaches of the Year

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Coach of the year is always a very difficult award to bestow. There are so many devoted and excellent candidates 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.

Spring 2011 Northern Edition Coach of the Year—Boys’ Team

BOB MCCULLY—FALMOUTH TENNIS

Bob McCully has overseen an elite boys’ tennis program for four decades. He’s been in the athletic limelight even longer.

This spring, Falmouth found itself back on top of Class B, winning a third championship in six seasons. McCully steered the Yachtsmen back to the top of the heap, mixing and matching his talented corps to produce an optimal and undefeated result.

For his sustained excellence and the wonderful job he did this spring with yet another elite squad, Bob McCully is The Forecaster’s choice for our Spring 2011 Northern edition Coach of the Year, of a boys’ team.

McCully has a rich athletic background. He grew up in New York state, where he played football and basketball and also was a sprinter and jumper in track. He went on to play basketball at St. Bonaventure before earning his Masters at the University of Maine. After spending five years teaching and coaching back at St. Bonaventure and earning a second Masters at the University of New Hampshire, McCully made his way to Falmouth in 1971 and began teaching math and coaching boys’ tennis.

He’s won hundreds of matches, as well as three Class C and three Class B state championships.

This year, he returned a group of solid seniors and sophomores and mixed in two freshmen. Falmouth would have no peer and capped the season with a 5-0 victory over Ellsworth in the state final, joining the girls’ squad as the best team in Class B.

“I have kids that like tennis,” said McCully. “The continuity to the program helps.”

McCully, a Portland resident, is still an active player and credits playing handball for his success in basketball and tennis. He plans to retire from teaching after the upcoming school year, but hopes to continue coaching (he also directs the middle school basketball and tennis programs).

That’s good news for all who appreciate the sport. Bob McCully, our Spring 2011 Northern edition boys’ team Coach of the Year, continues to push all of the right buttons.

2010 winner: Marc Halsted (Yarmouth baseball)

2009 winner: Mike LeBel (Falmouth lacrosse)

2008 winner: Casey Abbott (Greely lacrosse)

2007 winner: Derek Soule (Greely baseball)

2006 winner: Chris Carpentier (Freeport lacrosse)

2005 winner: Chris Mazzurco (NYA track)

2004 winner: Craig Curry (Yarmouth lacrosse)

2003 winner: Bruce Poliquin (NYA baseball)

2002 winner: Hank Ogilby (Freeport baseball)

Spring 2011 Northern Edition Coach of the Year—Girls’ Team

SARA DIMICK—GREELY LACROSSE

The Greely girls’ lacrosse program won just one game in 2010 and longtime coach Peter Wiles said goodbye to the program, giving way to former Rangers standout Sara Dimick.

This spring, Greely returned to prominence, upsetting a defending state champion, making the playoffs, then taking a perennial power down to the wire in a playoff thriller before bowing out.

Along the way, a young team learned to believe in itself and eventually restored the pride in one of the state’s most respected programs.

Much of the credit has to go to the first-year coach, who’s managed to be just as superb in that role as she was as player not too many years ago.

For embracing the challenge of resurrecting her alma mater and for delivering more quickly and more impressively than anyone could have imagined, Sara Dimick gets The Forecaster’s nod for our Spring 2011 Northern edition Coach of the Year, of a girls’ team.

Dimick was a three-sport standout at Greely (Class of 2004), leading the field hockey team to greatness (and its only championship to date) in the fall, sprinting for an always-strong indoor track team in the winter and excelling on the lacrosse field in the spring (she was Greely’s 2003 Spring Female Athlete of the Year and is the first person in the 10-year history of our postseason awards to be named Athlete of the Year and Coach of the Year).

Dimick went on to Wheaton College, where she played field hockey and lacrosse and got a degree in education.

After graduation, Dimick began teaching and coaching in Freeport (she’s entering her fourth season as the Falcons’ varsity field hockey coach). After spending 2010 with Wiles as an assistant, Dimick took over Greely’s girls’ lacrosse team and quickly turned things around.

The Rangers lost two of their first three games, then stunned defending Class B champion NYA in overtime to eclipse last year’s win total. A three-game win streak late in the year guaranteed a .500 campaign and clinched a playoff spot. Greely would face longtime nemesis Waynflete (which ended three of Dimick’s four high school seasons) in the semifinals. The Rangers had lost, 22-11, to the Flyers in the regular season, but in a dramatic demonstration of how far they’d come, stuck with Waynflete for 50 minutes and only went down to a one-goal defeat when a last-second shot went wide.

“I tried to build chemistry and camaraderie,’ Dimick said. “We had strong leadership and good attitudes and a drive to do well. The NYA win made us turn the corner. We had composure at the end. We left it all on the field against Waynflete.”

With several starters returning in 2012, it appears as if Greely is in line for a long-term resurgence behind a coach who figures to be in place for quite awhile.

“I always wanted to coach,” Dimick said. “I really enjoy the high school level.”

That’s good news not only in Cumberland and North Yarmouth, but also throughout the local girls’ lacrosse world. Sara Dimick, our Spring 2011 Northern edition girls’ team Coach of the Year, has already made quite a mark in her sport and figures to only enjoy more triumph as time goes on.

2010 winner: Julia Sterling (NYA lacrosse)

2009 winner: Sandra Stone (Falmouth tennis)

2008 winner; Julia Littlefield (NYA lacrosse)

2007 winner: Robin Haley (Falmouth lacrosse)

2006 winner: Dorothy Holt (Yarmouth lacrosse)

2005 winner: Sandra Stone (Falmouth tennis)

2004 winner: Ann Harradon (Yarmouth tennis)

2003 winner: Julia Seely (NYA tennis)

2002 winner: Julia Littlefield (Yarmouth lacrosse)

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McCully

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Sports Editor of The Forecaster since 2001. Find detailed game stories at theforecaster.net. I tweet prodigiously at @foresports.