The sounds of sneakers squeaking on the hardwood. The sound of the net when the ball goes cleanly through the hoop. Fans screaming with every basket throughout a packed gymnasium. These are just a few of the things experienced throughout the Midcoast this year as it was another strong season for many teams competing throughout the area in high school girls basketball.

And now, many of those student-athletes that worked so hard will be rewarded as VillageSoup unveils its first annual high school girls basketball notables.

The criteria to become a Midcoast notable student-athlete begins with the VillageSoup sports department polling area coaches to provide a list of what they feel are their top players for that season, not necessarily a high school career. In this case, for girls basketball, Belfast’s Amy Dyer-Kelley, Camden Hills’ Jay Carlsen, Mount View’s John Donato, Medomak Valley’s Randy Hooper, Searsport’s Amanda Pullen, Rockland’s Teel Foster, Georges Valley’s Dwight Henry, Vinalhaven’s Lindsay Davis, North Haven’s Roman Cooper and Islesboro’s Will Aldrich were polled for their nominations.

The notables are based on individual performances, although the strength of a team’s season may impact how many players from a specific team are selected.

Athletes had to play in at least half of their team’s regular-season games to be considered for notable status.

This year’s girls basketball notables include Georges Valley’s Kennadi Grover and Jill Bradbury; Belfast’s Caroline Carr and Whitney Cross; Mount View’s Hayleigh Kein and Chrissy Larrabee; Islesboro’s Alana Govoni; Camden Hills’ Maddy Smeaton, Jordan Knowlton, Gab Duke and Taylor Porter; Rockland’s Hannah Sirois and Macy MacArthur; Vinalhaven’s Brooke Conway, Chelsey Moyer, Jennifer Guptill and Amelia Davidson; Medomak Valley’s Alanna Vose, Ericka Christensen and Lindsay Ranquist; North Haven’s Erin Cooper; and Searsport’s Olivia Quigley.

While seniors seem to outnumber the rest of the field, this year’s class has a strong showing of both upperclassmen and underclassmen. The 22 selections include nine seniors, four juniors, five sophomores and four freshmen.

Carr, Guptill, Cross, Conway, Smeaton, Davidson, Duke, Moyer and Quigley are all seniors. Kein, Larrabee, Ranquist and Cooper are juniors. Porter, Bradbury, Vose, Sirois and Christensen are sophomores. Grover, Knowlton, Govoni and MacArthur are freshman.

Belfast, a Class B team competing in the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference, finished the year with a record of 3-15 and 18th out of 19 teams in Eastern Class B. The Lions did not qualify for postseason play.

Camden Hills, a Class B team competing in the KVAC, finished with a record of 14-4, earning the Windjammers the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Class B playoffs. The ‘Jammers were then upended by No. 3 Winlsow in the quarterfinals 39-36.

Georges Valley, a Class C team competing in the Mountain Valley Conference, finished with a record of 8-10 and was 12th out of 18 teams in Western Class C. The Buccaneers did not qualify for postseason play.

Islesboro, which competes in Western Class D, finished with a record of 2-14 and were 16th out of 16 teams in the region. The Eagles did not qualify for postseason play.

Medomak Valley, a Class B team competing in the KVAC, finished with a record of 14-4, earning the Panthers the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Class B playoffs. The Panthers were ousted by No. 4 Nokomis of Newport 46-32 in the quarterfinals.

Mount View, a Class B team competing in the KVAC, finished with a record of 8-10 and was 12th out of 19 teams in Eastern Class B. The Mustangs did not qualify for postseason play.

North Haven, which competes in Western Class D, finished with a record of 8-8 and was ninth out of 16 teams in the region. The Hawks did not qualify for postseason play.

Rockland, a Class B team competing in the KVAC, finished with a record of 0-18 and were 19th out of 19 teams in Eastern Class B. The Tigers did not qualify for postseason play.

Searsport, a Class C team competing in the Penobscot Valley Conference, finished with a record of 3-15 and was 17th out of the 20 teams in Eastern Class C. The Vikings did not qualify for postseason play.

Vinalhaven, a Class D team competing in the East/West Conference, finished with a record of 14-2, earning the Vikings the No. 2 seed in the Western Class D playoffs. The Vikings dispatched No. 7 Seacoast Christian 41-29 in the quarterfinals, before falling to No. 3 Greenville 46-41 in the semifinals.

The following are VillageSoup’s 22 high school girls basketball notables, listed in alphabetical order:

Bradbury, a 5-foot-6-inch forward, had a terrific sophomore season this year for Georges Valley as it appears the Buccaneers are in the midst of a youth movement with both Bradbury and Grover at the core. A nice shooter who can work both inside and out and has a dominant left hand, Bradbury was second on the team in scoring this year with 163 points. She also shot an eye-popping 8-of-9 (89 percent) from beyond the arc and shot nearly 60 percent from the foul line. Bradbury, who also had 97 rebounds, 27 steals and 11 assists this year, can bring the ball up the floor as either a guard or forward.

Carr, a 5-9 center, provided strong senior leadership for a Belfast team that was down on its luck in the win column this season. Carr was second on the team in scoring with 112 points, while also corralling 126 rebounds along with 42 steals and 27 assists. She was second on the team in scoring and seventh in the KVAC in rebounding. Coach Dyer-Kelley added that Carr has a knack at being in the right place at the right time, often allowing her to scoop up offensive rebounds and putting her in position to capitalize on second-chance points.

Christensen, a 6-2 center, was not only the biggest player on the floor for Medomak Valley this season but played big as well. Christensen gave the Panthers a strong offensive and defensive presence in the paint this season and made tremendous strides from last season. Rarely was a shot in the paint from the opposition not contested by Christensen, who averaged 9.8 points per game this season to go along with six boards per contest. Coach Hooper added she is an invaluable member of the team as not only did her height help in the paint, she was often brought out to midcourt to help the Panthers in press-breaking situations. If Christensen can continue to develop her perimeter game in the offseason, Hooper expects another breakout year next season.

Conway, a 5-8 center/forward, was the most consistent player on the floor this season for the Vikings and had a real knack of getting to the hoop during her senior season. A versatile player with the ability to both shoot the midrange jumper or drive to the basket, Conway dumped in 188 total points this season for Vinalhaven while shooting 34 percent from the field. She also pulled down 134 rebounds, made 34 steals, blocked 12 shots and had nine assists. She also forced 13 turnovers. Conway scored 11 points in their Western Class D quarterfinal win over Seacoast Christian and added 10 more in their semifinal loss to Greenville.

Last season, Conway finished with 174 points, 140 rebounds and 26 steals.

Cooper, a 5-2 guard, was the heart and soul of the Hawks this season under the tutelage of father and veteran coach Roman Cooper. Switching to the point guard position this season after playing as the off guard last year, Cooper flourished in her new role and did a nice job of both scoring with and distributing the basketball Cooper scored 232 total points this season (13.3 ppg), while also averaging four assists, three rebounds and three steals per contest. She had a game-high of 28 points this season and also scored 27 in another game and 23 points twice. Coach Cooper added that his daughter worked particularly hard in the offseason, which translated onto the hardwood.

Last season, Cooper scored 145 points in helping the Hawks earn a berth in the Western Class D playoffs.

Cross, a 5-8 guard/forward, is a terrific athlete and showcased that talent on the hardwood this season for Belfast as a senior. Also a notable in soccer this season, Cross thrived as the Lions’ top defender and always guarded the opposition’s top offensive threat and “worked her butt off defensively” to do just that, according to coach Dyer-Kelley. Cross was also a member of the all-academic team this season and netted 108 points, pulled down 72 rebounds and made 21 steals this season for the Lions.

Davidson, a 5-6 guard, proved she could still find the bottom of the hoop with the best of them this season, as her ability to hit outside shots played a large role in Vinalhaven’s 14-win regular season. Davidson was second on the team in scoring this year with 179 points, and also shot an incredible 83 percent from the free-throw line (20-of-24). She also pulled down 56 rebounds and made 23 steals and forced 12 turnovers. Davidson, along with Guptill, were the primary ball-handlers on the team this season and one of the team leaders as a senior.

Last season, Davidson finished the season with 171 total points, 77 rebounds, 26 steals and 20 assists.

Duke, a 5-3 guard, continued to assume the role as floor leader at the point this year for the Windjammers and turned in a stellar showing in her senior season. Duke tossed in 87 points this season for Camden Hills and also had an incredible 50 steals and 44 assists. She also had seven blocks. Coach Carlsen credited Duke as the ‘Jammers top defender, as she always drew the assignment of defending the opposition’s quickest players. She can also handle pressure with relative ease and won a few games at the line this season with her free-throw shooting, where she shot 59 percent for the season.

Govoni, a 5-7 guard, was Islesboro’s most consistent player this season and played a key role in both victories this season for the Eagles. She was one of their top defensive players this season, and was often given the assignment of guarding the other team’s top players. Govoni netted only 50 points this season (3.1 ppg), but pulled down 110 rebounds (6.8 rpg) and had nearly four steals per contest with 54 on the season. Coach Aldrich added that Govoni was the team’s hardest worker and “provided leadership through her actions.”

Grover, a 5-9 forward, broke onto the Midcoast basketball scene in a big way as a freshman this season after helping the Buccaneers win the Class C girls soccer championship as their starting goalie. Grover was dominant this season and appears to be well on her way to being Georges Valley’s next 1,000-point scorer, amassing 279 points through the 18-game regular season. She also corralled 129 rebounds, along with 40 assists, 38 steals and 21 blocks. Grover is capable of playing all five positions, as she could be found bringing the ball up the floor on a full-court press or down low preparing to accept an entry pass. She is also a very accurate shooter with terrific fundamentals.

Grover can also step back and shoot from the outside, shooting 33 percent from beyond the arc. She was also third in the MVC in scoring this season and was named a second-team MVC southern division selection.

Guptill, a 5-4 guard, epitomized what a true point guard means to a team this season according to Vinalhaven coach Lindsay Davis. Guptill proved to be a leader on the floor for the Vikings and did a terrific job in setting up the offense this season. She was also a solid defender and was instrumental in breaking the opposition’s full-court press with ease. She scored 149 total points this season for the Vikings to go along with 54 rebounds, 28 steals and 21 assists. She also shot 59 percent from the free-throw line and scored eight points in a quarterfinal win against Seacoast Christian and 15 more in their semifinal loss to Greenville.

Last season, Guptill netted 133 points, while adding 60 rebounds, 36 steals and 18 assists.

Kein, a 5-7 guard, was a scoring machine this season for the Mount View girls, as she ripped the nets with both consistency and style. Kein, a tremendous all-around athlete and co-captain of this year’s team, dropped in 287 points this season, which was nearly one third of the total points scored by the entire team this year. Kein also averaged 8.1 rebounds per game, 4.4 steals per contest and shot 68 percent from the foul line. Coach Donato added that Kein was the offensive MVP this season for the ‘Stangs, who was second on the team in rebounding and one of the team’s best ball-handlers. She was also named to the KVAC honorable mention team.

Knowlton, a 5-9 forward, was a force this season for Camden Hills as a freshman, helping right the ship for the Windjammers after a down year last season. A versatile player who can play all five positions, Knowlton is a year-round player and is always working on improving all aspects of her game. Knowlton tossed in 241 points this season for the ‘Jammers, and also pulled down 116 rebounds (41 offensive), came up with 50 steals and had 44 assists and seven blocks. Coach Carlsen said that Knowlton has “great court awareness and an instinct you can’t teach.” A strong, athletic player with little downside, Knowlton should give Windjammer fans plenty to cheer about over the next three seasons.

Larrabee, a 5-7 guard, was not only the Mount View’s defensive MVP this season according to coach Donato, but was also the team’s hardest worker. Larrabee was second on the team in scoring with 174 points (9.6 ppg) through 18 games, but also averaged just under eight rebounds per game and just over four steals per contest. Larrabee was also a 64 percent foul shooter, and also had a nose for the ball, which is evident by her defensive prowess.

MacArthur, a 6-0 center, came on strong for the Tigers this season and gave Rockland an interior presence they have not seen in recent memory. MacArthur, who transferred to Rockland from Ohio, had an even 100 points this year to go along with 168 rebounds (9.3 rpg), 28 blocks and 25 steals through 18 games. Her physical and aggressive style of play was a plus for Rockland according to coach Foster, especially on the defensive side of the ball.

Moyer, a 5-8 center, was arguably Vinalhaven’s most consistent player this season and grew as a player by leaps and bounds from last year, according to coach Davis. A strong player in the paint both offensively and defensively, especially given her small stature for the position, Moyer was fourth on the team in scoring this year with 143 points (7.9 ppg) and also led the team in rebounds, pulling down 172 (9.5 rpg). She added 27 assists, 20 steals, 22 forced turnovers and eight blocks. She was also a 60 percent foul shooter and shot 30 percent from the floor.

Moyer had seven points in Vinalhaven’s quarterfinal win over Seacoast Christian and 11 in their semifinal loss to Greenville.

Porter, a 5-5 guard, gave opposing teams fits this season as she proved to be a terrific teammate in the backcourt alongside Duke this season for Camden Hills. A shooting guard with point guard-like tendencies, Porter was second on the team in scoring this season with 202 points and shot nearly 60 percent from the free throw line. She also canned 22 three-pointers this season, proving to be the team’s best shooter. Coach Carlsen added that Porter has “an incredible amount of talent” and has the ability to penetrate and get to the free-throw line when needed. Porter, along with Knowlton, figure to be one of the most potent one-two punches in the Midcoast and perhaps even the KVAC next season.

Quigley, a guard, was an integral part of the Searsport girls basketball team and according to coach Pullen, one of the main reasons the Vikings finally got over the hump this season and won their first game in 57 tries in a losing streak that spanned three seasons. “We would not have made the strides we made this season without her,” said Pullen. Quigley averaged 12 points per contest and led the team in most statistical categories. She was also named to the PVC honorable mention team.

Ranquist, a 5-6 forward, underwent a transition as this season coach Hooper moved her from playing small forward and occasionally guard to primarily a power forward. She took the adjustment in stride, which helped her and the Panthers flourish this season. Ranquist averaged 6.3 points per game this season, 5.9 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 3.8 steals. While her scoring dipped a bit from last season, she improved in all other statistical categories and became a more complete player. Hooper added that her defense in the post improved dramatically as the season went on, and can still step away from the basket and hit shots from the outside when the situation calls for it.

Ranquist scored seven points in Medomak Valley’s quarterfinal loss to Nokomis.

Sirois, a 5-8 forward, played very well for the Tigers this season despite the team coming up empty in the win column. A versatile player who could match up well with most of the players in her conference and could also step out and defend the guard position, Sirois netted 140 points this season while also pulling down 109 rebounds, making 14 steals and blocking 11 shots. Sirois also thrived at taking opponents off the dribble in the paint and also plays well with her back to the basket.

Sirois came on strong at the end of last season as a freshman after being called up from the junior varsity squad and was one of the team’s starters by the end of the season. She was also the team’s leading scorer in a preliminary playoff loss to John Bapst of Bangor.

Smeaton, a 5-10 forward, had a sensational senior season for coach Carlsen and the Windjammers, who said Smeaton is “one of the hardest workers I’ve ever had” in nearly three decades of coaching. Smeaton had her best season in a Windjammer uniform in her final year, scoring 193 points and was one of the top rebounders in the conference with 166 (83 offensive). She also came away with 54 steals, had 24 assists and blocked 12 shots. Smeaton is strong in all facets of the game and leads by example, scoring 11 points in her final game at the Bangor Auditorium in a loss to Winslow.

Last season, Smeaton scored 160 points and pulled down 230 rebounds, while averaging 2.5 steals per contest.

Vose, a 5-6 guard, led the Medomak Valley girls to a 14-4 record this season and provided both a spark offensively and a boost defensively for the Panthers. A polished player that can slash to the basket or shoot from the outside, Vose averaged 12 points per game this season and also averaged three assists and two steals per contest, a big jump from her 4.8 points per game last season. Not only can she score and defend as well as anyone on the team, but has also assumed the leadership role for the Panthers as coach Hooper called her an extension of himself on the floor.

Vose scored a team-high 11 points in Medomak Valley’s quarterfinal loss to Nokomis and had a game-high 22 points earlier in the season at home against Belfast.

Village NetMedia Associate Sports Director Mark Haskell can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail at mhaskell@villagesoup.com.