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Semi-pro basketball

Skaggs first official signee of Sternmen hoop era

Former Washington State University player becomes initial player for Midcoast Sternmen
By Zack Miller | Apr 06, 2021
Photo by: Zack Miller Carter Skaggs.

Warren — When the calendar flipped to April, Carter Skaggs did not know what his next hardwood move would be to continue his competitive basketball career.

Flip the same calendar forward a few days, and the 25-year-old Skaggs officially has inked his next stop, this time with the newly-formed Midcoast Sternmen of the Professional Basketball Association on Tuesday afternoon, April 6, at the Midcoast Athletics Center.

"It’s crazy, because I was sitting in the living room the other day and saw the story [about the team starting] on the news, and I knew nothing about it and saw nothing about it, so I sent a quick message and next thing I know I’m up here working out," said Skaggs. "It’s been a crazy and awesome experience so far."

"We thought when Brad [Galley] bought this franchise that we’d probably get more Division III guys, but to get a Division I guy right out of the chute is really a slam dunk for us," said Sternmen head coach Jim Graffam. "Plus, he was here last weekend and he can really shoot it and run, and has an infectious personality. He’ll be a leader on the team and I know he’s going to be well accepted in the community."

"Two years ago he scored 20 points on UCLA and this year [the Bruins] were a halfcourt shot away from playing for the national championship," said Galley, the president and chief executive officer of the Sternmen. "We are just through the roof because we never thought we’d get a Pac-12 player to sign and play with us."

Skaggs' most recent stop on his basketball career was with Washington State University of Pullman, Wash. where he spent two years as a Cougar from 2017-19, where he averaged seven-point-two points-per-game, and shot 38.6 percent from three in his two years in the Pac-12.

Previous to becoming a Cougar, Skaggs playing for Chipola College of Marianna, Fla., where he averaged 7.7 points-per-game and shot 40.4 percent from beyond the arc in his only season as an Indian.

Before his junior college stop in The Sunshine State, Skaggs called Maine home at Bridgton Academy for the 2015-16 season, when, at the time, he was committed to play basketball for Highpoint University in Highpoint, N.C.

"I had never been to New England before [when I came to Bridgton]," said Skaggs. "I’m kind of an avid outdoorsman, and I really enjoy [Maine]. I think it’s beautiful and very relaxed. The difference between the west and east coasts, from what I tell people, is the west coast is very fast-paced where here it’s a little more relaxed. I really enjoyed Bridgton and everything about it."

Skaggs currently resides in Old Orchard Beach, but is making plans to make the move to the Midcoast with the start of the Sternmen's regular season slated to begin in May.

The 6-foot 5-inch guard is accustomed to playing in front of thousands of fans, as well as on national television, which will not be the case as a Sternmen.

"I always fed off of playing in front of a lot of people and it was always more fun for me at least on the road, where you were going to UCLA, Arizona [University] and [the University of] Washington where it’s sold out with 12,000 to 15,000 people," Skaggs said. "I’m just blessed that this opportunity presented itself and I get a chance to go back and focus on being an athlete and focus on getting back to playing again. Hopefully it will fill a couple of gaps in my basketball resumé that will help me down the road."

"This league is about opportunity," said Graffam. "It’s not about a lot of money. It’s about the next step that we are trying to get you ready for, and he checked them all off, and will probably be our best player. He should have a chance to get a contract and go overseas come September. We are just thrilled that we are able to get this because he will attract other players like him."

Overseas is Skaggs' goal, and he was prepared to head to Europe before the pandemic struck in 2020, to tryout for basketball clubs across the Atlantic, but, for now, is ready to get to work.

"I just turned 25 and I’d like to keep playing until my body says I can’t anymore," Skaggs said. "I'm hopeful to sign with a club in Europe, which is the goal of this opportunity."

Franchise owner Brad Galley, left, Carter Skaggs, middle, and coach Jim Graffam. (Photo by: Zack Miller)
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