February 6, 2013

HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS: Local athletes sign Letters of Intent

By Travis Lazarczyk tlazarczyk@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

For a few years, one of Spencer Carey's goals was to play Division I college football.

"I'm excited to face a new level of competition and hopefully hold my own," Carey, a senior at Lawrence High School, said.

Carey made his decision a couple of weeks ago, but Wednesday morning he made it official. Carey will play college football at the University of Maine.

"When I went up there for a visit, I loved the atmosphere," Carey, a semifinalist for the Fitzpatrick Trophy this past season, said. "It seemed like the right fit for me."

"From his junior year on, Spencer's really been focused on competing at a high level," Lawrence football coach John Hersom said. "You can definitely see and tell he wanted as much competition as he could get."

A three-year starter at quarterback and safety for Lawrence, Carey said he expects to play strong safety for the Black Bears.

Carey was just one of many central Maine athletes who finalized college plans on Wednesday, the first day athletes can sign a National Letter of Intent. At the Alfond Youth Center in Waterville, members of the Maine Majestix field hockey team celebrated seven team members who signed letters of intent Wednesday evening.

Each was decked out in the gear of her chosen school and each sat in front of balloons representing her college's colors.

"We all knew from the beginning we'd all play in college, but I don't think we knew we'd all play Division I," Kristy Bernatchez said. A Messalonskee senior and Miss Maine Field Hockey, Bernatchez will play at the University of North Carolina.

One of UNC's opponents next season is Appalachian State, which is where Lynnae Luettich, Bernatchez's Messalonskee teammate, will continue her field hockey career.

"Kristy and I have played together since second grade," Luettich said.

She described her decision to attend Appalachian State, in Boone, N.C., as fate. Luettich's family moved to Maine from Georgia when she was a small child, and her mother, Amy, wanted to move back south.

"She had property picked out in Boone, N.C., actually," Luettich said.

Skowhegan field hockey players Sarah Finnemore and A.J. Martineau will play at Harvard and Maine, respectively. Finnemore said she chose Harvard for academics and was pleased she'll be able to continue her field hockey career in the Ivy League.

"Harvard has been my dream school," Finnemore said.

Maya Bently of Kents Hill will play field hockey at Saint Louis University. Libby Kain of Dexter will play field hockey at UMass-Lowell, while Elise Tilton of John Bapst rounded out the Majestix group and will play at Penn.

Winslow's Alliyah Veilleux, one of the top sprinters in the state, will continue her track and field career at the College of the Holy Cross.

Waterville cross country standout Bethanie Brown will attend the University of Connecticut. Brown won the New England titles in the 1,600-meter run and 3,200 last spring. In winning the Class B cross country state title last fall, Brown posted the fastest time in the state, 17:56. Brown will make her commitment to UConn official on Friday, Waterville track and field coach Ian Wilson said.

Travis Lazarczyk -- 861-9242

tlazarczyk@centralmaine.com

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