Thursday, May 23, 2013
The Carrabec girls basketball team had a new coach last winter, and another new coach when Mike Nelson ran the program this summer.
Another new coach would have been four coaches in less than two calendar years. So Nelson, the assistant principal and athletic director at Carrabec, decided to stay with the program himself.
Nelson’s appointment as Carrabec’s coach became official at the school’s September board meeting.
“I hemmed and hawed,” Nelson said. “But the response I got from the kids and their parents was tremendous. It was a good summer for us.”
Nelson coached the Skowhegan boys from 1991-99, compiling a 115-43 record and winning the Class A state title in 1998. He said his coaching style is based less on designing offensive and defensive patterns than on making players better.
“I’m all about skill development,” he said. “They really took a shine to that.”
With his other duties at the school, Nelson is already busy, but said he is at the school all the time in the winter anyway. Coaching gives him a chance to be more involved in the action.
“It’s awesome,” Nelson said of being back on the sidelines. “I spent about six hours yesterday doing stuff and getting ready. More than anything, you just get to work with kids, and that’s what I like to do.”
The Cobras will host a preseason tournament Dec. 3-4 with Edward Little, Lake Region, Thornton and Winslow.
Gary Hawkins has worked at the Kennebec Journal since 1980. His primary beats are baseball, boys basketball, girls and boys soccer and golf.