LEWISTON, Maine — Alison (Smith) Montgomery enjoyed an outstanding basketball career at Bangor High School and Bowdoin College.

Now, the former Stockton Springs resident is returning to Maine to take her first head coaching job.

Montgomery on Wednesday was named the head women’s basketball coach at Bates College by director of athletics Kevin McHugh.

“I couldn’t be more pleased and excited about Alison taking over the reins of the Bates women’s basketball program,” McHugh said in a news release. “We had an extremely competitive pool of candidates for the position, but Alison was the consensus choice of all involved in the search process.”

Montgomery graduated from Bowdoin in 2005 and has spent the last seven years as an assistant coach, the first three at Bowdoin under head coach Adrienne Shibles and the past four at the U.S. Naval Academy under Stefanie Pemper.

“A NESCAC job in Maine has been kind of my ultimate goal,” Montgomery said. “This process and the job offer has been surreal. I’m thrilled to be at a place like Bates.”

After receiving her master’s degree in social work from Boston College in 2007, Montgomery helped lead the Polar Bears to a 70-18 record over three seasons, including NCAA Sweet Sixteen appearances in both 2010 and 2011.

Montgomery then joined Pemper, her former head coach at Bowdoin, as an assistant with Division I Navy for the 2011–12 campaign. In four seasons there, the Mids compiled a 80-48 record, an 8-2 record in league tournament play and two NCAA tournament appearances.

Last season, Montgomery served as Navy’s recruiting coordinator. She was also responsible for scouting, game planning and team preparation for eight of Navy’s opponents, including film breakdown and analysis, practice planning, game strategizing and generating scouting reports.

Montgomery earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2005 from Bowdoin, where she was a four-year starter and helped the Polar Bears post a 108-9 record, win four NESCAC titles and make four NCAA appearances, including a national runner-up finish in 2004.

The Bangor High School grad is one of three girls basketball players in program history to surpass 1,000 career points.

“I’m really passionate about the state of Maine and all it has to offer,” Montgomery said. “I’m hoping that can be an asset in my recruiting, both in state and out, in terms of how strongly I feel about the area.”

Montgomery replaces Jim Murphy, who retired in April after 21 seasons.

“I was taking a walk this morning with my son and mom, and we were all wearing Bowdoin sweatshirts. I said, ‘This has got to change,’” Montgomery recounted. “I’m kind of excited about developing my own niche. I’ll have no problems switching allegiances.”

Courtney is Freshman All-American

University of Maine baseball pitcher Justin Courtney of Bangor was named a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American on Wednesday.

Courtney is the latest in a long list of Black Bears to receive the honor over the years. The right-hander had an outstanding freshman campaign and finished with a 5-6 record and a team-best 3.24 earned run average in 72.1 innings.

Courtney, who threw two complete games, was named to the All-America East Second Team and also earned a spot on the America East All-Rookie Team. He will pitch this summer for the Bellingham Bells of the West Coast League.