Midfielder Kelsey Mehuren and defender Amy Gaiero, who helped lead Belfast High School to the Class B North championship and a berth in the state championship game last fall, have verbally committed to play Division I programs.
Mehuren will play at the University of Maine and Gaiero plans to attend the University of Iowa, according to Belfast coach Jan Jackson.
Mehuren will be a senior at Belfast in the fall and Gaiero will be a junior. Mehuren is expected to join the Black Bears program in 2018 and Gaiero will being playing at Iowa in 2019.
The Lions went 16-2 last season, beating Lawrence of Fairfield 2-0 in the Class B North final before losing to York 2-1 in the state title game. It was York’s third straight state B crown.
Jackson said Mehuren scored a handful of goals but had a lot of assists. She had an assist on Cassie Jackson’s game-winning goal against Lawrence.
“She was my center midfielder and she is a great all-around player,” said Jackson. “She helps us on the attack but she also plays back on defensive corners. She had some defensive saves.
“She took a lot of our free hits and has a beautiful aerial (ball). She also took penalty strokes,” Jackson added. “Kelsey always gives you 100 percent. She’s has good stickwork. She’s the whole package.”
Mehuren is a three-year starter at center mid and was an All-KVAC and all-state selection.
Mehuren is also a track and field standout.
She ran a leg for Belfast relay teams which took a second in the 4×400 at the state Class B meet and fifths in the 4×100 and 4×800. She finished 11th in the 300-meter hurdles.
Jackson said she will receive scholarship money.
Gaiero, according to Jackson, had several defensive saves and is “very tough.
“She took a reverse chip to the face in the state game, came out and went right back in,” said Jackson. “She has great stickwork and works well with the goalie. She works very hard all the time and she’s quick. She also took some shots for us on our penalty corners.
“She plays all the time and is very coachable,” added Jackson.
Gaiero also participates in track, said the Belfast coach.
Jackson wasn’t sure if Gaiero is going to receive scholarship money.
Both girls play for the Waterville-based Majestix field hockey program.
Their going to their respective schools is dependent upon them being admitted and meeting all NCAA eligibility requirements.