Seventeen year-old Hannah Scully, of Saco, has been named the 2012 Maine Games Youth Athlete of the Year.
Since 2003, and the Maine Games' first year in existence, the Thornton Academy (Saco, ME) senior has been the most prolific athlete in the organization's 10-year history.
In 2003, Scully, then an eight-year old baton twirler, won her first Maine Games medal (gold), which began an eight year participation record which has led her to the medal podium more than 30 times.
Competing in team, solo, pairs, and two-baton events in the Maine Games State Baton Twirling Championships, Scully has been a part big part of every twirling event offered by the Pine Tree State's official State Games.
In 2004 and 2005, she also ran in the Maine Games State Track and Field Championships at Fitzpatrick Stadium, in Portland, winning a gold and two silver medals in the 50m and 100m, respectively. It was her track and field medals that qualified her for the 2005 State Games of America, in Colorado Springs, where she competed in the 100m at the track and field competition held at the United States Air Force Academy.
A member of two different twirling teams as part of the Saco Jets twirling organization, Scully has been a consistent force and team leader as well as a youth twirling instructor, having assisted with the training and development of three and four-year old twirlers for the past two years.
After fourteen years under the tutelage of Saco Jets founder, Linda Ladakakos, Scully has made her mark on the sport locally, statewide, and in the Northeast Region of the US Twirling Association. "Hannah works hard at every practice and she is quick to help a teammate," says Ladakakos, who has been coaching twirlers since 1963. "I can always count on her to bring her "A" game and represent our sport with grace, dignity and good sportsmanship. I am proud to be her coach and mentor!"
Scully has won three different Maine State Twirling Association Championships in the past two years, and will complete her competitive career with the Saco Jets at the end of her senior year of high school, when she competes in Daytona, Florida in the United States Twirling Association's National Championship, next July.
In 2012 she was a part of the Jets team that earned a first-place finish at the United States Twirling Association's Regional Championship in Kutztown, Pennsylvania. She also captured an individual championship at that competition.
Scully began twirling baton with the Saco Jets at the age of three, following in the footsteps of her older sister, Abbey. In 2008, with other members of her twirling team, she was selected to be a part of a 150 member-strong national twirling group that performed in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, on national television.
She is a straight-A student, with a 3.95 GPA, studying among other courses, Latin, Greek, and modern dance at Thornton Academy. She is the president of the Thornton Academy Dance Club, a member of the National Honor Society, and has volunteered three years as a youth counselor at Camp Laughing Loon, in Waterboro (ME). This summer she is a camp counselor working with her local recreation department.
Scully has been nominated by the Maine Games as a candidate for the 2012 National Congress of State Games Youth Athlete of the Year Award. In 2010, Hampden's Garrett Allen, a powerlifter, was selected as the NCSG's first Youth Athlete of the Year. In 2011, Justin Liedke, a 14 year-old distance runner from Bellevue, Nebraska (Cornhusker State Games) was the recipient. This year's national awards banquet will be held October 9, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, as part of the National Congress of State Games' annual symposium at the National Sports Center (Blaine, MN).
The Maine Games Male and Female Athletes of the Year Award winners will be announced in later this summer.