Maine home to many women's sports stars

Joan Benoit said she knew her life would be changed forever when she won gold in Los Angeles. AP Photo/Lennox McLendon

On this date in 1820, Maine became the 23rd state in the United States. Since then, several noteworthy female sports figures have called the state home. Born in Cape Elizabeth on May 16, 1957, Joan Benoit Samuelson won the gold medal in the first women’s marathon at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. Cindy Blodgett, who was born in Clinton in 1975, led the Maine women’s basketball team to the NCAA tournament four times from 1994 to 1998 and was the nation's scoring leader two straight years. She finished her college career with 3,005 points before going on to play in the WNBA. Although she was born in California, Duke women’s basketball coach Joanne P. McCallie called Maine home for several years. McCallie spent eight years, starting in the 1992-93 season, coaching at Maine, where she guided the Black Bears to six consecutive NCAA tournaments.

Read more WFYIs.