CHICAGO — In its 32nd year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, today announced Reed Brown of Carroll Senior High School as its 2016-17 Gatorade Texas Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year. Brown is the first Gatorade Texas Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year to be chosen from Carroll Senior High School.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the racecourse, distinguishes Brown as Texas’s best high school boys cross country runner.
Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year award to be announced in January, Brown joins an elite alumni association of past state award-winners in 12 sports, including Lukas Verzbicas (2010-11, 2009-10 Carl Sandburg, Orland Park, Ill.), Megan Goethals (2009-10, Rochester, Rochester Hills, Mich.), Jordan Hasay (2008-09, Mission College Prep., San Luis Obispo, Calif.), Donn Cabral (2007-08, Glastonbury High School, Glastonbury, Conn.) and Chris Derrick (2007-08, Neuqua Valley, Naperville, Ill.).
The 5-foot-8, 125-pound senior raced to a national title this past season with a time of 15:01.8 at the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships. The state’s returning Gatorade Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year, Brown also won the Region 1 championships, the District 5 championships, the Chile Pepper Festival and the Marcus I Invitational. He finished sixth at the Foot Locker South Regional championships, second at the Nike Cross Nationals South Regional championships and sixth nationally at the NXN Final. Brown took fourth at the Class 6A state championships.
Brown has served as a student leader with the Young Men’s Service League and has volunteered locally on behalf of youth running camps.
“Reed’s determination and work ethic are what sets him apart,” said Southlake Carroll coach Justin Leonard. “He’s an outstanding young man who propels his teammates in a positive direction and helps everyone around him strive for excellence.”
Brown has maintained a B average in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to compete in cross country and track and field on scholarship at the University of Oregon this fall.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
Two-time winner Brown joins Gatorade Texas Boys Cross Country Runners of the Year Carter Blunt (2014-15, Independence High School), Frank Lara (2013-14, Strake Jesuit College Preparatory), Robert Domanic (2012-13, Hebron High School), Craig Nowak (2011-12, Cypress Woods High School), Craig Lutz (2010-11 & 2009-10, Marcus High School), Reed Connor (2008-09, The Woodlands High School), and Colby Lowe (2007-08, Southlake Carroll High School) as athletes who have won the cross country award since its inception in 2007.
As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Brown will be able to select a national or local youth sports organization to receive a grant as part of the Gatorade Play It Forward program. Every Gatorade Player of the Year state winner receives a $1,000 grant to donate and will have the opportunity to enter for an additional $10,000 spotlight grant by writing a brief essay explaining why their selected organization deserves additional support. 12 spotlight grants – one for each sport – will be announced throughout the year.
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