A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade Girls Basketball Player of the Year selection process, resulting in winners based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
For her 50 fellow Gatorade State Girls Basketball Player of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Michaela Neuhaus
School: Highlands Ranch (Colo.)
Position: Point guard
Athletic achievement: Neuhaus has led the Falcons to a 22-4 record entering Wednesday's Class 5A semifinals. She averaged 23 points, 4.5 assists, 2.2 rebounds and 2.4 steals per game while shooting at 85 percent from the free throw line through 26 games. A 2011 First Team All-State selection, Neuhaus helped Highlands Ranch to the Class 5A state title as a junior.
Academic excellence: Neuhaus has maintained a 3.62 GPA in the classroom.
Exemplary character: A member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, she has volunteered locally on behalf of an annual holiday toy drive and multiple fundraising campaigns to benefit cancer research.
“Michaela Neuhaus is an incredible athlete,” said Highlands Ranch head coach Caryn Jarocki. “What’s more impressive is that she is such a great leader and has worked hard to lead our team of younger players to new heights. It has been a joy and a pleasure coaching her.”
THE FUTURE: Neuhaus has signed a National Letter of Intent to play basketball on an athletic scholarship at the University of Denver this fall.