A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade State Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year selection process, resulting in winners based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2012 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
For his 50 fellow Gatorade State Boys Track & Field Athletes of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Sam Parsons
School: Tatnall School (Wilmington, Del.)
Athletic achievement: Parsons won the 1,600-meter run with a time of 4:12.67 at the Meet of Champions this spring. The state’s 2011-12 Gatorade Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year, he also won three individual titles at the Division II state meet, leading the Hornets to second place as a team. Parsons won the 800-meter run in 2:01.39, the 1,600 in 4:14.47 and the 3,200-meter run in 9:24.19. Parsons also anchored the 4x800-meter relay squad that broke the tape in 8:16.31. His 3,000-meter time of 8:28.20 and 3,200 time of 9:00.61 at the Arcadia Invitational ranked as the nation’s No. 18 and No. 26 performances among prep competitors in 2012 at the time of his selection.
Academic excellence: Also a cross country standout, Parsons has maintained a 3.01 GPA in the classroom.
Exemplary character: A member of his school’s strategic games club and head of the Young Republican National Federation chapter, he has volunteered locally on behalf of a food bank, the Special Olympics, Amnesty International and Shoes 2 Share.
“Sam has been great,” said Mike Mooney, head coach at rival Newark (Del.). “I’ve seen him run since he was a little kid. Through sheer will and good coaching, he’s just improved and improved and improved every year. He did some amazing things this year. Even to kids on our team, he was instrumental, always super positive, spreading good will in the running community.”
THE FUTURE: Parsons has signed a National Letter of Intent to compete on an athletic scholarship at North Carolina State University this fall.