The window on the Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year race is closing, and the search for elite student-athletes is in full swing. The award recognizes not only athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. Here are two top candidates who meet the basic award criteria as determined by our ESPNHS team that administers the program’s selection process.
Senior Shortstop/Pitcher, Champlain Valley Union High (Hinesburg, VT)
2012 Team record: 9-1
2012 Team standing: Plays Missisquoi, May 18
2012 Batting average: .467
2012 RBI: 5
2012 Runs: 9
2012 W-L record: 4-0
2012 ERA: 0.00
2012 Strikeouts: 32
Academics: A-minus average
Collegiate destination: Bentley University
How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Two-time First Team All-Metro; 1.174 OPS at the plate; 12 hits allowed in 24 IP.
Senior Shortstop/Pitcher, Mt. Mansfield Union High (Jericho, VT)
2012 Team record: 9-3
2012 Team standing: Plays Burlington, May 19
2012 Batting average: .528
2012 RBI: 10
2012 Runs: 12
2012 W-L record: 4-0
2012 ERA: 0.67
2012 Strikeouts: 37
Academics: B-plus average
Collegiate destination: South Dakota State University
How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Two-time First Team All-Metro, 37:4 strikeout-to-walk ratio; 15 stolen bases in 16 attempts.
Make no mistake, the Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year race isn’t over yet. Time remains for one standout student-athlete among thousands to rise to the top of our list. Here are some more of many who’ve been in the conversation throughout the 2011-12 campaign.
Zach Tandy: Senior Pitcher/Infielder, Colchester High (Colchester, VT)
Soren Pelz-Walsh: Senior Pitcher, Brattleboro High (Brattleboro, VT)
Steve Jurkiewicz: Junior Outfielder/Pitcher, Essex High (Essex Junction, VT)
Curt Echo: Senior Pitcher, Champlain Valley Union High (Hinesburg, VT)
Tyler Kunzmann: Senior Pitcher, Mt. Anthony Union High (Bennington, VT)
Davis Mikell: Junior First Baseman/Pitcher, Champlain Valley Union High (Hinesburg, VT)
Tim Rensch: Senior Pitcher, Rice Memorial High (South Burlington, VT)
Matt Roy: Senior Outfielder, Colchester High (Colchester, VT)
Think we're missing a deserving Gatorade State Player of the Year candidate in your state? Let us know via e-mail at ESPNHS_GPOY@ESPN.com.