The fall soccer season may have concluded, but the search for Gatorade State Girls Soccer Players of the Year 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 midfielder, Notre Dame Academy (Park Hills, Ky.)
2011 Team record: 24-3
2011 Team standing: State champions
2011 Goals: 21
2011 Assists: 4
2011 Points per game: 0.93
Career goals: 39
Career assists: 15
Academics: A average
Collegiate destination: Western Kentucky University
How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: Scored six goals and added two assists in eight postseason games. Netted the only goal in the state championship match, a 1-0 Pandas win over Sacred Heart Academy (Louisville, Ky.). With her 21 goals and four assists, had a direct hand in 22.1 percent of her team’s 113 goals. 2011 First Team All-State selection. Two-time All-Star as named by the Kentucky Enquirer. 2011 NSCAA All-Region IV selection. 2011 Northern Kentucky Athletic Conference Player of the Year.
Junior forward, St. Henry District (Erlanger, Ky.)
2011 Team record: 18-4
2011 Team standing: Lost 9th Region championship game
2011 Goals: 23
2011 Assists: 13
2011 Points per game: 1.64
Career goals: 86
Career assists: 33
Academics: A average
Collegiate destination: University of Dayton
How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: Tallied five goals and four assists in four postseason games, including a goal and assist in a 3-2 loss to Dixie Heights (Edgewood, Ky.) in the 9th Region final. With her 23 goals and 13 assists, had a direct hand in 59 percent of the team’s 61 goals. 2011 East State Player of the Year. 2011 Player of the Year as named by the Kentucky Enquirer. Two-time First Team All-State selection. 2010 state tournament Most Valuable Player. 2011 NSCAA All-Region IV selection.
Make no mistake, the Gatorade State Girls Soccer 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.
Kennedy Collier: Senior forward, Boyle County (Danville, Ky.)
Andrea Distler: Senior midfielder, Sacred Heart Academy (Louisville, Ky.)
DeStinie Graves-Truax: Junior forward, Tates Creek (Lexington, Ky.)
Sydney Scheben: Senior forward, Notre Dame Academy (Park Hills, Ky.)
Marissa Williams: Senior midfielder, South Oldham (Crestwood, Ky.)
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.