Gatorade announced its girls' track and field state Players of the Year today.
Here's a look at the winners across New England:
CONNECTICUT - Claire Howlett, Westhill
The 5-foot-7 junior won the 3200-meter run with a state-record time of 10:20.03 and the 1600-meter run in 4:53.97 at the State Open Championship this spring. At the Class LL divisional championships, Howlett broke the tape in the 3200-meter run in 10:20.03 and finished second in the 1600-meter run in 4:56.25. Her 3200- and 1600 meter run times at the state meet, respectively, ranked No. 12 and No. 65 among U.S. prep competitors in 2013 at the time of her selection.
Also a cross country standout, Howlett has maintained a 4.54 weighted GPA in the classroom. The Online Editor-In-Chief of her school’s student newspaper, she has also donated her time on behalf of Westhill’s buildOn club, serving the Darien Book Aid, St. Luke’s Lifeworks and the Bruce Museum. She has also completed a service-mission trip to the Republic of Malawi.
MAINE - Kate Hall, Lake Region
The 5-foot-9 sophomore won three individual championships at the Class B state meet this spring, leading the Lakers to second place as a team. This past winter’s Indoor Track Female Performer of the Year as named by the Portland Press Herald, Hall captured the long jump outdoors with a leap of 18 feet, 5.75 inches in addition to sweeping the 100-meter dash (with a time of 12.12 seconds) and the 200 (in 25.49). She also anchored the 4x100-meter relay quartet that broke the tape in 50.65. Her 100-meter dash time of 11.68 at the Western Maine Conference Championships, her 200-meter dash time of 24.89 and her long jump leap of 19-0.75 at the New England championships all set state records.
Also a soccer standout, Hall has maintained a 4.00 GPA in the classroom. In addition to donating her time as a youth track and piano instructor, she has volunteered locally on behalf of a foster care program and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s Walk to Cure Diabetes.
NEW HAMPSHIRE - Hannah Parker, Coe-Brown Nortwood Academy
The 5-foot-9 sophomore won two individual state championships this spring and led the Black Bears to the Division II state title as a team. Parker won the 800-meter run with a time of 2:14.73 and the 1600-meter run in 5:12.29. At the Meet of Champions, she won the 800 in 2:10.62 and ran the second leg on Coe-Brown’s winning 4x800-meter relay quartet. Parker also won the 800 at the New England Outdoor Championships in a meet-record time of 2:06.42, which ranked as the nation’s No. 3 performance among prep competitors in 2013 at the time of her selection.
Parker has maintained a B average in the classroom. A member of her school’s student council, she has volunteered locally at the Nottingham Recreation Center and as a mentor at an area school.
RHODE ISLAND - Maddy Berkson, Classical
The state’s returning Gatorade Track & Field Athlete of the Year, the 5-foot-4 junior won the 1500 meters at the state meet this spring and led the Purple to a state title. Berkson, hampered earlier this spring by a health issue, also ran the second leg for Classical’s winning 4x400-meter relay quartet and placed third in both the 800-meter run and the 3000-meter run. At the New Balance Nationals Outdoor, Berkson placed third in the 800 with a state-record time of 2:08.40, which ranked as the nation’s No. 12 performance among prep competitors in 2013 at the time of her selection. She holds five state records and her best times in the mile (5:02.01), 1500 (4:34.27) and 3000 (10:09.86) all rank in the top 100 nationally this spring.
Berkson has maintained an unweighted 4.07 GPA in the classroom. She has volunteered locally as a lab technician in her Advanced Placement Biology class and at youth track events.
VERMONT - Autumn Eastman, Champlain Valley Union
The 5-foot-3 junior won two individual state championships at the Division I state meet this spring and led the Redhawks to a second-place finish as a team. Eastman won the 800-meter run with a state-record time of 2:13.06 and the 1500-meter run in 4:40.72, which ranked as the nation’s No. 63 performance among prep competitors in 2013 at the time of her selection. Eastman ran the anchor leg for CVU’s 4x800-meter relay quartet that won with a state-record time of 9:29.75, and she ran the second leg for the 4x400-meter relay squad that finished third.
Eastman has maintained an A average in the classroom. She has volunteered locally with Champlain Valley Union’s Athletic Leadership Club to promote positive sportsmanship and was accepted into the MedQuest Health Careers Exploration Program at the University of Vermont this summer to explore her interests in science.