A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade State Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year selection process, resulting in winners on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
THE WINNER: Maggie Montoya
School: Rogers (Ark.)
Athletic achievement: Montoya raced to the Class 7A individual state title this past season with a time of 19:12, leading the Mounties to the state title as a team. The 2010-11 Gatorade Arkansas Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year, she was the fastest Arkansas competitor at the Foot Locker South Regional championships, crossing the line in 17:40.
Academic excellence: Montoya has maintained a 3.85 GPA in the classroom.
Exemplary character: A devoted member of her church community, she has volunteered locally as a bible camp leader and on behalf of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
“Maggie Montoya is the best athlete, male or female, I’ve coached in 25 years,” said Rogers head coach Carlton Efurd. “But what makes her so special is that she is modest about her God-given athletic ability and trains like a champion. Her attitude is fantastic and contagious.”
THE FUTURE: Montoya will begin her senior year of high school this fall.