A dedicated ESPNHS team managed this past fall's Gatorade Boys Soccer Player of the Year selection process, resulting in winners based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
For his 29 fellow Gatorade State Fall Boys Soccer Player of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Zach Carroll
School: Grand Blanc (Mich.)
Weight: 185 pounds
Athletic achievement: Carroll scored eight goals and passed for seven assists this past season, leading the Bobcats (17-5) to the Division 1, Region 4 semifinals. The 2011 National Soccer Coaches Association of America National High School Player of the Year, he was the Michigan Soccer Coaches Association’s Mr. Soccer. Carroll was also a member of the U.S. Soccer Under-17 Men’s National Team that participated in the FIFA U-17 World Cup last summer. He concluded his prep soccer career with 33 goals and 30 assists.
Academic excellence: Carroll has maintained a 3.64 GPA in the classroom.
Exemplary character: He has volunteered locally as a youth soccer coach and as part of multiple community service initiatives on behalf of the Grand Blanc High National Honor Society.
“Zach Carroll is an imposing figure,” said Brian O’Leary, head coach of Novi (Mich.). “His size and strength make it so he wins every 50-50 ball in the air or on the ground. He is impossible to beat one on one and with the ball he goes by players with ease. Carroll is on another level than every player in this state.”
THE FUTURE: Carroll has signed a National Letter of Intent to play soccer on athletic scholarship at the University of Virginia this fall.