A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade Softball Player of the Year selection process, resulting in this winner based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011-12 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
For her 48 fellow Gatorade State Softball Player of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Kylie Howard
School: John Marshall (Glen Dale, W.Va.)
Athletic achievement: Howard led the Monarchs (35-4) to the Class AAA state championship this past season. She batted .475 with 52 runs scored, five home runs, 15 doubles, eight triples, and 55 RBI. Howard is a three-time First Team All-State selection and was named to the 2012 All-State Tournament team.
Academic excellence: Howard has maintained a 3.67 GPA in the classroom.
Exemplary character: Also a basketball standout, she is a devoted member of her church youth group and has volunteered locally on behalf of youth basketball programs.
“Howard is a very good hitter and she has good speed when she gets on base,” said Lorri Lipscomb, head coach at Morgantown (W.Va.). “She also has a great arm and she makes all the catches in the field.”
THE FUTURE: Howard will begin her senior year of high school this fall.