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Eye on POY: Montana girls basketball

3/5/2012

The window on the Gatorade State Girls Basketball Player of the Year race is closing, and the search for elite student-athletes 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.

Lexi Dawkins

Senior forward, Bozeman (Mont.)

2011-12 Team record: 20-0

2011-12 Team standing: Play in Class AA state quarterfinals March 8

2011-12 Points per game: 12.3

2011-12 Rebounds per game: 4.7

2011-12 Assists per game: 1.7

2011-12 Blocks per game: 2.3

Academics: B average

Collegiate destination: Montana State (NLI)

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: 2011 Class AA Eastern Division All-Conference selection

Peyton Ferris

Senior guard, Twin Bridges (Mont.)

2011-12 Team record: 23-1

2011-12 Team standing: Play in Class C state quarterfinals March 8

2011-12 Points per game: 18.2

2011-12 Rebounds per game: 7.1

2011-12 Assists per game: 2.4

2011-12 Blocks per game: 1.8

2011-12 Steals per game: 5.3

Academics: A-minus average

Collegiate destination: Montana State (NLI)

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: Four-time Class C First Team All-State selection; Two-time District 11-12 C MVP

Make no mistake, the Gatorade State Girls Basketball 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.

Shanae Gilham: Senior guard, Bozeman (Mont.)

Molly Klinkler: Senior forward, Fairfield (Mont.)

DJ Reinhardt: Senior guard, Sentinel (Missoula, Mont.)

Alycia Sims: Junior forward, Stevensville (Mont.)

Elle Tinkle: Senior forward, Big Sky (Missoula, Mont.)

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.