High-SchoolPlayer-of-the-Year: St. Thomas More

The window on the Gatorade State Boys 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.

Zach Hanson
Senior Forward, T.F. Riggs High (Pierre, SD)

2011-12 Team record: 16-7
2011-12 Team standing: Plays Huron in state quarterfinals, 3/15

2011-12 Points per game: 18.0
2011-12 Rebounds per game: 8.0
2011-12 Assists per game: 1.1
2011-12 Blocks per game: 1.9

Academics: B average
Collegiate destination: HS Junior

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Second Team All-State in 2011; Two-time All-Conference.

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Eye on POY: Louisiana girls basketball

March, 1, 2012
3/01/12
9:46
PM ET
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.

Kuaneshia Baker
Senior guard, Helen Cox (Harvey, La.)

2011-12 Team record: 24-7
2011-12 Team standing: Ineligible for postseason

2011-12 Points per game: 25.0
2011-12 Rebounds per game: 9.7
2011-12 Assists per game: 4.5
2011-12 Blocks per game: 1.1
2011-12 Steals per game: 3.0

Academics: B average
Collegiate destination: LSU (NLI)

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: McDonald's All-American Game nominee; Preseason All-Metro Player of the Year; Two-time District Player of the Year; School-record 2,695 career points.

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