High-SchoolPlayer-of-the-Year: Tennessee

Tennessee Boys Track AOY: Brock Baker

June, 21, 2012
6/21/12
5:08
AM ET
A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade State Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year selection process, resulting in winners based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2012 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.

For his 50 fellow Gatorade State Boys Track & Field Athletes of the Year winners, click here.


THE WINNER: Brock Baker

THE BASICS

School: Oakland (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)
Grade: Junior
Event(s): Distance
Height: 6-foot
Weight: 148 pounds

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: Baker won the 1,600-meter run with a time of 4:15.10 and the 3,200-meter run in 9:18.20 at the Class 3A state meet this spring and led the Patriots to a ninth-place finish as a team. A 2012 New Balance Indoor All-American selection, he placed fifth in the 2-mile at the New Balance Nationals Outdoor championships with a time of 9:00.22, which ranked No. 6 in the nation among prep competitors in 2012 at the time of his selection. Baker also ranked in the Top 25 nationally with his season-best performances in the mile, 3,000 and 3,200.

Academic excellence: Baker has maintained a 4.0 GPA in the classroom and ranks No. 1 in his graduating class.

Exemplary character: A soloist in the Oakland Chamber Choir, he helped found the non-profit Sustaining A Village Everyday, which raised $29,000 to provide food and clean water to a village in Haiti. He has volunteered locally with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

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Tennessee Girls Track AOY: Jennifer Cannon

June, 20, 2012
6/20/12
5:08
AM ET
A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade State Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year selection process, resulting in winners based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2012 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.

For her 50 fellow Gatorade State Girls Track & Field Athletes of the Year winners, click here.


THE WINNER: Jennifer Cannon

THE BASICS

School: Tennessee (Bristol, Tenn.)
Grade: Senior
Event(s): Pentathlon
Height: 5-foot-9

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: Cannon won three individual state championships this spring and led the Vikings to a second-place finish as a team at the Class AAA state meet. She won the pentathlon with 3,788 points, the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 14.17 seconds and the 300-meter hurdles in 43.09. Cannon also placed second in the long jump with a leap of 18 feet, 2.5 inches and third in the 100-meter dash in 12.44. The owner of nine school records, she placed second in the heptathlon at this month’s New Balance Outdoor Nationals with 4,801 points.

Academic excellence: Cannon has maintained a 4.0 GPA in the classroom.

Exemplary character: She has volunteered locally with the Special Olympics, as a peer tutor with Tennessee High’s special needs students and as a youth track coach and mentor.

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Tennessee Softball POY: Kelsey Nunley

June, 6, 2012
6/06/12
5:07
AM ET
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: Kelsey Nunley

THE BASICS

School: Soddy-Daisy (Tenn.)
Grade: Senior
Position: Right-handed pitcher
Height: 5-foot-10

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: Nunley led the Trojans (46-5) to their second Class AAA state championship in three years this past season. The two-time All-City Player of the Year as named by Chattanooga’s Times Free Press, she posted a 36-4 record with two saves, a 0.45 ERA and 401 strikeouts against just 21 walks in 246 innings pitched, recording 26 shutouts and 11 no-hitters. In five Class AAA state tournament games, Nunley finished 4-1 in the circle with a 0.60 ERA and 61 strikeouts, issuing only three walks in 35 innings.

Academic excellence: Also a basketball and volleyball standout, Nunley has maintained a 3.57 GPA in the classroom.

Exemplary character: A member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and National Honor Society, she has also donated her donated her time as a youth softball instructor.

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Eye on POY: Tennessee softball

June, 1, 2012
6/01/12
12:00
PM ET
The window on the Gatorade State Softball 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.

Lindsey Fadnek
Senior right-handed pitcher, Coalfield (Tenn.)

2012 Team record: 39-10-1 (Class A)
2012 Team standing: Lost Class A state semifinal to Christian Grace Academy (Knoxville, Tenn.), 8-0

2012 Batting average: .345
2012 RBI: 32
2012 Runs: 14

2012 W-L record: 34-9
2012 ERA: 0.58
2012 Strikeouts: 567

Academics: B average
Collegiate destination: Marshall University

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: Struck out 2.15 batters per inning. 2011 First Team All-American as named by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association. 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 Class A First Team All-State selection as named by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association.

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Tennessee Baseball POY: Jonathan King

May, 30, 2012
5/30/12
5:07
AM ET
A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade Baseball 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 his 47 fellow Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year winners, click here.

THE WINNER: Jonathan King

THE BASICS

School: Riverdale (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)
Grade: Senior
Position: LHP/OF
Height: 5-foot-11
Weight: 185 pounds

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: King posted an 11-1 record with a 0.65 ERA and 91 strikeouts against just 17 walks in 65 innings pitched this past season, leading the Warriors (32-11) to the Class AAA state semifinals. A Perfect Game USA Preseason Honorable Mention All-Region selection, he batted .398 with 10 home runs and 34 RBI. King produced a .759 slugging percentage and .535 on-base percentage.

Academic excellence: King has maintained a 3.98 GPA in the classroom.

Exemplary character: In addition to donating his time as a youth baseball instructor, he has volunteered as a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and mentors children as part of Riverdale’s early childhood studies program.

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Eye on POY: Tennessee baseball

May, 21, 2012
5/21/12
6:27
PM ET
The window on the Gatorade State Baseball 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.

Jonathan King
Senior left-handed pitcher/outfielder, Riverdale (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)

2012 Team record: 30-10 (Class AAA)
2012 Team standing: Class AAA first round vs. Arlington (Tenn.) on Tuesday

2012 W-L-S record:: 8-1-1
2012 ERA: 0.76
2012 Strikeouts: 68

2012 Batting average: .405
2012 RBI: 33
2012 Runs: 30
NOTE: Statistics updated through 37 games.

Academics: A average
Collegiate destination: Georgia Tech

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Struck out 1.48 batters, allowed 0.11 earned runs and issued 0.74 baserunners per inning. Belted an extra-base hit once every 4.8 at-bats. Top-500 ranked prospect in Class of 2012 as rated by Perfect Game USA (No. 5 in Tenn.). 2012 Daily News Journal All Sports Awards Pitcher of the Year. 2012 District Player of the Year. 2012 Preseason Honorable Mention All-Region selection as named by Perfect Game USA. 2011 East Coast Showcase participant.

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Tennessee Boys Soccer POY: Tim Baker

May, 15, 2012
5/15/12
5:05
AM ET
A dedicated ESPNHS team managed this spring'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 19 fellow Gatorade State Spring Boys Soccer Player of the Year winners, click here.
For the 30 Gatorade State Fall Boys Soccer Player of the Year winners, click here.

THE WINNER: Tim Baker

THE BASICS

School: Knoxville Catholic (Knoxville, Tenn.)
Grade: Senior
Position: Midfielder
Height: 5-foot-8
Weight: 135 pounds

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: Baker scored 29 goals and passed for 16 assists this past season, leading the Irish (15-2-3) to the District 4-AAA Tournament semifinals. A First Team All-State selection by both the Tennessee High School Soccer Coaches Association and the Tennessee Sports Writers Association, he concluded his prep soccer career with 65 goals and 49 assists.

Academic excellence: Baker has maintained a 3.78 weighted GPA in the classroom.

Exemplary character: He has volunteered locally as a youth soccer coach and as part of multiple community service initiatives in association with his school.

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Eye on POY: Tennessee boys soccer

May, 9, 2012
5/09/12
6:16
PM ET
The window on the Gatorade State Boys Soccer 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.

Tim Baker
Senior midfielder, Knoxville Catholic (Knoxville, Tenn.)

2012 Team record: 15-1-3
2012 Team standing: District 4-AAA tournament semifinals on Wednesday

2012 Goals: 29
2012 Assists: 16
Career goals: 65
Career assists: 49

Academics: B-plus average
Collegiate destination: Lee University

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Averaging 2.37 points per game this season. 2011 Class AAA First Team All-State selection as named by the Tennessee High School Soccer Coaches Association and Tennessee Sports Writers Association Class AAA First Team All-State selection. 2011 District 4-AAA Midfielder of the Year.

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Tennessee Boys Hoop POY: Alex Poythress

March, 22, 2012
3/22/12
5:08
AM ET
Alex Poythress, Gatorade POY, boys, Northeast, Tennessee
Andrew Shurtleff/ESPNHSNortheast (Clarksville, Tenn.) senior Alex Poythress eclipsed 2,000 points in his prep career.
A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade Boys Basketball 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 50 fellow Gatorade State Boys Basketball Player of the Year winners, click here.

THE WINNER: Alex Poythress

THE BASICS

School: Northeast (Clarksville, Tenn.)
Grade: Senior
Position: Forward
Height: 6-foot-8
Weight: 225 pounds

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: Poythress averaged 28.2 points, 11.1 rebounds, 4.3 blocks, 1.9 assists and 1.4 steals per game this past season, leading the Eagles (28-3) to the Class AAA, Region 5 tournament quarterfinals. A McDonald’s All-American Game selection, he was the state’s 2012 Class AAA Mr. Basketball and a two-time Class 10-AAA District Player of the Year. Poythress concluded his prep basketball career with 2,065 points.

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Eye on POY: Tennessee boys basketball

March, 12, 2012
3/12/12
7:59
PM ET
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.

Alex Poythress
Senior forward, Northeast (Clarksville, Tenn.)

2011-12 Team record: 28-3
2011-12 Team standing: Lost in Class AAA, Region 5 Tournament quarterfinals

2011-12 Points per game: 28.2
2011-12 Rebounds per game: 11.1
2011-12 Assists per game: 1.9
2011-12 Blocks per game: 4.3
2011-12 Steals per game: 1.4

Academics: A average
Collegiate destination: Kentucky (NLI)

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: McDonald's All-American; Two-time Class 10-AAA District Player of the Year; Two-time Class AAA Mr. Basketball finalist

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Tennessee Girls Hoop POY: Bashaara Graves

March, 8, 2012
3/08/12
5:43
AM ET
A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade Girls Basketball 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 her 50 fellow Gatorade State Girls Basketball Player of the Year winners, click here.

Gatorade POY, Clarksville, Bashaara Graves, Tennessee, girls
HoopGurlz/ESPNHSClarksville (Tenn.) senior forward Bashaara Graves earned McDonald's and WBCA All-American honors.
THE WINNER: Bashaara Graves

THE BASICS

School: Clarksville (Tenn.)
Grade: Senior
Position: Forward
Height: 6-foot-2

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: Graves led the Wildcats to a 36-0 record and a berth in the Class AAA state quarterfinals against Memphis Central (Memphis, Tenn.), scheduled for Thursday. She averaged 21.3 points, 11.8 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 2.5 steals and 2.3 blocks per game entering the postseason round of eight. Selected to play in both the McDonald’s and Women’s Basketball Coaches Association All-American games, Graves shot 63.9 percent from the field and 73.7 percent from the free throw line in 2012. She averaged 17.9 points, 13.9 rebounds, 4.3 steals and 3.3 assists as a junior, leading the Warriors (32-4) to the 2011 Class AAA state quarterfinals.

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Eye on POY: Tennessee girls basketball

February, 26, 2012
2/26/12
3:39
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.

Return of the POY, Shacobia Barbee, Tennessee, Riverdale
Chris Hansen/ESPNHSShacobia Barbee is the returning Gatorade Tennessee Girls Basketball Player of the Year.
Shacobia Barbee
Senior forward, Riverdale (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)

2011-12 Team record: 28-3 (Class 3A)
2011-12 Team standing: Class AAA state tournament begins March 4; No. 5 ranked team on ESPNHS FAB 50

2011-12 Points per game: 14.8
2011-12 Rebounds per game: 11.1
2011-12 Assists per game: 4.4
2011-12 Blocks per game: 1.2
2011-12 Steals per game: 4.6

Academics: A-minus average
Collegiate destination: University of Georgia

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: Shooting 45.5 percent from the field and 61.7 percent from the free throw line. 2010-11 Gatorade Tennessee Girls Basketball Player of the Year. Riverdale faced six opponents ranked on the FAB 50, finishing with a 3-3 record against those teams. No. 82 ranked recruit in Class of 2012 as rated by ESPNHS. 2012 Women’s Basketball Coaches Association High School All-America Honorable Mention. 2011 Class AAA Miss Basketball. 2011 Class AAA All-Tournament selection. 2010 and 2011 Player of the Year as named by The Tennessean. 2010 & 2011 Class 3A First Team All-State selection as named by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association. 2010 Class AAA All-Tournament Most Valuable Player. 2010 Class AAA state champion. 2011 Class AAA state runner-up.

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Tennessee Girls Soccer POY: Olivia Harrison

February, 9, 2012
2/09/12
5:04
AM ET
A dedicated ESPNHS team managed this past fall's Gatorade State Girls 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 her 21 fellow Gatorade State Fall Girls Soccer Player of the Year winners, click here.

THE WINNER: Olivia Harrison

THE BASICS

School: Houston (Germantown, Tenn.)
Grade: Senior
Position: Forward
Height: 5-foot-7

THE PILLARS

Athletic achievement: Harrison scored 31 goals and passed for 15 assists this past season, leading the Mustangs (18-3-2) to the Class AAA state semifinals. A two-time Memphis Commercial Appeal Best of the Preps winner, she is also a two-time All-American selection by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America and a two-time Tennessee High School Soccer Coaches Association Player of the Year. Harrison led Houston to the 2010 Class AAA state title and concluded her prep career with 106 goals and 65 assists.

Academic excellence: Harrison has maintained a 3.02 GPA in the classroom.

Exemplary character: A member of the Houston High Science Club, she has volunteered locally at an animal shelter, as a youth leader at her church and with the U.S Youth Soccer TOPSoccer program serving young athletes with disabilities.

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Eye on POY: Tennessee girls soccer

February, 6, 2012
2/06/12
10:58
AM ET
The fall soccer season may have concluded, but the search for Gatorade State Girls Soccer Players of the Year 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.

Olivia Harrison
Senior forward, Houston (Germantown, Tenn.)

2011 Team record: 18-3-2 (Class AAA)
2011 Team standing: Lost Class AAA state semifinals

2011 Goals: 31
2011 Assists: 15
2011 Points per game: 2.00
Career goals: 106
Career assists: 65

Academics: B average
Collegiate destination: University of Mississippi

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: Recorded eight goals and three assists in five postseason games and had a goal and assist in the Mustangs’ 3-2 shootout loss to Farragut (Knoxville, Tenn.) in the state semifinals. Had a direct hand in all 22 goals the Mustangs scored in their 12 games decided by two goals or fewer. Two-time Memphis Commercial Appeal Best of the Preps winner. Two-time NSCAA All-American. Two-time Tennessee High School Soccer Coaches Association Player of the Year.

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Return of the POY: Tennessee's Shacobia Barbee

February, 1, 2012
2/01/12
4:26
PM ET
The 2011-12 Gatorade State Girls Basketball Players of the Year selection process is underway, and what better way to kick off coverage than with profiles of returning underclassmen winners? Repeating is no guarantee, but here's a snapshot of what this year’s challengers can shoot for.

Return of the POY, Shacobia Barbee, Tennessee, Riverdale
Chris Hansen/ESPNHSShacobia Barbee is the returning Gatorade Tennessee Girls Basketball Player of the Year.
Name: Shacobia Barbee
School: Riverdale (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)

Grade: Senior
Position: Forward

Height: 5-foot-11

Notes: 2010-11 Gatorade Tennessee Girls Basketball Player of the Year. Led Warriors (33-2) to the 2011 Division I Class AAA state championship game. No. 12 ranked recruit in Class of 2012 as rated by ESPNHS HoopGurlz. 2010-11 Class AAA Miss Tennessee Basketball. 2009-10 and 2010-11 Midstate Player of the Year as named by The Tennesseean. 2009-10 ESPNHS Underclass All-American. 2009-10 Class AAA All-State selection as named by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association. 2010 Class AAA All-Tournament Most Valuable Player. 2010 Class AAA state champion.
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