CHICAGO (June 21, 2018) - In its 33rd year of honoring the nation's best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, today announced Sophie Galloway of Graves County High School as its 2017-18 Gatorade Kentucky Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year. Galloway is the first Gatorade Kentucky Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year to be chosen from Graves County High School.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the track, distinguishes Galloway as Kentucky's best high school girls track & field athlete. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year award to be announced in June, Galloway joins an elite alumni association of state track & field award winners, including Lolo Jones (1997-98, Roosevelt High School, Iowa), Allyson Felix (2002-03, Los Angeles Baptist High School, Calif.), Robert Griffin III (2006-07, Copperas Cove High School, Texas), Grant Fisher (2013-14 & 2014- 15, Grand Blanc High School, Mich.) and Candace Hill (2014-15, Rockdale County High School, Ga.).
The 6-foot freshman set a state record in the triple jump when competing at this month's New Balance Nationals Outdoor. Galloway's leap of 39 feet, 5.25 inches ranked No. 58 in the nation among prep competitors this spring at the time of her selection. Galloway won the triple jump at the Class AAA state meet with a meet-record distance of 38-10. She also took first in the long jump, leading the Eagles to an 11th-place finish as a team. She was the state runner-up in both the long jump and triple jump as an eighth-grader.
Galloway has volunteered locally as a youth track coach, and she had donated her time on behalf of fundraising campaigns to benefit special-needs children and a women's shelter. "Sophie has been one of the top athletes in girls track for quite some time," said Mike Wicker, head coach of Calloway County High. "She is without a doubt the best female jumper in Kentucky."
Galloway has maintained a 3.75 GPA in the classroom. She will begin her sophomore year of high school this fall.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
Galloway joins recent Gatorade Kentucky Girls Track & Field Athletes of the Year Michaela Reinhart (2016-17, Lexington Catholic High School), Lily Lowe (2015-16, Calloway County High School), Kianna Gray (2014-15, 2013-14 & 2012-13, North Hardin High School), Alisha Adair (2011-12, Western Hills High School), Emma Brink (2010-1, 2009-10 & 2008-09, Sacred Heart Academy), Lutisha Bowen (2007-08, Ballard High School), and Mary Grace Pellegrini (2006-07, DuPont Manual High School) among the state's list of former award winners.
As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Galloway will be able to select a national or local youth sports organization to receive a grant as part of the Gatorade Play It Forward program. Every Gatorade Player of the Year state winner receives a $1,000 grant to donate and will have the opportunity to enter for an additional $10,000 spotlight grant by writing a brief essay explaining why their selected organization deserves additional support. 12 spotlight grants - one for each sport - will be announced throughout the year.
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