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Parker Wolfe Named 2020-21 Gatorade® National Boys Cross Country Player Of The Year

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GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo., April 22, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- In its 36th year of honoring the nation's most elite high school athletes, Gatorade today announced Parker Wolfe of Greenwood Village High School in Greenwood Village, Colo. is the 2020-21 Gatorade National Boys Cross Country Player of the Year. Wolfe won the prestigious award for his accomplishments on and off the field, joining an impressive group of former Gatorade National Boys Cross Country Player of the Year winners that have combined for 19 National Championships and two gold medals.

Wolfe was surprised by his family, coaches and teammates at his school. Check out a video of the announcement here.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Wolfe as the nation's best high school boys cross country player. A national advisory panel comprised of sport-specific experts and sports journalists helped select Wolfe from more than 300,000 high school boys cross country players nationwide.

Competition for the national award was fierce. Wolfe topped the list of state winners in boys cross country who collectively boast an incredible list of accomplishments, including 11 returning state Gatorade Players of the Year, 21 with a GPA of 4.0 (or the equivalent) and above, and 29 with plans to compete at NCAA Division 1 schools in the fall.

"Parker Wolfe's season was about quality over quantity," said Erik Boal, an editor with Dyestat. "When he was at his best, there was no one better—a reality underscored by his course-record performances at both the Heritage Classic and the Colorado State 5A final, in addition to another exceptional effort at the RunningLane National Championships. Wolfe went from being the final guy to earn All-American status at Foot Locker nationals in 2019 to one of the country's most dominant competitors a year later, joining an impressive legacy of outstanding Colorado distance runners."

The 5-foot-7, 125-pound senior raced to the Class 5A individual state championship this past season with a course record time of 15:10.4. Wolfe won the RunningLane National Championships, breaking the tape in 14:26.94. He added victories at the Region 1 championships, the Heritage Distance Classic and the Centennial League Warrior 5K.

A member of his school's DECA club, Wolfe has volunteered locally on behalf of Warren Village, which provides assistance for low-income, single-parent families.

Wolfe has maintained a 3.86 GPA in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to compete in cross country and track and field on scholarship at the University of North Carolina this fall.

"No one could have predicted how the last year would be, and it didn't slow down Parker from accomplishing his goals," said Gatorade Senior Vice President and General Manager Brett O'Brien. "Parker is an impressive student-athlete and a deserving winner of the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Cross Country Player of the Year award."

Each year a selection committee evaluates the nation's top talent in the District of Columbia and all 50 states, choosing national winners in 12 different sports: football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, baseball, softball, boys and girls soccer, and boys and girls track and field.

Gatorade is dedicated to recognizing, supporting and keeping athletes in the game because of the lifelong skills sports instill on and off the field. Since the program's inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming coaches, business owners and educators. Previous winners include a distinguished list of athletes, such as Peyton Manning, Abby Wambach, Jayson Tatum, Derek Jeter, Elena Delle Donne and many other sports icons.

To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit www.playeroftheyear.gatorade.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GatoradePOY or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Gatorade.

PREVIOUS GATORADE NATIONAL BOYS CROSS COUNTRY PLAYER OF THE YEAR WINNERS

YEAR

NAME

HOMETOWN

STATUS

2019-20

Nico Young

Newbury Park, CA

Northern Arizona University

2018-19

Liam Anderson

Larkspur, CA

Stanford University

2017-18

Aidan Troutner

Provo, UT

Brigham Young University

2016-17

Casey Clinger

American Fork, UT

Brigham Young University

2015-16

Andrew Hunter

Purcellville, VA

Tinman Elite

2014-15

Grant Fisher

Grand Blanc, MI

Nike

2013-14

Grant Fisher

Grand Blanc, MI

Nike

2012-13

Edward Cheserek

Newark, NJ

Skechers Performance

2011-12

Futsum Zeinasellassie

Indianapolis, IN

Hoka

2010-11

Lukas Verzbicas

Orland Park, IL

Ran for University of Oregon (injured)

2009-10

Lukas Verzbicas

Orland Park, IL

Ran for University of Oregon (injured)

2008-09

Reed Connor

The Woodlands, TX

Ran for University of Wisconsin

2007-08

Chris Derrick

Naperville, IL

Nike

About Gatorade
The Gatorade Company, a division of PepsiCo (NASDAQ: PEP), meets the needs of consumers who participate in Sports and Fitness, through brands that include Gatorade, Propel, Muscle Milk, Evolve and Bolt24. The solutions they provide are driven by a deep understanding of the unique needs and occasions of different types of sports and fitness. Gatorade, their marquee brand, is underpinned by more than 50-year history of studying the best athletes in the world and sports-nutrition research by the Gatorade Sport Science Institute, allowing it to provide scientifically-formulated products that meet athletes' needs both on and off the field. For more information and a full list of products, please visit www.gatorade.com.

About PepsiCo
PepsiCo products are enjoyed by consumers more than one billion times a day in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. PepsiCo generated more than $70 billion in net revenue in 2020, driven by a complementary food and beverage portfolio that includes Frito-Lay, Gatorade, Pepsi-Cola, Quaker, Tropicana and SodaStream. PepsiCo's product portfolio includes a wide range of enjoyable foods and beverages, including 23 brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales.

Guiding PepsiCo is our vision to Be the Global Leader in Convenient Foods and Beverages by Winning with Purpose. "Winning with Purpose" reflects our ambition to win sustainably in the marketplace and embed purpose into all aspects of our business strategy and brands. For more information, visit www.pepsico.com.

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View original content:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/parker-wolfe-named-2020-21-gatorade-national-boys-cross-country-player-of-the-year-301274355.html

SOURCE The Gatorade Company