For a list of the other Gatorade State Cross Country Runner of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Hailey Ricks
School: Star Valley (Afton, Wyo.)
Athletic achievement: She raced to her third consecutive Class 3A individual state championship this past season with a time of 19:42.71, leading the Braves to a state title as a team. The returning Gatorade Wyoming Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year, Ricks also earned 11th place at the 2012 Nike Cross Nationals Northwest Regional championships, crossing the line in 18:44.8.
Academic excellence: Ricks has maintained a 3.38 GPA.
Exemplary character: An active member of her church youth group, she has volunteered locally on behalf of an area food bank. She also organized a 5K charity road race.
“Without a doubt, Hailey Ricks was the premier girls cross country runner in the state this season,” said Steve Smoot, head coach at Douglas (Wyo.). “Her dedication to the sport was evident in her state championship win. Her leadership and fierce competitive drive was equally balanced by her graciousness and exemplary sportsmanship.”
THE FUTURE: Ricks has committed to Weber State.