CHICAGO (June 4, 2018) — In its 33rd year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, today announced Lexi Kilfoyl of Academy at the Lakes as its 2017-18 Gatorade Florida Softball Player of the Year. Kilfoyl is the first Gatorade Florida Softball Player of the Year to be chosen from Academy at the Lakes.
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 Kilfoyl as Florida’s best highschool softball player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year award announced in June, Kilfoyl joins an elite alumni association of past state softball award-winners, including Catherine Osterman (2000-01, Cy Spring High School, Texas), Kelsey Stewart (2009-10, Arkansas City High School, Kan.), Carley Hoover (2012-13 D.W. Daniel High School, S.C.), Jenna Lilley (2012-13, Hoover High School, Ohio), Morgan Zerkle (2012-13 Cabell Midland High School, W. Va.), and Rachel Garcia (2014-15, Highland High School, Calif.).
The 6-foot-2 junior right-handed pitcher led the Wildcats to a 26-4 record and the Class 2A state championship this past season. Kilfoyl posted a 23-1 mark in the circle with a 0.32 earned run average and 249 strikeouts in 154 innings pitched. At the plate, Kilfoyl produced a .482 batting average with five home runs, 35 RBI, a .585 on-base percentage and a .788 slugging percentage. A member of the 2017 USA Softball Junior National Team, she fired an 11-inning shutout and stroked the game-winning double in the Wildcats’ 1-0 win over Aucilla Christian High in the state title game.
A member of the Mu Alpha Theta mathematics honor society, Kilfoyl has volunteered locally as part of community beautification projects.
Kilfoyl has maintained a 3.78 GPA in the classroom. She has made a verbal commitment to play softball on scholarship at the University of Alabama beginning in the fall of 2019.
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.
Kilfoyl joins recent Gatorade Florida Softball Players of the Year Ally Muraskin (2016-17, Coral Springs Charter School), Katie Chronister (2015-16, Gainesville High School), Jenna Goodrich (2014-15, American Heritage School), Meghan King (2013-14, St. Thomas Aquinas High School), Sydney Wright (2012-13, Bishop Snyder High School), Bianka Bell (2011-12, Chamberlain High School), Sami Fagan (2010-11, Dunnellon High School), Kasey Fagan (2009-10 & 2008-09, Dunnellon High School), Jaclyn Traina (2007–08, Naples High School), and Kelsi Dunne (2006-07, Spruce Creek High School) among the state’s list of former award winners.
As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Lexi 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.
To keep up to date on the latest happenings, become a fan of Gatorade Player of the Year on Facebook and follow the conversation on Twitter #GatoradePOY. For more on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of past winners and the announcement of the Gatorade National Player of the Year, visithttp://playeroftheyear.gatorade.com/.