Oden and Charles received their awards at a luncheon emceed by ESPNs Stuart Scott and attended by former Gatorade award winners Matt Leinart of the Arizona Cardinals (2000-01 California Football Player of the Year, Alonzo Mourning of the Miami Heat (1987-88 National Boys Basketball Player of the Year), and former Stanford University and USA Volleyball teammates Logan Tom (1998-99 National Volleyball Player of the Year) and Ogonna Nnamani (2000-01 National Volleyball Player of the Year).
Introduced in 1985, the Gatorade Player of the Year award was one of the first national awards to honor high school athletes for their accomplishments on and off the field in a variety of sports. In 2003, the Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year Awards were established to identify and honor the nations top overall male and female high school athlete from among the 10 Gatorade National Players of the Year honored during the high school athletic season.
All Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year nominees will walk the ESPY red carpet and be featured as special guests during The ESPY Awards Show. The show will take place this evening and air on ESPN on Sunday, July 16 at 9 p.m. EDT.
"The ESPY Awards honor the best in sports, so it is only fitting that we celebrate the best in high school sports on the same day," said Tom Fox, Gatorade senior vice president of sports marketing. The Gatorade Player of the Year award has built an incredible legacy in its 21 years. The Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year awards have built on to that legacy, helping to increase the prestige of the program and achieve a reputation among young athletes as the premier honor in high school sports.
2006 GATORADE HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETE OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER
Tina Charles: Tinas dominance in the paint and overall leadership propelled perennial powerhouse Christ the King to its second straight undefeated season, New York State Federation Class AA championship and No. 1 national ranking by USA Today. Charles led Christ the King to victories over five nationally ranked teams this season, including two wins over intracity rival Murray Bergtraum. Tina will play for the University of Connecticut and Hall of Fame Coach Geno Auriemma this fall.
Points of Interest
Averaged 26.5 points, 14.8 rebounds and 5.2 blocked shots per game in 2005-06
National Player of the Year Gatorade, Womens Basketball Coaches Association, USAToday, PARADE
McDonalds All-American (Morgan Wooten Award winner)
2006 Miss Basketball New York State
Named New York City Player of the Year by Newsday, the Daily News and the New York Post
2005 Nike Tournament of Champions MVP
Career stats include 1,750 points 1,224 rebounds, and 438 blocks
82-2 record as a varsity player
Led the U.S. to the gold medal at the 2006 FIBA Americas Under-18 Championship for Women
2006 GATORADE HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETE OF THE YEAR AWARD NOMINEES
The 2005-06 Gatorade National Players of the Year (see below) representing five male and five female sports were nominees for the Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year Awards.
Riverside High School
Penn State University
Ben Davis High School
Christ the King Regional High School
University of Connecticut
Keller High School
Track & Field
Ridgeland High School
Ridgeland HS (Sr.)
Springdale High School
University of Arkansas
Portage Central High School
Lawrence North High School
The Ohio State University
Highland Park High School
Los Angeles Dodgers Org.
Track & Field
California High School
(San Ramon, CA)
PAST GATORADE HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETE OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNERS
Former winners of Gatorade High School Male and Female Athlete of the Year honors include:
Male: LeBron James / Basketball (Arkron, OH / Cleveland Cavaliers)
Female: Allyson Felix / Track & Field (Los Angeles, CA / USA Track & Field)
Male: Dwight Howard / Basketball (Atlanta, GA / Orlando Magic)
Female: Candace Parker / Basketball (Naperville, IL / University of Tennessee)
Male: Greg Paulus / Football (Syracuse, NY / Duke University)
Female: Cynthia Barboza / Volleyball (Long Beach, CA / Stanford University)
For more information on the Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year Awards and the Gatorade Player of the Year program, visit /playeroftheyear.