Meet the 2020 finalists for the Detroit Athletic Club’s Michigan High School Athlete of the Year awards
Late last week, STATE CHAMPS! helped the Detroit Athletic Club unveil its finalists for the 2020 Michigan High School Athlete of the Year awards.
With a record number of applicants (112), the competition was fierce, but these athletes are all used to that.
The award winners earn $5,000 scholarships from the DAC, while the remaining finalists get $1,000 scholarships.
To be eligible for the award, student athletes had to be a member of the senior class, with demonstrable excellence in athletics in MHSAA sanctioned sports, as well as a grade-point average of 3.0 or higher, and a resume of citizenship (school leadership, community involvement and volunteerism).
Last year’s winners were: Rickea Jackson (Detroit Edison basketball) and Kendel Taylor (Madison Heights Bishop Foley football, wrestling, lacrosse and track and field).
The DAC awards began in 1996, and other past winners include:
Monroe St. Mary CC Meghan Beaubien (U-M softball), Detroit U-D Jesuit’s Cassius Winston (MSU men’s basketball), Fowlerville’s Adam Coon (U-M wrestling), Detroit Country Day’s Shane Battier (Duke basketball/NBA) and Canton’s Allison Schmitt (Georgia swimming/Olympics).
This year’s finalists are below.
Kathryn Ackerman, Grand Haven
Resume: 2017, 2018 and 2019 MISCA Dream Teamer, state record-holder in the 200 individual medley, 2019 Junior National Champion (400 IM), five career individual titles.
Gabrielle Elliott, Detroit Edison
Resume: Three-time state champion, 2020 BCAM Miss Basketball, ranked the No. 6 wing recruit in the nation by ESPN.
Avery Fenchel, Novi
Resume: Two-time state champion (2019 team was ranked No. 1 in the nation), 2019 All-American, 2019 MIHSSCA Dream Teamer
College: Ball State
Sophie Housey, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett
Resume: Two-time state champion in 2018 (100 and 200 freestyle), 2018 Dream Teamer, owns CHSL backstroke record, 2018 MISCA Dream Teamer
Jess Mruzik, Farmington Hills Mercy
Resume: 2019 D1 state champion, Captain of USA Volleyball National Team, 2019 U18 World Championships Tourney MVP, 2019 Michigan Miss Volleyball, 2020 Gatorade National Volleyball Player of the Year
College: Michigan (early enrollee)
Gabrianna Salo, Escanaba
Resume: Two-time state champion, three-time first-team all-stater, 2019 STATE CHAMPS! Total Softball Player of the Year (2018 runner-up)
Luke Baylis, Clarkston
Resume: 2019 Mr. Tennis, D1 state champion at No. 1 singles in 2019, 29-1 record as a senior, four-time first-team all-state honors.
College: Michigan State
Hunter Hollenbeck, Okemos
Resume: State champion in 2018 and 2019, broke a 38-year-old pool record at regionals
Jason Kemp, Troy Athens
Sport: Soccer, baseball
Resume: 2019 D1 state champion (15 shutouts), 2019 All-American, 2019 MIHSSCA Dream Teamer
Cameron Martinez, Muskegon
Resume: Two-time D3 runner-up, 11th on MHSAA all-time rushing list, 2019 STATE CHAMPS! Mr. Football, 2018 and 2019 MLive Media Player of the Year, 2019 Gatorade Michigan Football Player of the Year
College: Ohio State
Carter Solomon, Plymouth
Sport: Cross country, track and field
Resume: 2018 D1 team state champion, 2019 D1 cross country individual state champion (unbeaten as a senior in 13 races), 2nd at 2019 Foot Locker Cross Country Championships, posted the state’s fastest 5K time in 2019.
College: Notre Dame
Dylan Targgart, Coldwater
Sport: Track and field
Resume: 2019 and 2019 D2 state champion in both discus and shot put, state record holder in shot put for D2 (66-feet-7.5)
College: South Carolina