High school athletes of the year

Standout performances by these athletes led to individual and team success during the 2011-2012 school year:


Matt Olson, Parkview: The senior pitcher and first baseman batted .407 with 11 home runs and 52 RBI in leading Parkview to its second consecutive Class AAAAA title. He hit the game-winning home run in the deciding game of the championship series. Olson was 12-1 with a 1.64 ERA as a pitcher. He has signed to play baseball at Vanderbilt University.

Basketball (boys)

Tony Parker, Miller Grove: The 6-foot-9 senior forward averaged 16.6 points, 11.0 rebounds and 3.0 blocked shots in leading Miller Grove to its fourth consecutive Class AAAA championship. Parker was the only Miller Grove player to start on all four of those teams. He has signed to play basketball at UCLA.

Basketball (girls)

Pachiyaanna Roberts, McEachern: The 5-foot-11 senior averaged 17.9 points, 10.5 rebounds, 3.8 steals, 2.4 assists and 1.7 blocked shots in leading the Indians to a 33-0 record and their first state championship. McEachern won the Class AAAAA final by 33 points, the most lopsided championship game ever in the state’s highest classification. Roberts has signed to play basketball at Syracuse.


Taylor Swinney, Northgate: The senior was a key member of four state championship teams at Northgate, which this year became the first school to win five consecutive cheerleading titles. Swinney, who had the team’s highest grade-point average, has been a member of the ACE All-Stars and helped coach a special needs team at the company. She plans to cheer at the University of West Georgia.

Cross country (boys)

Josh Brickell, Peachtree Ridge: The junior had the best time of the day at the state meet with a 15:40.68 to capture the Class AAAAA individual title for the second consecutive season and helped the Lions to a fifth-place finish in the team standings. Brickell also earned his second consecutive title in the 3,200-meter run at the state track meet this spring.

Cross country (girls)

Grace Tinkey, First Presbyterian: The junior persevered through an injury-plagued season and won her second consecutive Class A individual title at the state meet with a time of 17:59.27, leading her team to a third-place finish. Her time was 45 seconds faster than the next-best time in any classification. Tinkey was the GISA Class AAA individual champion in her eighth- and ninth-grade years.


Robert Nkemdiche, Grayson: The junior defensive end and running back had 18 sacks and was the cornerstone of a defense that allowed only 38 yards rushing per game. Nkemdiche also rushed for 528 yards and 17 touchdowns in leading Grayson to its first state title. He is rated by many as the No. 1 college football recruit in the country for 2013.

Golf (boys)

Lee McCoy, Habersham Central: The senior transferred from Florida to Habersham Central during the summer and immediately made his presence felt. He won five regular-season tournaments and the region title and shot a 68 to win the Class AAAA championship at Jones Creek Golf Club in Augusta. McCoy has signed to play at the University of Georgia.

Golf (girls)

Mariah Stackhouse, North Clayton: The senior made her final high school tournament a memorable one, shooting a 67 to win the Class AAAA championship at Bartram Trail in Augusta. Stackhouse, who has signed to play at Stanford University, is an American Junior Golf Association All-America and has twice helped Georgia win the USGA Women’s Team Championship.


Beth Roberts, Tift County: The junior scored a 38.75 at the all-classification state meet to win the all-around title and lead the Blue Devils to their second consecutive team championship. Roberts, the daughter of Tift County coach Jodi Roberts, won individual titles on the uneven bars, floor exercise and balance beam and finished third in the vault. Tift had a team score of 112.125.

Lacrosse (boys)

Colin Massa, Lambert: The senior defenseman played the most minutes on the team and helped the Longhorns (22-0) win a second consecutive Class A-AAAA championship and run the nation’s longest active winning streak to 42 games. The U.S. Lacrosse All-American was invited to try out for the U.S. National team this month. Massa will play next year on scholarship at Delaware.

Lacrosse (girls)

Amanda Lockwood, Milton: The senior had 45 goals and 18 assists as the Eagles won a third consecutive Class AAAAA championship and seventh in eight years. The U.S. Lacrosse All-American was the team’s three-time MVP and helped Milton run its record to 42-0 in three seasons against Georgia opponents. Lockwood has signed to play lacrosse at Vanderbilt University.


Charles Tritt, Lumpkin County: The senior had an overall score of 390.6 to win the individual all-classification championship at the state meet. He led the Indians to their first team state championship and became the second Lumpkin County athlete in six years to win the individual title. Tritt plans to continue shooting next year at North Georgia College & State University.

Soccer (boys)

Bakawsu Kinteh, Lambert: The Region 7-AAAA player of the year scored 44 goals and assisted on 13 others for the state-champion Longhorns, who as a team scored 100 goals in 23 games. The junior scored four goals in the Longhorns’ 5-0 victory over Greenbrier in the Class AAAA final, completing the state’s only undefeated season.

Soccer (girls)

Emily Sonnett, Fellowship Christian: The senior had 25 goals and 12 assists for the Class A runner-up Paladins. She scored 113 goals and had 41 assists in her career for a team that had a four-year record of 60-10-2. Sonnett, an ESPN first-team all-American and a member of the Under-18 Women’s National Team, has signed to play soccer at the University of Virginia.


Geri Ann Glasco, Oconee County: The senior hit .564 with a state-record 24 home runs and 62 RBI for Class AAA champion Oconee County. As a pitcher, Glasco was 19-0 with a 0.50 ERA and 213 strikeouts. She was 62-8 with a 0.91 ERA and hit 47 home runs for her high school career. Glasco has signed to play softball at the University of Georgia.

Swimming (boys)

Matias Koski, Northview: The senior set state records in defending his AAAAA titles in the 200-yard freestyle (1:36.15) and 500 free (4:19.11). He was a member of the state-winning 400 free relay team, which set a state record (3:06.26), and holds the state record in the 100 free (44.66), Koski, Finland’s national champion in the 100- and 400-meter freestyles, has signed to swim at the University of Georgia.

Swimming (girls)

Rachael Dudley, Mill Creek: The senior won her third Class AAAAA championship in the 100-yard butterfly (54.46 seconds) and won the 100 backstroke (55.39), helping the Hawks to a seventh-place finish at the state meet. She holds the Gwinnett County records in both events. Dudley has received an appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy.

Tennis (boys)

Zachary Kennedy, Westlake: Kennedy, a junior, was 18-0 at No. 1 singles in leading Westlake to the Class AAAAA final. Kennedy’s career record at Westlake is 40-1. He is ranked No. 51 nationally among high school junior boys by TennisRecruiting.net.

Tennis (girls)

Kourtney Keegan, Blessed Trinity: The junior was 19-0 at No. 1 singles for Blessed Trinity, which won its fourth consecutive Class AA championship. Keegan is 50-0 in her high school career. She is the No. 1 high school junior girls player in Georgia, according to TennisRecruiting.net. Keegan has committed to play tennis at the University of Florida.

Track and field (boys)

Tyreek Hill, Coffee: The senior became the first high school athlete in Georgia to run under 21 seconds in the 200 meters when he went 20.94 at the Class AAAAA championships. His time of 10.44 in the 100 meters also was the fastest at the state meet. Hill plans to attend Garden City Community College in Kansas to play football and run track.

Track and field (girls)

Mimieux Land, Monroe: The senior helped lead the Tornadoes’ powerhouse program to four consecutive Class AAA titles. She won the high jump and long jump, ran a leg on the first-place 4×400 relay team and finished third in the triple jump at this year’s state meet. She finished her career with 12 individual state titles. Land has signed to run at Clemson University.


Mara Green, Eagle’s Landing Christian: The 6-foot-2 senior middle blocker was credited with 373 kills in leading her team to the Class AA-A championship, ELCA’s first state title in the sport. Green had 29 kills and 13 blocks in the 3-2 victory over Greater Atlanta Christian in the final. Green has signed to play volleyball at Florida State University.


Spencer Jones, Darlington: The senior 152-pounder became the state’s 25th wrestler to win four state championships, pinning all three of his opponents at this year’s traditional meet. He was 40-1 this season and finished his career with a 163-9 record, with only three losses to Georgia opponents. Jones plans to attend the University of West Georgia and pursue a football career.

12 comments Add your comment

[...] High school athletes of the yearAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog)Mariah Stackhouse, North Clayton: The senior made her final high school tournament a memorable one, shooting a 67 to win the Class AAAA championship at Bartram Trail in Augusta. Stackhouse, who has signed to play at Stanford University, is an American … [...]


June 9th, 2012
1:20 pm

AJC what ever happened to coverage of the Georgia Olympics? I know that region situation between McEachern and Hillgrove got ugly, but what about the other schools who want their champions acknowledged?

Max Sizemore

June 9th, 2012
2:05 pm

Tyreek Hill also clocked the second-fastest prep 200 meters in U.S. history at the Golden South May 26 with a wind-legal 20.14. From ESPN:

In a meet loaded with established sprint stars from Florida and Texas, and with two Dream Mile tickets to New York on the line, it was a unheralded senior from Georgia in his first out-of-state big meet that stole the show at the 36th Golden South Classic in Orlando.

Coffee County senior Tyreek Hill shocked the prep track world in the 200 with a mind-boggling 20.14. Riding a legal 1.8 wind, Hill became the second fastest half-lapper in history, missing Roy Martin’s 1985 USR by just .01. It was pretty heady stuff for someone who came into the meet with just a 20.94 PR.

Even more amazing is the fact that even if Hill hadn’t started the 200, his day had already been a smashing success. In the 100, he began the day with a US#1 10.19 that was shocking by itself. It lowered his wind-legal PR of 10.44 (he also carried a 10.32 nwi coming in). Then in the 200 prelim, he led qualifiers again with a US#1 20.45.

In the 100 final, however, he was defeated by defending Golden South champ Lavonte Whitfield, 10.38 to 10.45. Still not bad at all, but some might have thought that Hill had used up the gas tank for the night. Not so, as in the furlong he nearly made history.

Hill has signed with Garden City Community College in Kansas for football.

[...] High school athletes of the yearAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog)… title and shot a 68 to win the Class AAAA championship at Jones Creek Golf Club in Augusta. McCoy has signed to play at the University of Georgia. Mariah Stackhouse, North Clayton: The senior made her final high school tournament a memorable one, … [...]


June 10th, 2012
6:37 am

Tyreek Hill of Coffee also wond the 5A Broad jump. Besting 2nd place by almost one foot.

Too bad Coffee’s coaching staff didn’t run an offense that would have taken advantage of his talent.

Coffee has generally had the athletes. It is sure going to be interesting to see new Coach take them to the river.

South Ga

June 10th, 2012
10:50 am

Byron Buxton of Appling County High in Baxley goes # 2 in the MLB Draft and he is not the best player. Huh


June 10th, 2012
8:33 pm

Byron Buxton strikes out 18 to lead his team to the AA Championship and bats over .500 for the year. Oh and he goes #2 in the MLB Draft. No Big deal. Another classic example of ajc’s north ga bias.

Powder Springs Dad

June 11th, 2012
12:44 pm

I wish I had the opportunity to see Byron Buxton play, however, I saw Matt Olson play six times. The kid is legitimate. Hard to make an argument against him.

[...] year the Atlanta Journal Constitution names high school athletes in each sport as its “Atletes of the Year” – this year, the list included two Roswell area school sports [...]


June 13th, 2012
8:39 am

Finalists for The World-Herald’s Nebraska high school athletes of the year. Previously announced were Andy Janovich of Gretna and Alicia Armstrong of Beatrice. The winners will be announced Sunday:

Jed Fenske, Sargent

The Nebraska wrestling recruit, who won Class C wrestling titles as a junior and senior for Sargent/Burwell, was a two-time all-state football player who rushed for 2,036 yards as Sargent won Eight Man-2. Won the Class D long jump and ran on two winning relays in track.

Alyssa Frauendorfer, Humphrey

A Wayne State volleyball recruit, the junior was Class D-1 all-state in volleyball (441 kills) and basketball (24.5 points per game) and won four Class D individual events (long jump, triple jump, 200, 400) at the state track meet.


June 28th, 2012
11:14 am

Congratulations Zachary Kennedy! Westlake Tennis is tops in the state. You guys did an outstanding job returning to the finals. 2013 will bring the title at last. Again congrats Zachary!!!

[...] forward Pachiyaana Roberts has been named the girls’ basketball Player of the Year by the Atlanta Journal Constitution. The Powder Springs, Ga. native has already been named Miss Basketball for the state of Georgia and [...]