THE WINNER: Hannah Long
School: Eureka (Mo.)
Athletic achievement: The distance runner won three individual state championships this spring and led the Wildcats to a 17th-place finish as a team at the Class 4 state meet. Long won the 800-meter run with a time of 2:11.06, the 1600-meter run in 4:49.53 and ran the opening leg for the 4×800-meter relay quartet that broke the tape in 9:21.01. A 2013 first-team all-state selection, she was a dual-event winner at the Kansas Relays, capturing the 800 in 2:12.81 and the 1600 in 4:49.95.
Academic excellence: Long has maintained a 4.0 GPA.
Exemplary character: An elected member of her school’s student council, she has volunteered locally on behalf of the Special Needs Soccer Association (SPENSA) and has helped collect canned goods for families in need.
“Hannah Long has served the running community in Eureka and throughout Missouri about as well as a high school athlete can,” said Neal Blackburn, head coach at Rock Bridge (Columbia, Mo.). “It’s hard not to root for her because of the way she carries herself. She lets her running speak for itself and she never demands the spotlight. Instead she just focuses on making herself the best she can be.”
THE FUTURE: Long will be a junior next year.