Emily Edwards continues to receive accolades for her stellar cross country campaign.
The latest came Thursday when the Fort Myers High School senior was selected as the 2013-14 Gatorade Florida Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year, the first ever Green Wave runner so honored.
“I would say it’s a great send-off to my senior season, said Edwards, who won the Class 3A individual state championship this past season in 18 minutes, 9:24 seconds. “I’m really honored that I was chosen.
“We have a great team and Fort Myers and all the runners who have competed there have been great runners. So to be the first from the school to win this award definitely makes it more special.”
Edwards said she learned of the award from Gulf Coast High School runner and friend Caroline Barlow, the Class 3A state runner-up and Edwards’ future teammate at the University of Alabama.
“I knew I had been nominated but I didn’t know when it was going to be announced,” Edwards said. “So I had no idea until she told me. I went online and my name popped up. It was a really cool way to find out.”
The 5-foot-10 Edwards also won Class 3A district and regional titles, the Southwest Florida Invitational and the Lee County Athletic Conference Crown. She finished second at the FSU Pre-State Invitational and the flrunners.com Invitational.
Edwards, who maintains a perfect 4.0 GPA in the classroom, said she’s learning toward majoring in physical therapy at Alabama.
Edwards joins former Community School of Naples runner Kathryn Fluehr (2009-10 and 2010-11) as the only other Southwest Florida runner to win the cross country award since its inception in 2007.