THE WINNER: Chase Harler
School: Wheeling (W.Va.) Central Catholic
Weight: 180 pounds
Athletic achievement: He had led the Maroon Knights to a 22-3 record and the Class A quarterfinals at the time of his selection. Harler was averaging 25.2 points, 6.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 1.7 blocks per contest through 25 games. A First Team All-State selection, he led his team to the 2014 Class A state title and was named to USA TODAY’s All-USA West Virginia First Team.
Academic excellence: Harler has maintained a 3.91 GPA and represents one of the state’s top academic candidates in meeting the Gatorade Award’s broad criteria.
Exemplary character: He has served as a tutor in his school and has volunteered locally on behalf of food-donation drives for the needy.
“Chase Harler can play at any level,” said Fred King, head coach at Paden City High. “He can create, he’s got good quickness, great hops, he can lock down on you defensively. He makes everybody on the floor better, and he wants the ball when the game is on the line.”
THE FUTURE: Harler will be a senior this fall.