The Gatorade State Girls Track & Field Athletes of the Year were selected based on athletic production and impact in the 2015-16 season. Each winner also demonstrated high academic achievement and exemplary personal character, including volunteerism, sportsmanship and community leadership.
For the complete list of Gatorade State Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Chloe Akin-Otiko
School: Bellevue West (Bellevue, Neb.)
Athletic achievement: The sprinter won three individual state championships this spring and led the Thunderbirds to a fifth-place finish as a team at the Class A state meet. A four-time Gatorade Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year, Akin-Otiko swept the sprints for the fourth consecutive year, winning the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.76 seconds, the 200-meter dash in 24.11 and the 400-meter run in 56.09, capturing all-class gold with the fastest times in all competitive classifications. A four-time First Team All-State selection, she was unbeaten against Nebraska competition in 2016.
Academic excellence: Akin-Otiko has maintained a 5.41 GPA on a 5-point scale.
Exemplary character: A member of the National Honor Society, she has volunteered locally on behalf of her church youth group.
“Chloe Akin-Otiko is an extremely talented runner who has accomplished historic feats,” said Greg Golka, head coach at Marian High. “She has worked extremely hard to get where she is. She is also humble and kind to other competitors. All of us in the coaching community are in awe of what she has done on the track and we are proud that she is a product of Nebraska high school track & field.”
THE FUTURE: Akin-Otiko has signed a National Letter of Intent to compete on an athletic scholarship at the University of Kansas this fall.