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U.S. high school phenom Addy Ritzenhein awarded Gatorade Athlete of the Year

Ritzenhein was presented the award by three-time award-winner and NCAA champion Katelyn Tuohy

Gatorade Athlete of the Year Photo by: Joe Greer

U.S. high school distance runner Addy Ritzenhein was awarded the Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year on Tuesday, recognizing her as the top U.S. high school female athlete. Ritzenhein was nominated for the accolade after winning the 2023 U.S. Nike Cross Country Nationals in December, following in the footsteps of her father, Dathan Ritzenhein.

The award was presented by none other than three-time Gatorade Athlete of the Year winner and four-time NCAA champion Katelyn Tuohy, who recently turned pro and signed a contract with Adidas.

addy ritzenhein and katelyn tuohy
2023-24 Gatorade Athlete of the Year winner Addy Ritzenhein and former three-time winner Katelyn Tuohy. Photo: Joe Greer

This honour celebrates top high school athletes in the U.S. for their excellence in sports, academics and community involvement. Ritzenhein joins a prestigious list of former female runners who have received the award, including Tuohy (2019-20, 2018-19, and 2017-18) and U.S. marathoner Jordan Hasay (2008-09).

Athletic prowess runs in the Ritzenhein family; Dathan won Gatorade Athlete of the Year award twice (1999-01) and represented Team USA at the Olympics on three occasions. Dathan currently serves as the head coach of On Athletics Club, coaching notable athletes like Boston Marathon champion Hellen Obiri and world championship 1,500m finalist and American mile record holder Yared Nuguse. Addy clocked a personal-best 16:44.9 for 5K this fall and was ranked as the #1 sophomore (Grade 10) girls high school XC athlete in the U.S., according to MileSplit.

Addy and her dad now join an exclusive club of three father-child duos who have become national champions at the high school level. Addy will undoubtedly be a name to watch in the next two years as she approaches the NCAA level.

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