PRESS RELEASE | In its 39th year of honoring the nation's most elite high school athletes, Gatorade today announced Porter Middaugh of Battle Mountain High School is the 2023-24 Gatorade Colorado Boys Cross Country Player of the Year. Middaugh is the first Gatorade Colorado Boys Cross Country Player of the Year to be chosen from Battle Mountain High School.
The award, which celebrates the nation's top high school athletes for excellence on the field, in the classroom and in the community, distinguishes Middaugh as Colorado's best high school boys cross country player. From CEOs and coaches to star athletes, Gatorade Player of the Year winners showcase the power of sport, touting an all-star group of alumni that includes Lukas Verzbicas (2010-11 & 2009-10, Carl Sandburg High School, Ill.) and Edward Cheserek (2012-13, St. Benedict's Preparatory School, N.J.).
The 6-foot-2, 140-pound senior raced to a sixth-place finish at Nike Cross Nationals Final in a time of 15:25.2 this past season to earn First Team All-America honors. Middaugh also finished fourth at the Class 4A State Championship with a time of 15:28.8 while racing at altitude. In winning the 2023 Warrior Lincoln Park Classic, he clocked a personal-best time of 14:38.7.
Middaugh has volunteered locally on behalf of the Salvation Army. He has also donated his time each summer assisting with the organizing of the Vail Recreation District's trail-running series.
Middaugh has maintained a 4.38 weighted GPA in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to run on scholarship at Arizona State University this fall.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.
The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which leverages experts including coaches, scouts, media and others as sources to help evaluate and determine the state winners in each sport. Middaugh joins recent Gatorade Colorado Boys Cross Country Players of the Year Christian Groendyk (2022-23, Fort Collins High School), Zane Bergen (2021-22, Niwot High School), Parker Wolfe (2020-21, Cherry Creek High School) and Cole Sprout (2019-20, Valor Christian High School), among the state's list of former award winners.
As part of Gatorade's commitment to breaking down barriers in sport, every Player of the Year also receives a grant to donate to a social impact partner. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners' grants have totaled more than $4.9 million across more than 1,600 organizations.
To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate studentathletes, visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com or follow us on social media on Facebook at facebook.com/GatoradePOY, Instagram at instagram.com/Gatorade and Twitter at twitter.com/Gatorade