GatoradeÂ® National Boys Soccer Player of the Year: Luis Rendon
MIDLOTHIAN, Va., May 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — In its 26th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with ESPN RISE, today announced Luis Rendon of Cosby High School (Midlothian, VA) as its 2010-11 Gatorade National Boys Soccer Player of the Year. Rendon was surprised with the news in his art class by former MLS All-Star Alecko Eskandarian, who earned Gatorade National Boys Soccer Player of the Year honors in 1999-00.
“When I received the award in 2000, it was such a pivotal moment for me as an athlete. I’m grateful to be a part of this moment for Luis, who is truly a phenomenal student-athlete on and off the field,” said Eskandarian, a Hermann Trophy winner, three-time All-American, and the ACC Rookie of the Year in 2000 for the University of Virginia. “Gatorade has been on the sidelines fueling athletic performance for years, so to be recognized by a brand that understands the game and truly helps athletes perform is a huge honor for these kids.”
As the recipient of the 229th Gatorade National Player of the Year trophy to be awarded since 1985, Rendon becomes the first student-athlete from the state of Virginia to earn Gatorade National Boys Soccer Player of the Year honors. Only eight other Virginians have earned Gatorade National Player of the Year recognition in any sport–highlighted by retired NBA superstar Alonzo Mourning of Indian River (1987-88) and Arizona Diamondback’s right fielder Justin Upton of Great Bridge (2004-05).
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Rendon as the nation’s best high school boys soccer player. A national advisory panel comprised of sport-specific experts and sports journalists helped select Rendon from nearly 392,000 boys soccer players nationwide. Rendon is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade Male High School Athlete of the Year award, to be presented at a special ceremony prior to The ESPY Awards in July.
The 5-foot-10 junior forward led the Titans to a 13-0 record and the Dominion District regular-season title entering last night’s regular-season finale. Rendon scored 16 goals and passed for 13 assists through 12 games, sitting out the final two games of the regular season with a minor injury. He already owns the school record with 38 career goals entering postseason play. He has also recorded 37 assists in three varsity seasons. A 2009 U.S. Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program Winter Interregional All-Star and a 2010 Group AAA Second Team All-State selection, Rendon is a member of the U.S. Soccer Federation Under-18 Men’s National Team Player Pool.
Rendon has maintained a B+ average in the classroom. He has volunteered locally at Richmond’s Lynmore Nursing Home, delivering mail, meals and singing songs for residents. He has also donated his time on behalf of the US Marine Corps Toys for Tots Foundation and US Youth Soccer TOPSoccer, a community-based training and team-placement program for young athletes with disabilities. A member of his school’s Varsity Club, Rendon has also served as a youth soccer coach in association with his FC Richmond Magic club program and on behalf of Non-Stop Soccer camps. A native of Colombia, Rendon arrived in the U.S. at age 9 and earned his American citizenship in February, 2010.
“Luis’ ability to score goals is amazing,” said Dave Amsler, Rendon’s club coach with FC Richmond Magic. “He has a calming effect on the game and his skill level is very high. He’s just not your typical American player. He’s a very elusive player. He just brings something totally different to the game.”
Rendon has verbally committed to play soccer on an athletic scholarship at Duke University beginning in the fall of 2012. He will join the USSF U-18 squad on a trip to Portugal later this month, where the Americans will play international friendly matches against Holland, Portugal and Finland.
“Without question, Luis is deserving of recognition as the nation’s best high school boys soccer player based on his statistics on the field and the impact his accomplishments have had on Cosby’s success,” said Gatorade Senior Vice President of Sports Marketing Jennifer Storms. “But he is also a shining example to peers and aspiring young athletes of what a leader and a student-athlete should be. He represents everything we hope for in a Gatorade Player of the Year recipient.”
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 ESPN RISE and the Gatorade high school sports leadership team, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
Former notable Gatorade National Players of the Year include:
- Five-time NBA All-Star Dwight Howard
- WNBA Most Valuable Player Candace Parker
- Super Bowl Most Valuable Player Peyton Manning
- Two-time Beach Volleyball Gold Medalist Kerri Walsh
For more information on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of former winners, and future announcement dates, visit the Gatorade Player of the Year web site at http://playeroftheyear.gatorade.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GatoradePOY or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Gatorade.
ALL-TIME GATORADE NATIONAL BOYS SOCCER PLAYERS OF THE YEAR YEAR NAME HIGH SCHOOL STATUS Cosby High School/ 2010-11 Luis Rendon Midlothian, VA High School Junior Dearborn High School/ Attended Univ. of 2009-10 Soony Saad Dearborn, MI Michigan 2008-09 Dillon Powers Plano Senior/Plano, TX U. of Notre Dame McDonough School/Owings 2007-08 Chris Agorsor Mills, MD Philadelphia Union Brayan West Orange HS/West Orange, 2006-07 Martinez NJ Puebla FC 2005-06 Eric Alexander Portage Central/Portage, MI FC Dallas Becamex BÃƒnh D??ng 2004-05 Lee Nguyen Plano East Senior/Plano, TX FC Wilbraham & Monson New England 2003-04 Patrick Phelan Acad./Wilbraham, MA Revolution 2002-03 Greg Dalby Poway/Poway, CA Charlotte Eagles Capistrano Valley/Mission 2001-02 Jordan Harvey Viejo, CA Philadelphia Union 2000-01 Ned Grabavoy Lincoln Way/New Lenox, IL Real Salt Lake Alecko Semi-Retired from 1999-00 Eskandarian Bergen Catholic/Oradell, NJ MLS 1998-99 Kyle Martino Staples, Westport/CT Retired from MLS 1997-98 Nick Downing Eastlake/Redmond, WA Charleston Battery 1996-97 Nick Garcia Bishop Lynch/Dallas, TX Toronto FC Marquette University/ 1995-96 Andy Kirk Milwaukee, WI Retired from MLS Pierre U. of Maryland 1994-95 Venditti Jonathon Law/Milford, CT Grad Andriy Kenston High/Chagrin Falls, U. of Virginia 1993-94 Shapowal OH Grad U. of Virginia 1992-93 Mike Fisher Batavia/Batavia, IL Grad Saint Louis U. 1991-92 Matt McKeon De Smet Jesuit/St. Louis, MO Grad St. Benedict's Prep/Newark, 1990-91 Claudio Reyna NJ Retired from MLS U. of N. Carolina 1989-90 Todd Haskins Howard/Ellicott City, MD Grad Chris 1988-89 Henderson Cascade/Everett, WA Retired from MLS U. of Virginia 1987-88 Lyle Yorks E.O. Smith/Storrs, CT Grad 1986-87 John Gwin Boise/Boise, ID Duke U. Grad So. Illinois U. 1985-86 Kevin Hundelt Aquinas-Mercy/Hazelwood, MO Grad