Sports

Hill Named Gatorade Montana Cross Country Runner of the Year

Glacier sophomore took over the all-class state record and led the Wolfpack to a second-place finish as a team

Annie Hill, a sophomore state-record holder and nationally ranked runner, became the first athlete from Glacier High School to be named the Gatorade Montana Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year.

The award was announced Thursday and distinguishes Hill as the top runner in Montana. The annual award recognizes outstanding athletic excellence and high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the racecourse. She is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year award to be announced in January.

The 5-foot-2 sophomore captured the Class AA state championship this past season with a time of 16:30.7, taking over the all-class state record and leading Glacier to a second-place finish as a team. In December she was the fifth-ranked prep runner in the nation. She continued her undefeated season by winning the the Nike Northwest Regional in Boise, Idaho and the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships West Regional. She advanced to the Foot Locker national championship race in San Diego, where she placed 22nd. She entered last weekend’s race as the fifth-ranked high school runner in the nation.

Hill has maintained a 4.0 GPA in the classroom. She also performs in the school orchestra and has volunteered locally on behalf of her church youth group.

“Annie Hill may be as dedicated to the sport of cross country as anyone that I have ever seen,” said Clint May, head coach at Bozeman. “Watching her at a meet is to watch someone incredibly fierce yet remarkably friendly.”

Hill joins Gatorade Montana Girls Cross Country Runners of the Year Makena Morley (2014-15, 2013-14, 2012-13 & 2011-12, Bigfork High School), Caroline Hardin (2010-11, Bozeman High School), and Heidi Turner (2009-10, 2008-09 & 2007-08, Bozeman High School) as athletes who have won the cross country award since its inception in 2007.