King Philip senior Mike Griffin was today named the state’s Gatorade Runner of the Year for Cross-Country. It is the first time that a KP athlete has received this honor in any sport. Griffin is also a finalist for the national runner of the year award, which will be announced this month.
He is the third Hockomock runner to receive this honor, following Mansfield Patrick McGowan (2010) and Oliver Ames’ Mike Moverman (2009). Griffin is the 19th Hock athlete to be named a Gatorade Player of the Year in any sport and the first since North Attleboro’s Meg Colleran won for softball in 2014.
Per the press release from Gatorade, “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 Griffin as Massachusetts’ best high school boys cross country runner.
Griffin won the Hockomock League Championship meet at the Wrentham Development Center for the second year in a row, winning the race by 18 seconds ahead of Franklin’s Tyler Brogan. The University of Tennessee-commit concluded his impressive four-year cross-country career by winning the Div. 1 state meet in a time of 16:06, which was seven seconds faster than the second-place finisher.
He also finished eighth at the Foot Locker East Regional meet and then 36th in the national championships.
KP boys cross-country coach Chris Elgar said, “Mike’s Gatorade AOY recognition to me reflects the culmination of hard work and persistent determination since day one in August of 2016. What may be over looked in all of this is how humble and selfless he is.
“He is loved by his teammates and respected by his opponents. He is so deserving of every accolade that he has earned. Personally it has been an absolute honor working with him.”
In addition to his success in cross-country, Griffin also won the 1,000 meters at this past weekend’s league indoor track championships and ran the final leg for KP’s first place 4×800 relay team.
As part of the Gatorade award, Griffin will be able to donate $1,000 to a local or national youth sports organization of his choice.
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