FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASECHICAGO (March 22, 2012) —
Contact: Adam Woullard (312-729-3627)
In its 27th year of honoring the nation's best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with ESPNHS, today announced Tyler Lewis
of Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.)
as its 2011-12 Gatorade Virginia Boys Basketball Player of the Year. Lewis is the sixth Gatorade Virginia Boys Basketball Player of the Year to be chosen from Oak Hill Academy.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the court, distinguishes Lewis as Virginia's best high school boys basketball player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year award to be announced in March, Lewis joins an elite alumni association of past state boys basketball award winners, including Dwight Howard (2003-04, SW Atlanta Christian Academy, Ga.), Chauncey Billups (1993-94 & 1994-95, George Washington HS, Colo.), Jason Kidd (1991-92, St. Joseph Notre Dame HS, Calif.), Paul Pierce (1994-95, Inglewood HS, Calif.) and Chris Bosh (2001-02, Lincoln HS, Texas).
The 5-foot-11, 165-pound senior guard averaged 12.0 points, 7.9 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists this past season, leading the Warriors to a perfect 44-0 record. A McDonald's All-American Game selection, Lewis was the MVP of the Les Schwab Invitational Tournament in December. A transfer from Forsyth Country Day School in Lewisville, N.C., he departed as that school's career scoring leader with 1,927 career points.
Lewis has maintained an A average in the classroom. He has volunteered locally at an area food bank and as a youth basketball coach in his hometown of Lewisville, N.C.
"Tyler Lewis made everything go," said Sean Christensen, head coach at Lincoln (Ore.) High. "If they needed a basket, he either created a shot for himself or found somebody coming off of a screen. He is really a prototypical point guard who can handle and make his teammates better players."
Lewis has signed a National Letter of Intent to play basketball on an athletic scholarship at North Carolina State University beginning 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 ESPNHS 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.
Lewis joins Gatorade Virginia Boys Basketball Players of the Year James McAdoo (2009-10 & 2010-11, Norfolk Christian High School), Keith 'Tiny' Gallon (2008-09, Oak Hill Academy), Brandon Jennings (2007-08, Oak Hill Academy), and Nolan Smith (2006–07, Oak Hill Academy) among the state's list of former award winners.
To keep up to date on the latest happenings, become a fan of Gatorade Player of the Year on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. For more on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of past winners, and the announcement of the Gatorade National Player of the Year, visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com