Information derived from New Orleans Advocate article.
Hunter Appleton '19 has been selected as the 2018-19 Gatorade Louisiana Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year, according to a Monday morning press release.
The award recognizes athletic excellence, high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character on and off the field. As the Louisiana winner, Appleton is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year award to be announced later this month.
Appleton is a 5-foot-8, 135-pound senior who won the LHSAA's Class 5A individual title last season, breaking the tape on the 3-mile course with a time of 17 minutes, 59.40 seconds while leading the Crusaders to a second-place finish as a team. Appleton clocked the fastest 3-mile (a personal-best 14:52.61) and—by 42.01 seconds—the fastest 5K (a personal-best 15:32.00) by a Louisiana runner last fall. He won seven of the eight races last fall and was also the state’s top finisher at the Nike Cross Nationals South Regional championships, crossing the line in 17th with a time of 16:25.09.
A National Merit Scholarship semifinalist, Appleton is a member of the Mu Alpha Theta mathematics honor society. He serves as a school ambassador for incoming and visiting students and has participated in the Brother Martin Literary Rally.
“Hunter Appleton is very simply the most motivated and responsible student-athlete I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with,” Brother Martin head coach Drew Haro '03 said. “His natural abilities coupled with his work ethic make for a combination found very rarely in young people his age. Hunter’s external achievements and accolades are simply tangible signs of the successes he has already reached internally. If he’d never achieved these accolades, he would still be the same excellent young man that he already is.”
Appleton has maintained a weighted 4.32 GPA in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to compete in cross country and track and field on scholarship at the University of Colorado.
Appleton joins Gatorade Louisiana Boys Cross Country Runners of the Year Adam Wise (2017-18, Fontainebleau High School), Eric Coston (2016-17, St. Paul's School), Devyn Keith (2015-16 & 2014-15, John Curtis Christian School) and Zachary Albright (2013-14, Saint Paul's School) as athletes who have won the cross country award since its inception in 2007.
As a part of Gatorade’s marketing platform “Play it Forward,” Appleton has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant to a local or national youth sports organization of his choosing.