Maddie Nossek and Taylor Petersen are being recognized as two of Arizona’s finest high school athletes.
The awards arrived last week in the form of both receiving all-state honorable mention status from the Arizona Republic newspaper sports staff.
Petersen, a freshman last school year, was named a 1A-3A softball HM and Nossek, who graduated last week with the Payson High Class of 2010, was chosen in track and field, more specifically, the high jump.
Petersen’s laurels arrive on the heels of her being named to the 3A All-East softball team and all state by the Arizona Coaches’ Association.
Petersen led the Longhorns in hitting, with a .409 average. While that was one of the best marks in the East region, the powerful frosh was best known for slugging a school-record 12 home runs. In a regular-season-ending win over Round Valley, she slapped two home runs, one of which was a grand slam and the other a three-run blast. She finished the day with eight RBIs.
Although Nossek was recognized for her high jumping feats, she actually excelled in a number of track and field events including long jump, 200 meters, 100 meters, 800 meters and shot put.
In the high jump, Nossek leaped 5 feet, 6 1/2 inches, which was the best mark in the state until late in the year when Rachel Orr of Thatcher went 5 feet, 7 inches.
At the 3A East regionals, Nossek long jumped 17 feet, 5 1/2 inches, which was the best in the conference this season.
Nossek also had a shot put mark of 34 feet, 1 inch — a distance that ranks eighth among 3A competitors. In the 800 meters, Nossek turned in a 2:22.04 that was 3A’s second best.
The ex-PHS star also turned in the fourth fastest time (12.84) this season in the 100 meters.
Also in the Arizona honors doled out by the Phoenix newspaper, Winslow’s Becky Barris was named the “Small School Coach of the Year” for leading the Bulldogs to a 34-2 season and the state championship.
Small school “Player of the Year” honors went to Jen Yazzi of Winslow.
The only East player named first or second team all-state was Snowflake infielder Tori Hill.
In baseball, no Payson High School players were honored.
Phoenix Bourgade pitcher Eric Martinez was named the “Small School Player of the Year.”