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Hudson High School senior Ryan Kromer, pictured competing at the 2012 WIAA Division 1 Sectional race in Menomonie, has been named the 2012-13 Gatorade Wisconsin Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year. Star-Observer file photo
Hudson High School senior Ryan Kromer, pictured competing at the 2012 WIAA Division 1 Sectional race in Menomonie, has been named the 2012-13 Gatorade Wisconsin Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year. Star-Observer file photo

Hudson's Ryan Kromer named Gatorade Wisconsin Runner of Year

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sports River Falls, 54022
River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

CHICAGO -- In its 28th year of honoring the nation's best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with USA TODAY High School Sports, last week announced Ryan Kromer of Hudson High School as its 2012-13 Gatorade Wisconsin Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year.

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Kromer is the first Gatorade Wisconsin Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year to be chosen from Hudson High School.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the racecourse, distinguishes Kromer as Wisconsin's best high school boys cross country runner.

Kromer is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year award to be announced later this month.

The 5-foot-9-inch, 140-pound senior earned fifth place at the Nike Cross Nationals Heartland Regional championships with a time of 15 minutes, 32.3 seconds. A two-time First Team All-State selection, he went on finish ninth at the Nike Cross Nationals Final in 17:25. He also placed seventh at the Foot Locker Midwest Regional championships with a time of 15:08 and qualified for the national Foot Locker Cross Country Championships, where he finished eighth in 15:30,becoming one of two runners in the nation to place among the top 10 at both the Nike and Foot Locker national meets.

Kromer also raced to a Wisconsin Division 1 individual state title, breaking the tape in 15:27.17.

Kromer has maintained a 12.07 GPA (on a 12-point scale) in the classroom. A member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, he is a devoted parishioner in his church community and has volunteered on behalf of Habitat for Humanity.

"Ryan Kromer is one of the most intelligent runners I have ever coached," said Hudson head coach Don Krupa. "When you watch him in competition, you can see what he planned and how he carries out his race strategy. Even when the races don't go as planned, you can see him make adjustments to compete to the best of his abilities."

Kromer has verbally committed to an athletic scholarship at the University of Wisconsin 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.

Kromer joins an elite alumni association of past state award-winners in 12 sports, including Derek Jeter (1991-92, Kalamazoo HS, Mich.) in baseball, Candace Parker (2001-02, Naperville Central HS, Ill.) in girls' basketball, Kevin Garnett (1992-93, Maudlin HS, S.C.) in boys basketball, Abby Wambach (1997-98, Our Lady of Mercy, N.Y.) in girls' soccer and Mark Sanchez (2004-05, Mission Viejo HS, Calif.) in football.

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 www.gatorade.com/poy.

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