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Candace Hill named Gatorade Girls Track Athlete of the Year
Candace Hill, of Rockdale County High School, holds the trophy during a press conference after being named the Gatorade National Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year, Thursday, June 25, 2015 in Conyers, GA. The award recognizes outstanding athletic excellence as well as high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. Hill became the first high school girl to break the 11-second barrier in the 100-meter dash, clocking a time of 10.98 at last week's Brooks PR meet. Photo/Gatorade, Susan Goldman, handout.

Rockdale track and academic phenom Candace Hill was named the 2014-15 Gatorade National Girls Track & Field Athlete of the Year for her exemplary performance on and off the field.

The national recognition was awarded Thursday at Rockdale County High School. (Check back later for more).

Hill, a 16-year-old rising junior at Rockdale Magnet School for Science and Technology, recently set a national prep record for the 100-meter at the Brooks PR Invitational with a time of 10.98 seconds, becoming the first high school girl to break the 11 second barrier.

She won the 200-meter dash with a state-record time of 23.05 seconds and the 100 in a state-record 11.34 at the Class 6A GHSA Track & Field State Championships in 2015. Also this year, she captured first in the 100, 200 at Taco Bell Classic; 1st in 200 at Prefontaine Classic; 1st in 100, 200 at Great Southwest Classic in 2015; 1st at Adidas Dream 100.

Hill's season-best times in the 100 and 200 rank as the nation's No. 1 performances among prep competitors in 2015.

In addition to her record setting performances on the track, the rising Magnet School junior maintains a 4.61 weighted GPA in the classroom.

She also donates her time to a variety of charity drives to help the needy and participated in holiday toy drives with separate philanthropic organizations.

She also won the 2013-14 Gatorade Girls Track and Field Athlete of the Year for the state in Georgia.

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. In addition to athletic excellence, the award recognizes academic achievement and exemplary character on and off the field.

This year celebrates the program's 30th anniversary. In that time, Gatorade has honored more than 13,000 State Players of the Year and 270 National Players of the Year, including many of today's top professional athletes, such as Peyton Manning, Lisa Leslie, Candace Parker, Kerri Walsh, Derek Jeter, and Emmitt Smith.