In its 28th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with USA TODAY High School Sports, announced Joey Czellecz of Kelly Walsh High School as its Gatorade Wyoming Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the track, distinguishes Czellecz as Wyoming’s best high school boys track & field athlete.

Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year award to be announced in June, Czellecz joins an elite alumni association of state award-winners in 12 sports, including Ryan Hall (1999-01, Big Bear HS, Calif.), Meb Keflezighi (1993-94, San Diego HS, Calif.), Derek Jeter (1991-92, Kalamazoo HS, Mich.), Candace Parker (2001-02, Naperville Central HS, Ill.), Mark Sanchez (2004-05, Mission Viejo HS, Calif.) and Lolo Jones (1997-98, Roosevelt HS, Ia.).

The 5-foot-11 junior hurdler/sprinter won two individual state championships this spring and led the Trojans to a second-place finish at the Class 4A state meet.

Czellecz won the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 14.85 seconds and the 300-meter hurdles in 38.94.

A 2013 First Team All-State selection, he also won the 300-hurdles in 38.85 and ran the opening leg for the 4x400-meter relay quartet that broke the tape in 3:23.13 at the Class 4A West Regionals.

Czellecz has maintained a 3.24 GPA in the classroom. A devoted member of his parish community, he participated as part of multiple service-mission trips in association with his church and has donated his time locally as a vacation bible school counselor and a youth track and field coach.

“Joey Czellecz is a fierce competitor and a true leader for our school,” said Kelly Walsh High head coach Mark Hileman. “He is a wonderful representative for the sport of track and field in our state.

Czellecz will begin his senior year of high school 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 the Gatorade high school sports leadership team in partnership with USA TODAY High School Sports 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.

Czellecz joins recent Gatorade Wyoming Boys Track & Field Athletes of the Year Kevin Allen (2011-12, Upton High School), Justin Melton (2010–11, Douglas High School), Caleb Her Many Horses (2009-10, Wyoming Indian), Dominick Robinson (2008–09, Campbell County), Stephen Michel (2007-08, Laramie), and Brendan Ames (2006-2007, Cheyenne Central) among the state’s list of former award winners.