For the first time, Riverton High School has a Gatorade Wyoming Boys Basketball Player of the Year. Junior Parker Paxton was selected for the 2022-23 award on Wednesday.

In its 38th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company announced Paxton as the winner via a release to the media.

The 5-8 guard helped Riverton to a 21-6 overall record and the consolation trophy at the Class 4A state basketball tournament. Paxton averaged 18.5 points per game to lead Class 4A in the 2022-23 season. He shot 42 percent from the field, 40 percent beyond the arc, and 85 percent at the free-throw line. Paxton added 3.6 rebounds and 1.1 assists per game. His efforts included a 30-point performance against Star Valley in the consolation final at the 4A state tournament.

Paxton was chosen all-state in 2023 and is a two-time all-conference pick. He is also a three-time individual state champion golfer in Wyoming.

An active member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Paxton has volunteered locally on behalf of Cornerstone Church. He’s also a National Honor Society inductee. Paxton maintains a 3.77 GPA in the classroom. He will begin his senior year of high school this fall. Paxton has made a verbal commitment to play golf on scholarship at the University of Colorado starting in the fall of 2024.

Campbell County head coach Bubba Hladky spoke highly of Paxton’s ability.

“Parker has displayed excellence on the court. He can score well and gets his teammates involved. Every time I’ve seen him play, he demonstrates a competitive spirit and great sportsmanship. If I had to pick a player to start my team from anybody in Wyoming, I would pick Parker.”

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The award recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. It distinguishes Paxton as Wyoming’s best high school boys’ basketball player. He is a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year award to be announced later this month.

Paxton joins recent Gatorade Wyoming Boys Basketball Players of the Year Deegan Williams of Thunder Basin High School (2021-22), Sam Lecholat from Sheridan High School (2020-21 & 2019-20), and Erik Oliver of Cheyenne East High School (2018-19), among the state’s list of former award winners.

Being a Gatorade Player of the Year means paying it forward for the next generation. Through Gatorade’s ‘Play it Forward’ initiative, every Player of the Year receives a grant to give to one of Gatorade’s social impact partners, supporting Gatorade’s ambition to fuel the future of sport. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants has totaled more than $3.5 million across more than 1,300 organizations.

Information from a press release from The Gatorade Company was used in this story.

4A State Basketball Tournament: Day 2

4A State Basketball Tournament: Day 2

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