In a room full of star athletes, Johnathan Gray (football) and Breanna Stewart (basketball) shined the brightest, becoming the latest players to receive the honor of Gatorade Athlete of The Year. Now in its tenth season, the prestigious award ceremony was held at the Loews Hollywood Hotel in Los Angeles last week, and STACK was on hand to share the moment.
"Winning Player of the Year is a dream come true," said Gray. "Not too many kids get to come to Hollywood and attend a ceremony like this, be surrounded by top athletes and be in the position that I am. So I'm gonna turn it into motivation and take it to college with me."
This was not Gray's first big-time honor. Now entering his senior season, the two-time Gatorade Football Player of the Year has already set a national record for career touchdowns. He also holds all-time scoring and rushing honors in the State of Texas.
Stewart finished her high school career with 2,367 points and a double-double in 85 percent of her games. A 2012 McDonald's All-American and Miss New York Basketball, she was the 2010-2011 Gatorade New York Girls Basketball Player of the Year. Stewart has signed a letter of intent to play for the University of Connecticut.
"This [award] just shows how much hard work pays off and drives you to continue having success," Stewart said, " [Athlete of The Year] shows that so far you are doing well, but there is obviously always room to improve, which comes from treating your body right through hydrating, eating healthy and making smart decisions."
Hydration and healthy eating were key focuses of this year's ceremony, as Gatorade showcased its new nutrition series, Sports G. Throughout the week, the high school athletes in attendance were led through a series of workouts and nutrition coaching sessions centered around using the G Series: Prime, Perform and Recover.
As a bonus for the young athletes, Gatorade superstar-endorsers Robert Griffin III, Lisa Leslie, Landon Donovan and Alonzo Mourning offered their own advice on proper fueling.
Griffin said, "It's always good to see the young, new talent coming out—from how hard working and determined they are to just the brightness of the future of all sports in general."
For more fueling and performance tips and tricks from Gray, Stewart and Gatorade athletes, check back on STACK.com later this week.