Spartan Shoutout to freshman Jenna Sniffen who was named the 2020-2021 Gatorade State Softball Player of the Year. The honor makes it back to back years that a Lady Spartan has won the award (Liliana Thomas '21).
In its 36th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, Gatorade today announced Jenna Sniffen of Maryknoll School as its 2020-21 Gatorade Hawaii Softball Player of the Year. Sniffen is the third Gatorade Hawaii Softball Player of the Year to be chosen from Maryknoll 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 field, distinguishes Sniffen as Hawaii’s best high school softball player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year award to be announced in June, Sniffen joins an elite alumni association of state award-winners in 12 sports, including Cat Osterman (2000-01, Cy Spring High School, Texas), Kelsey Stewart (2009-10, Arkansas City High School, Kan.), Carley Hoover (2012-13, D.W. Daniel High School, S.C.), Jenna Lilley (2012-13, Hoover High School, Ohio), Morgan Zerkle (2012-13, Cabell Midland High School, W. Va.), and Rachel Garcia (2014-15, Highland High School, Calif.).
The 5-foot-4 freshman third baseman led the Spartans to a 10-2 record and the Interscholastic League of Honolulu championship this past season. Sniffen posted a .596 batting average with 13 home runs, 40 runs batted in, 29 runs scored and a 1.948 OPS. A 2021 First Team All-ILH selection, she hit safely in all 12 games she played, produced 10 multi-hit games and did not strike out all season.
Sniffen has volunteered locally in association with her church and as a youth baseball coach. “Jenna Sniffen’s overall strength and swing speed is one of a kind,” said Maryknoll School head coach John Uekawa. “Her work ethic, determination and never-say-die attitude makes her a born leader.” Sniffen has maintained a 3.24 GPA in the classroom. She will begin her sophomore 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 Player of the Year Selection Committee, which works with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
Sniffen joins recent Gatorade Hawaii Softball Players of the Year Liliana Thomas (2019-20, Maryknoll School), Aleia Agbayani (2018-19, Iolani School), Mari Foster (2017-18, Roosevelt High School), and Jocelyn Alo (2016-17, Campbell High School), among the state’s list of former award winners.
Through Gatorade’s cause marketing platform “Play it Forward,” Sniffen has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant to a local or national youth sports organization of their choosing. Sniffen is also eligible to submit a 30-second video explaining why the organization they chose is deserving of one of twelve $10,000 spotlight grants, which will be announced throughout the year. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants have totaled more than $2.7 million across 1,117 organizations.
Since the program’s inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming coaches, business owners and educators.
To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com, on Facebook at facebook.com/GatoradePOY or follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/Gatorade.View Coverage:
- Maryknoll freshman Jenna Sniffen named Gatorade Hawai’i Softball Player of the Year
KHON, Friday 7/2/21