CHICAGO (Gatorade Player of Year) — In its 33rd year of honoring the nation's best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, today announced Leanna Johnson of Brantley High School as its 2017-18 Gatorade Alabama Softball Player of the Year. Johnson is the first Gatorade Alabama Softball Player of the Year to be chosen from Brantley High 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 Johnson as Alabama's best high school softball player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year, Johnson joins an elite alumni association of past state softball award-winners, including Catherine 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-7 senior right-handed pitcher led the Bulldogs (53-4) to the Class 1A state championship this past season. Johnson compiled a 48-4 record with a 0.45 ERA in the circle, along with a .374 batting average, seven home runs and 43 RBI. She struck out 536 batters in 265.2 innings pitched. The Most Outstanding Player at the state tournament, Johnson has been named Class 1A Pitcher of the Year three times.
A devoted member of her church youth group, Johnson has volunteered locally on behalf of the Brantley Parks and Recreation Department and youth softball camps.
Johnson has maintained an A average in the classroom. She has signed a National Letter of Intent to play softball on scholarship at Troy University this fall.