Vote Now: Royal Oak Athlete of the Spring Season
Choose from a list of deserving candidates for Patch Athlete of the Season for Royal Oak.
Royal Oak High School had plenty of great athleteic performances this season. Now we want to hear from our readers which one they thought was the best.
Be sure to vote by 9 p.m. Wednesday, June 27. Final results will be posted on June 29.
Here are the candidates:
Ben Hill – Freshman, Royal Oak High School, Track and Field: Ben Hill is proving to be one of the top young distance runners in the state. He finished 3,200 meter run in the Division 1 state finals and finished third place with a 9:20.38 to earn All-State status. Hill won an individual title in the race at regionals. He beat out teammate Max Benoit with a time of 9:44.61. He won the 3200 meters race at a variety of events throughout the year, including the Royal Oak Relays and the Oakland Activities Association Blue Championship meet.
Catherine Gray – Junior, Royal Oak High School, Tennis: Catherine Gray helped the Royal Oak varsity tennis team capture its first division title since 2006 with an incredibly strong year. At the Oakland Activities Association Blue division tournament, she was the only Raven to win her flight. She beat Ferndale’s Lekha Mutyala 7-5, 6-0 in No. 2 singles. Earlier in season, she earned a Patch Athlete of the Week nomination for winning the No. 2 flight at the Daily Tribune Invitational against very tough competition and winning two other division matches.
Julia Liggett – Freshman, Shrine Catholic High School, Track and Field: Freshman Julia Liggett proved race after race she could hang with veteran runners. She competed at the Division 4 state finals in the 100-meters and was one spot away from earning All-State status. She finished in ninth place with a 13.47. As part of Shrine’s 4x100 relay team she did bring home a medal. Liggett, along with Qianna Parham, Taylor Kilgore and Tori Allen, finished in sixth place. Liggett also had a strong showing at the Catholic League C-D Championship where she finished first in the 100-meter, 10th in the 200-meter and first in the 4x100 relay.
Dominic Valente – Senior, Royal Oak High School, Baseball: Dominic Valente was a real standout for the Royal Oak varsity baseball. The senior was the Ravens' ace and one of their top hitters all season long. In April, Valente was nominated for Athlete of the Week for a gem of a pitching performance in a 2-0 win over Troy. The senior only allowed three hits over seven shutout innings and finished the game with 10 strikeouts. At the plate, he reached base twice and scored both of the Ravens' runs.