John Curtis star Cade Beloso named Gatorade state baseball player of the year

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Cade Beloso John Curtis
Cade Beloso is the first John Curtis player to be named Gatorade Louisiana baseball player of the year.

CHICAGO — In its 33rd year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, announced Tuesday that Cade Beloso of John Curtis Christian School is its 2017-18 Gatorade Louisiana Baseball Player of the Year. Beloso is the first Gatorade Louisiana Baseball Player of the Year to be chosen from John Curtis Christian.

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 Beloso as Louisiana’s best high school baseball player.  Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Baseball Player of the Year, Beloso joins an elite alumni association of past state award-winners in 12 sports, including Derek Jeter (1991-92, Kalamazoo High School, Mich.), Jon Lester (2001-02, Bellarmine Preparatory School, Wash.), David Price (2003-04, Blackman High School, Tenn.), Clayton Kershaw (2005-06, Highland Park High School, Texas), Rick Porcello (2006-2007, Seaton Hall Preparatory School, N.J.) and Kris Bryant (2009-10, Bonanza High School, Nev.).

The 6-foot, 225-pound senior first baseman led the Patriots (34-4) to their second consecutive Division I state championship. Beloso batted .489 batting (45-for-92), blasting 14 home runs to go with 38 RBI and a slugging percentage of 1.086. He also walked 23 times to compile an on-base percentage of .616, in addition to scoring 38 runs and striking out just seven times. A two-time District 9-5A Most Valuable Player, Beloso finished his high school career with 22 home runs.

A member of National Honor Society and a lead actor in the school’s recent production of “High School Musical II,” Beloso has donated his time as a member of the leadership team that helped pay the way for the Cary (N.C.) baseball team to play in the National High School Invitational. Beloso has also volunteered locally by reading to first graders and helping out at St. Francis Villa Assisted Living.

“Cade is a very good hitter for average, but his power is exceptional,” said Kirk Bullinger, head coach at Archbishop Shaw High. “If you made a mistake, he made you pay. When they need a spark, that’s what Cade does for them.”

Beloso has maintained a 3.84 GPA in the classroom. He has signed a national letter of intent to play baseball at LSU 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 work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.

Beloso joins recent Gatorade Louisiana Baseball Players of the Year Jacob Pearson (2016-17, West Monroe High School), Logan Savoy (2015-16, South Beauregard High School), Kale Breaux (2014-15, Sulphur High School), Chase Vallot (2013-14, St. Thomas More High School), Jared Poche (2012-13, Lutcher High School), Gavin Cecchini (2011-12 & 2010–11, Alfred M. Barbe High School), Bronson Gillam (2009-10, Evangel Christian Academy), Zach Von Rosenberg (2008-09, Zachary High School), Austin Nola (2007-08, Catholic High School), and Carmen Angelini (2006-07, Barbe High School) among the state’s list of former award winners.

As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Cade will be able to select a national or local youth sports organization to receive a grant as part of the Gatorade Play It Forward program. Every Gatorade Player of the Year state winner receives a $1,000 grant to donate and will have the opportunity to enter for an additional $10,000 spotlight grant by writing a brief essay explaining why their selected organization deserves additional support. 12 spotlight grants – one for each sport – will be announced throughout the year.

To keep up to date on the latest happenings, become a fan of Gatorade Player of the Year on Facebook and follow the conversation on Twitter #GatoradePOY. For more on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of past winners and the announcement of the Gatorade National Player of the Year, visit http://playeroftheyear.gatorade.com/.

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