Rabun County junior long distance runner Guy Gober has had quite the career. Rather than plateau, however, he has continued to improve each year. For him, the 2018 track and field season proved to be the pinnacle of his career to date, wining a pair of Class 2A State Championships. For that, Gober has earned the 2018 BLITZ Track & Field Athlete of the Year award.
A region champion in the fall in cross country, he was no doubt dissatisfied with a fifth-place finish at the state meet in November 2017. Perhaps that fueled his drive for the two state titles, another region title in the 1600 and a third place finish in the 3200.
That’s not all…Gober was a pivotal piece of the Wildcat 4×400 relay team, which finished as region runner-up before besting their time by 30 seconds at the state meet, coming in fifth. Gober’s 4:31 in the 1600 at state set a new personal best for him as well.
Our panel of 18 voters, made up of media reporters/broadcasters, former BLITZ players, former coaches and a couple of fans, submitted their Heisman-style ballots for the four finalists for the award:
HISTORY OF TRACK & FIELD ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
Gober becomes the second Rabun athlete to win the award (Charlie Woerner, 2014). Interestingly enough, though, Gober is the first distance runner to take Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year in the nine-year history. He is the first junior to win since Lumpkin sprinter Austin Pierce in 2015.
2018 – Guy Gober – Rabun Co JR Distance
2017 – Zatrick Pearce – Tallulah Falls SR Sprint/Jump
2016 – Jay Acker – Commerce SR Vault/Throw
2015 – Austin Pierce – Lumpkin JR Sprint
2014 – Charlie Woerner – Rabun SO Throw/Hurdles
2013 – DiKerrio Ramsey – Commerce SR Jump
2012 – Jocquise Lloyd – Hayesville SR Jump/Sprint
2011 – Taylor Guthrie – Lumpkin SR Jump
2010 – Andrew Seay – Habersham Central SR Throw
LOOKING AHEAD – THE NEXT FAVORITE(S)
Gober could be the first to ever repeat this award, as it’s never been done. Only two other lower-classmen have won the award prior to this year, and neither was able to repeat the following year. Of the four finalists this year, three will be back in 2019, including Gober and Greyson Burke (Commerce) who are both rising seniors. Banks’ Jackson Ramey will be a junior next year. Of course, it could anyone else next year to come in and win the award, but these three have the inside track (pun intended).