Albemarle senior runner Ryan Thomas has raced past the competition during his four years on the Patriots' cross-country and track and field teams.
Thursday he outpaced the competition for the Charlottesville Newsplex Male Student-Athlete of the Year Award.
Thomas edged out Charlottesville's Malloy Owen and Nelson County's Alec Shifflett for the award, part of the weekly Student-Athlete honor sponsored by Mountain Valley Burger King.
To be eligible, student-athletes must excel not just on the field, but also carry a good grade-point-average in the classroom and be involved in their local community.
Thomas is a state champion on the track and his talents will take him to the Ivy League and Columbia this fall, where he plans to study either law or politics.
"I feel honored to be chosen out of these wonderful people. Everyone was well-qualified," Thomas said upon receiving the award. "I take myself very seriously in the classroom and my academics are very important to me as my parents have imparted to me throughout my life. It means a lot to be recognized for both athletics and academics."