Gulfport’s Kate Smith named 2020 Mississippi Player of the Year

Gulfport's Kate Smith named 2020 Mississippi Player of the Year

GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - The United Soccer Coaches Association love themselves some Kate Smith. The Gulfport junior striker was named the 2020 high school state player of the year after leading the girls soccer team to it’s first Class 6A championship since 2008 in February.

This is Smith’s fourth time being honored by the Association. Two weeks ago, Smith was selected as a member of the All-Southeast Region and All-State teams as well as garnering All-American honors - the only girl player from Mississippi to receive the recognition - just after her sophomore season.

In the 2019-20 season, Smith scored 27 goals, while assisting on 19 more, to help lead the Lady Admirals to an undefeated 21-0-4 record and the Class 6A championship, the program’s first since 2008.

“I was like oh my gosh, this is crazy because I didn’t even know and then Coach Pryor told me that he was Coach of the Year and I was like oh my gosh we’re like the dynamic duo,” Smith told WLOX.

“I’m so thankful for my team and my coaches because they’ve been like the most help through it all because they’ve always been so supportive. We didn’t even realize it until like playoffs like oh my gosh we haven’t lost yet. It was just crazy this year, but it was so much fun, I loved it.”

Smith tells WLOX that division one schools have started reaching out to her and has already received an offer from South Alabama. Unable to compete in travel ball over the summer because of the pandemic, Smith says she’s been doing a lot of shooting and running to prepare for next season.

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