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Kahuku’s Villa adds Gatorade honor

Kahuku guard Jessiya Villa kept the ball away from Mount Vernon (N.Y.) center Gregory Calixte at the ‘Iolani Prep Classic. Photo by Jamm Aquino / Star-Advertiser.

Kahuku senior guard Jessiya Villa, who was named the Honolulu Star-Advertiser player of the year just over a week ago, was selected as the Gatorade Hawaii boys basketball player of the year on Monday.

Villa averaged 17.1 points, 6.2 assists, 4.8 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game in leading Kahuku to its first-ever state title in boys basketball.

As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Jessiya 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, according to the press release. 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.

Recent Gatorade Hawaii boys basketball winners include Hugh Hogland (‘Iolani), Kupa’a Harrison (Kalaheo), Ikaika Phillip (‘Iolani), Josh Ko (Kalaheo), DeForest Buckner (Punahou) and Micah Christenson (Kamehameha).

Villa is the second Kahuku player to win the Gatorade honor, joining Junior Ale in 2006.


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