Ellie White of Mother McAuley is the 2023-24 Gatorade Illinois Volleyball Player of the Year, Gatorade announced today. The award celebrates the nation’s top high school athletes for excellence on the court, in the classroom and in the community.
White, who was named the Michio Chicago VBA/Illprepvb.com 2023 Girls Volleyball Player of the Year in November, led the Mighty Macs to a 39-5 record and a second consecutive IHSA Class 4A championship this fall. She recorded 484 kills, including 18 kills in McAuley’s win over Benet Academy in finals.
A natural setter, White also compiled 313 digs, 95 blocks and 37 ace. She concluded her prep volleyball career with 1,923 kills and 1,016 digs.
A student ambassador at Mother McAuley, White is active in her school’s student government. She has volunteered locally as a youth mentor and volleyball coach, and she has donated her time as a peer tutor through the Mother McAuley National Honor Society.
“Ellie truly is a six-rotation outside hitter,” said St. Laurence head coach Ellen Yopchick. “She is a primary passer, go-to attacker, dynamic blocker and handles 50 percent of their serve receptions. Without Ellie, I am not sure they win the state championship.”
White has maintained a 3.79 GPA in the classroom. She has signed a National Letter of Intent to play volleyball on scholarship at the University of Michigan 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 leverages experts including coaches, scouts, media and others as sources to help evaluate and determine the state winners in each sport.
Two-time winner White joins recent Gatorade Illinois Volleyball Players of the Year Katie Hurta of Nazareth Academy (2021-22), Benet Academy’s Rachel Muisenga (2020-21) and Sterling’s Lexi Rodriguez (2019-20) among the state’s list of former award winners.
As part of Gatorade’s commitment to breaking down barriers in sport, every Player of the Year also receives a grant to donate to a social impact partner. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants have totaled more than $4.9 million across more than 1,600 organizations.
To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com.