Ryan Heider and Richard Davis
Polk County state tennis champion Ryan Heider, left, with head coach Richard Davis

A handful of Polk County athletes have been selected as finalists for the 2020 WNC Sports Awards.

The WNC Sports Awards program annually honors the top high school athletes in the area. The Mountain Amateur Athletic Club sponsors the awards and typically recognizes the finalists and announces award winners during a banquet at Grove Park Inn.

Due to the global coronavirus pandemic, no banquet will be held this year. But MAAC decided to go ahead and select the finalists, with plans to announce award winners later this month and recognize them at the 2021 banquet. All finalists will receive a gold medal.

Polk County athletes chosen as finalists include:

Mills Manufacturing Division II Female Team in an Olympic Sport: Polk County’s 4×400-meter relay team of Izzy Jackson, Mariah Overholt, Olivia Overholt and Marissa Twitty, which won the 2019 1A state title.

White & Williams Division II Male Athlete in an Olympic Sport: Polk County’s Ryan Heider, the 2019 state 1A tennis champion, and Jake Justice, the 2019 1A outdoor state champion in the pole vault.

Young Transportation Division II Male Athlete of the Year: Ryan Heider

Area athletic directors nominated athletes for the awards, which included the 2019 spring season, the 2019 fall season and the 2019-2020 winter season.

A full list of award finalists can be viewed at