Kaukauna's Karly Meredith warms up prior to the Ghosts' quarterfinal game in the WIAA Division 1 state softball tournament. Dan Plutchak/Kaukauna Community News photo

KAUKAUNA — Kaukauna High School junior Karly Meredith has been named the state’s top softball player for the second year in a row.

In its 39th year of honoring the nation’s most elite high school athletes, Gatorade made the announcement Friday ahead of the Ghosts’ semifinal game at the WIAA state softball tournament in Madison.

Meredith, currently the three-time Fox Valley Association Player of the Year, is the fourth Gatorade Wisconsin Softball Player of the Year to be chosen from Kaukauna High School.

The award, which celebrates the nation’s top high school athletes for excellence on the field, in the classroom and in the community, distinguishes Meredith as Wisconsin’s best high school softball player.

At the time of the announcement, the 5-foot-7 junior right-handed pitcher had led the Galloping Ghosts to a 31-0 record this season and the Division 1 state tournament semifinals.

Meredith compiled a 18-0 record and a 0.46 ERA in 90.1 innings through 30 games, striking out 160 batters.

The state’s returning Gatorade Player of the Year and the anchor of a program that had won 107 straight games entering the postseason round of eight, she reached the quarterfinals with a .592 batting average along with five home runs and 41 RBI, fanning just three times in 49 at bats. In the process, she recorded a .643 on-base percentage and an OPS of 1.957.

Meredith has volunteered locally in association with Holy Cross Church and has been a member of the CYO basketball program for three years.

She has also donated her time as a youth softball coach and instructor.

“Karly Meredith is not only the best pitcher we faced in 2024, she’s probably the best high school pitcher I’ve seen in 20 years of coaching,” said Chad Mix, head coach at Kimberly High School. “Her velocity and movement is next-level.”

“She’s very tough to score on. Karly maintains top-level confidence, demeanor and mindset on the mound, which translates to her teammates. They know they only need a run or two to win when she’s pitching. Not only can Karly pitch, she’s also one of Kaukauna’s best hitters. She’s a threat every time she steps to the plate,” he said.

Meredith has maintained a 3.92 GPA in the classroom. She has verbally committed to play softball on scholarship at the University of Virginia in the fall of 2025.

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 Meredith joins recent Gatorade Wisconsin Softball Players of the Year Paytn Monticelli (2021-22 & 2020-21, Cedarburg High School) and Maddie Gardner (2019-20, Sun Prairie High School), 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, the Gatorade Player of the Year program has provided more than $4.9 million in grants to winners across more than 1,900 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 or follow us on social media on Facebook at
facebook.com/GatoradePOY, Instagram at instagram.com/Gatorade and X(Twitter) at x.com/Gatorade.