Downey grad named Student Athlete of the Year

DOWNEY - Juan Avena, who graduated from Downey High School in June, has been named the 2011 State Farm Student Athlete of the Year, organizers announced this week.The award is presented annually by Major League Baseball's Urban Youth Academy to the student-athlete that has "demonstrated the highest academic and/or athletic achievement during the previous school year." Avena, 18, will be honored at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday, before the Dodgers host the Philadelphia Phillies. Avena will throw the ceremonial first pitch. A regular attendee of the Urban Youth Academy in Compton the last five years, Avena was selected for improving his high school GPA and "for his outstanding baseball playing ability while overcoming tremendous obstacles in his community," officials said in a press release. Avena will attend Central Arizona Junior College on a scholarship this fall.

********** Published: August 04, 2011 - Volume 10 - Issue 16