Thorington recognized as Milward Simpson finalist

Posted 6/20/24

Top multi-sport athletes from around Wyoming flocked to Cody on Saturday, as Powell’s Addy Thorington was recognized as one of the top five female senior athletes in the state regardless of …

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Thorington recognized as Milward Simpson finalist


Top multi-sport athletes from around Wyoming flocked to Cody on Saturday, as Powell’s Addy Thorington was recognized as one of the top five female senior athletes in the state regardless of classification at the Milward Simpson Award luncheon.

Thorington was named a finalist alongside athletes from 3A and 4A, as Wheatland’s Lily Nichols, Cheyenne East’s Bradie Schlabs, Sheridan’s Addie Pendergast and Cody’s Molly Hays were also named finalists. Hays won the award, the second in a row for Cody and second overall for the Fillies.

Thorington was the only athlete from the 3A Northwest recognized at the ceremony for girls, but competed consistently in volleyball, basketball and track with two of the others, Hays and Pendergast. She said that level of competition shows that Wyoming, and the northwest portion in particular, produces some strong talent despite its size.

“Coming from little Wyoming we produce great athletes, all these people are going to outstanding colleges to participate in the sport they love which is awesome,” she said.

Throughout the ceremony, athletes were recognized for their accomplishments, while also being given the history of past winners and of the award itself from the sons of the late Wyoming Gov. Milward Simpson, including former U.S. Sen. Al Simpson and former Wyoming legislator and longtime University of Wyoming professor Pete Simpson.

“It was super cool, they were awesome and super funny, nice guys,” Thorington said. 

Being named as a finalist alongside some of her competition came as an honor to Thorington, as she feels it is tougher to be recognized as a top multi-sport athlete at smaller schools.

“It’s such an honor honestly coming from such a small town,” Thorington said. “I feel like 3A never gets recognized for this type of award and it’s such an honor and really cool. I haven’t seen a lot of these people because they are 4A, and it’s just so cool being recognized (alongside them).”

During the ceremony, Thorington received her plaque from fellow Powell alumni Dale Ann Meeker, who serves as a committee member for the Milward Simpson Award.

“It was pretty cool considering she was from Powell. She was an amazing athlete and it was such an honor,” Thorington said.

She’s now part of an exclusive list just being named as a finalist for the award, as nine Powell athletes have been finalists and two have won.

Those prior finalists include Emma Karhu in 2021, Anissa Warner in 2016, Hannah Pollart in 2010, Jaci Heny in 2002, Kristy Johnson in 1996, Jesseca Cross in 1993, Abby Sewchok in 1988 and Kelly Heny in 1986 with Cross and Johnson being the two female winners from Powell.

Thorington hopes that being named a finalist for the award will help inspire the next generation of up-and-coming Panthers to participate in several sports, while continuing to improve their skills and keep showing how strong Powell is despite its size.

“I know it’s going to sound kind of cliche, but anything is possible. Just because you come from a small town or you don’t win any championships — the only ones we won were track and that’s very broad I feel like, it’s obviously still amazing to win, but we never won any basketball or volleyball championships — You can still be a great athlete without having amazing outcomes,” Thorington said.

The boys’ finalists included Drew Jackson of Cheyenne East, Reed McFadden of Lander, Parker Paxton of Riverton, Gavin Stafford of Big Horn and the winner being Sheridan’s Dane Steel.



Apart from the Milward Simpson Award, Thorington had a busy weekend, competing in Gillette and Billings on Friday and Saturday in the Wyoming-Montana All-Star basketball games.

“It’s been so fun, all the girls were super amazing, they’re all 4A and there’s only two 3A people,” Thorington said. “I feel like we came together as a team very well. We all laugh with each other and communicate very well. It’s been such an experience because I’ve never played with these people or seen them play before so it’s been really fun.”

Wyoming fell in both contests 90-68 in Gillette and 76-35 in Billings.