About this series
Coming up with a short list and then ranking the 10 greatest athletes in the history of each YAIAA high school was a daunting task. For sure, there is no scientific approach. But after two years of interviews, research and roundtable discussions, we are presenting as fair an attempt as possible to create an objective list on a decidedly subjective topic.
OUR CRITERIA: 1. The only accomplishments considered were those achieved while competing in high school varsity athletics. If an athlete earned a college scholarship, that was also factored in. 2. Accomplishments outside the setting of high school varsity sports and accomplishments after high school were not taken into account. 3. Athletes who attended more than one local high school were only evaluated at the school where they had the most varsity success. 4. Female athletes were rated by how they dominated their own sports not how they would fare going head-to-head against male athletes.

Your turn
If you d like to comment or offer a differing opinion on this list, we d love to hear from you. Each Sunday, we ll present your feedback on opinions on page 2 of the York Sunday News sports section - The Rundown. E-mail your thoughts to Sports Editor Chris Otto at cotto@ydr.com or mail them to: Greatest Athletes, c/o Chris Otto, 1891 Loucks Road, York 17408.

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1. Scott Fitzkee, 1975

He was arguably the most talented three-sport athlete ever to come out of York and Adams counties. In football, he was a star running back who held state records for average yards per carry in a season (11.6) and average yards per carry in a career (10.87). He left Red Lion with a league-record 2,805 rushing yards. He earned second-team all-state honors as a senior and started on the Big 33 team. He earned a full scholarship to play wide receiver at Penn State, choosing over offers from Texas, Ohio State and Notre Dame. In track and field, he was undefeated in high school in the 100- and 200-yard dashes and in the long jump during league and District 3 championship meets. He won a state gold medal and tied a state record in the 100 dash (9.6), which converts to a 10.5 100 meters. He finished second in states in the 200. He even was a 1,000-point scorer in basketball (1,040), earning all-county honors as a junior and senior.

2. Danny Smith, 1966

A two-sport phenom, whose 50 career touchdowns stood as a YAIAA record for 32 years. He ran for a then-league record 2,688 career yards and led the Lions on a 37-game winning streak. Penn State and West Virginia were two of the powers recruiting him as a running back until he decided to pursue professional baseball. The Boston Red Sox drafted the shortstop in the seventh round.

3. Sam Neff, 1967

A three-sport star who earned a football scholarship to the University of Maryland, choosing over offers from Minnesota, Clemson, Navy, Delaware and others. He was a three-year starter in football, basketball and baseball and also helped lead the Lions on that 37-game winning streak as a quarterback and defensive back. He never lost a varsity game and was an all-county performer as a senior. In basketball, he was the school's first 1,000-point scorer and earned all-county honors as a junior and senior, setting school records for points in a game as a junior (37) and senior (38). In baseball, he drove in the winning run in the county championship game as a sophomore and started at first base for three years.

4. Ron 'Abe' Fitzkee Sr., 1947

The four-sport star earned a college scholarship in football, was scouted by pro baseball teams and set school records in track and field. In football, the halfback and place kicker led the league in scoring as a junior and senior and earned a scholarship to Gettysburg College. In baseball, the pitcher and infielder led his team in hitting three-straight years and was scouted by the Boston Red Sox. He also set school records in the 440-yard run (50.0) and the long jump (20-10) - the jump record standing for nearly 30 years until his son, Scott, broke it.

5. Butch Wynegar, 1974

One of the best baseball players ever from York and Adams counties also was a standout lineman on the football team. He was a four-year varsity starter in baseball, playing third base as a freshman and sophomore before moving to catcher. He was a switch-hitting, line-drive hitter who was selected in the second round of the Major League Baseball draft (38th overall) by the Minnesota Twins.

6. Simmie Strausbaugh, 1994

He is the school's all-time leading rusher and its best hurdler - earning YAIAA player of the year honors in football and track and field. As a senior, he rushed for a school record 1,465 yards and scored 21 touchdowns to lead the Lions to a share of the Division I title. He finished with 3,191 career rushing yards, even though he was never more than 5-foot-8 and 140 pounds. He also still holds the school record for rushing yards in a game (237). In track and field, he was a standout in the 200 meters but won a state gold medal in the Class AAA 300 hurdles and finished second in the 110 hurdlers. His 14.20 time in the 110 hurdles is still tied with Ian Campbell of Central (1995) for the best in YAIAA Championships history.

7. Ruth Loyer, 2001

The basketball and running star was a three-time track and field athlete of the year in the YAIAA. As a senior, she won league titles in the 800, 1600 and 3200 and district titles in the 800 and 1600. She finished second at states in the 1600, just missing a gold at the finish line, and still holds the YAIAA Championships record in the 800 (2:16.40). In basketball, she earned YAIAA player of the year honors, scoring 16.8 points per game as a senior. She led her team in scoring, assists, steals and rebounding - as a point guard. She is the school's No. 5 female career scorer with 1,339 points. She earned a cross country and track scholarship to William and Mary College.

8. Steve Johnson, 1979

The 6-foot-4 scoring machine on the basketball court also was a pretty good football player. Even without a 3-point line, the long-range shooter is still the school's all-time male basketball scorer with 1,646 career points. He was recruited by Princeton and Villanova but played Division I basketball for Navy. In football, he was a standout tight end and safety and still holds the school record for career interceptions (13). He received football recruiting interest from the University of Delaware, Harvard and others. He also was a pitcher, first baseman and outfielder on the baseball team.

9. Nan Strawbridge, 1990

She may have been the most dominating female track and field thrower in league history. She won the YAIAA Championships as a senior in the shot put, discus and javelin - and still holds league records in the discus (137-8) and the shot (41-1½). She won district gold in the shot and discus as a junior and senior and won state gold in the shot as a junior. She never lost a dual meet in either event her last two years. In volleyball, she was a four-year varsity starter, earning all-county honors as a senior. She was recruited for track and field by Penn State, Pitt and others but did not attend college.

10. Jen Thompson, 1997

She won state gold medals in the long jump and triple jump as a sophomore but suffered a severe torn muscle in her upper thigh during her junior year. Still, she helped the Lions' Class AAA 1,600 relay team take second place in districts. As a senior, she won YAIAA and District 3 gold medals in both jumping events and earned fourth- and fifth-place finishes at the PIAA meet. She still holds the YAIAA championships long jump record of 17-11½. She participated in two USA junior elite track and field training camps in San Diego and at the National Scholastic Track and Field Championships in Boston. She turned down prestigious college track and field scholarship offers to attend the University of Pennsylvania.