High School Sports

Colony’s David Elliott named Alaska’s Gatorade Player of the Year for boys soccer

After helping lead the Colony High boys soccer team to its first Division I Alaska state championship in nearly half a decade, senior forward David Elliott became just the second player in program history to be named Alaska’s Gatorade Player of the Year last week.

“It feels like all the work has been worth it,” he said. “I kind of got that feeling winning the state championship but it’s a good cherry on top.”

Some notable recipients of the award from its previous 37 years include first overall selection in the 2022 MLS SuperDraft Ben Bender of Charlotte FC, 2016 first overall MLS SuperDraftpick Jack Harrison who currently plays for the EFL Championship club Leeds United, and Jacob Shaffelburg of the MLS club Nashville SC.

Over the course of his stellar final prep season, Elliott led the state with a career-high 21 goals, added 12 assists, and earned both Railbelt Conference Player of the Year and All-State honors. He was instrumental in the Knights’ thrilling double overtime state title victory over defending champion South Anchorage by scoring the first goal of the game in the first extra period.

[South girls and Colony boys prevail in overtime to claim Division I state soccer championships]

“For that goal, I definitely didn’t want to mess it up so I had to make sure I really put it in the net,” said Elliott whose momentum carried him and the ball into the back of the net in the state title tilt.

The award not only recognizes a student-athlete for on-field performance, it also takes into account outstanding academic achievement and extraordinary character exemplified on and off the field.


Elliott maintained a 3.29 GPA while taking advanced placement courses in calculus and physics.

Elliott volunteered locally shoveling snow for elderly neighbors as well as providing rides to school for classmates during a bus driver strike. He also spent time volunteering for an annual charity drive for Children’s Miracle Network and helped organize and run an event that has raised $20,000 for children’s hospitals.

“I helped my father with his stream-a-thon that raised over $20,000 for a charity,” he said. “I was behind the scenes helping him come up with ideas.”

The only other Colony player to win the award was midfielder Noah Krozel in the 2017-2018 season.

Opposing coaches were well aware of the dangerous offensive threat Elliott presented every time he stepped on the pitch and respected his humility and blue-collar approach to the game.

“David is tenacious — he just has an extra gear and drive,” Service High head coach Dan Rufner said in a statement. “He is naturally incredibly fast, but it’s more his mindset to always go 110 percent (that stands out). He’s got a very competitive, winner’s attitude. I like that he goes hard, (plays the body) hard, plays hard, but is never arrogant and will be the first to check on an opponent he plows over.”

He hit the gym a lot more often in the offseason leading up to his senior year and was a part of the Colony boys state championship winning cross country and track and field teams as well.

“I was hoping that cross country would ready me for soccer,” said, Elliott who also briefly considered playing running back for the Knights’ eventual state championship-winning football team.

He has verbally committed to attend and play soccer at Tacoma Community College in Washington and was persuaded to join the Titans because of two key factors.

“It’s a college I’m familiar with since my sisters went through it and it was one of the few that had a computer engineering degree because that’s what I want to pursue,” Elliott said.

Josh Reed

Josh Reed is a sports reporter for the Anchorage Daily News. He's a graduate of West High School and the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.