North Harford High’s Kevin Mooney has been named the 2012 Gatorade Maryland Baseball Player of the Year.

The award recognizes outstanding athletic excellence as well as high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field.  Mooney is now a finalist for the Gatorade National Baseball Player of the Year award.

The 6-foot-1, 195-pound senior righthander helped lead the Hawks to the Class 3A state championship game and the No. 2 ranking in the final VSN metro Top 20. He posted a 9-1 record with a 0.30 ERA and 114 strikeouts in 64 innings, and batted .361 with 30 RBI.

“Kevin Mooney is the best pitcher in the state of Maryland, no question about it,” said Bernie Walters, director of baseball operations at the University of Maryland, who won 10 state titles during a legendary career at Arundel High. “He can throw with command. He’s also an outstanding student with a solid family life.”

Mooney will be the latest area product to stay home and play for the Terps next season.

Mooney joins recent Gatorade Maryland Baseball Players of the Year selections Austin Neary (2010-11; Archbishop Spalding), Travis Clark (2009-10, Hammond), Jack Carey (2008-09; St. Paul’s School), Kevin Brady (2007-08; Gaithersburg), and Joseph Yermal (2006-07; McDonogh School), among the state’s list of former award winners.

Neary is a freshman at Western Carolina, Clark is a redshirt freshman at the University of South Carolina-Aiken, and Carey is a redshirt sophomore at Wake Forest University. Yermal is a redshirt senior pitcher for the University of North Carolina-Charlotte.