CLEVELAND — Malvin Gblah, a standout soccer player at Lakewood High School, was named the winner of the Male High School Athlete of the Year Award at the Greater Cleveland Sports Awards ceremony.

Gblah was presented with the honor at the 19th Greater Cleveland Sports Awards dinner at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel Grand Ballroom Wednesday night.

A soccer player for the Rangers, Gblah earned several honors over the 2018 season.

Gblah was a High School All-American, OSSCA (Ohio Scholastic Soccer Coaches Association) All-Ohio First Team, All-Greater Cleveland Player of the Year, All-Greater Cleveland First Team, All-Lake Erie Regional Team, All-Southwest Conference second team and the GCSSCA (Greater Cleveland Scholastic Soccer Coaches Association) All-Star First Team.

Gblah compiled one of the most prolific careers in Lakewood High School history, and he played in the fourth-most games (71), third-most goals (45) and the most assists (31). During the 2018 season, Gblah registered 18 assists, which is tied for the most in a single season.

Gblah is far more than a talented soccer player.

Born in a refugee camp in the Ivory Coast, Gblah and his family emigrated to the United States when he was a child to escape the violence gripping Liberia during a civil war.

Gblah won the Male High School Athlete of the Year Award over St. Ignatius lacrosse standout Michael Boehm and Mentor Cardinals standout defensive end Noah Potter. Boehm will continue his lacrosse career at the University of Michigan, while Potter has committed to The Ohio State University to play football for the Buckeyes.

The Male High School Athlete of the Year Award is presented to the athlete who best distinguishes the characteristics of athletic prowess and is in good academic standing at his respective school.