Clare Shea of Northern Highlands was named the Gatorade New Jersey Girls Soccer Player of the Year on Thursday morning.
Shea, a junior midfielder, was an instrumental figure in helping the Highlanders to their second straight 24-0 campaign, collecting 34 goals and nine assists for the two-time NJSIAA Group 3 state champion. The Highlanders will begin the 2013 season in September riding a 48-game winning streak.
Shea, who is the first athlete from Northern Highlands to receive the honor, was particularly crisp in the air, depositing a number of her goals off headers set up by the long throw-ins of senior defender Jackie Reyneke. She scored at least once in all but three matches this past fall and recorded 10 multiple-goal performances.
Shea has verbally committed to the United States Military Academy.
Gregg Lerner covers girls soccer for MSG Varsity. Follow him on Twitter: @gregglerner