In its 30th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with USA TODAY High School Sports, today announced Jenna Bike of St. Joseph High School as its 2014-15 Gatorade Connecticut Girls Soccer Player of the Year.
Bike is the third Gatorade Connecticut Girls Soccer Player of the Year to be chosen from St. Joseph High School.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Bike as Connecticut’s best high school girls soccer player.
Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Girls Soccer Player of the Year award to be announced in May, Bike joins an elite alumni association of past state award-winners in 12 sports, including Abby Wambach (1997-98, Our Lady of Mercy, N.Y.), Derek Jeter (1991-92, Kalamazoo HS, Mich.), Candace Parker (2001-02, Naperville Central HS, Ill.), Alexi Lalas (1987-88, Cranbrook HS, Mich.), Heather O’Reilly (2001-02, East Brunswick HS, N.J.) and Mark Sanchez (2004-05, Mission Viejo HS, Calif.).
The 5-foot-6 junior forward scored 19 goals and passed for 15 assists this past season, leading the Cadets (13-3-3) to the Class LL state quarterfinals. A 2014 All-American selection by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, Bike missed the final three games of the regular season while attending a training camp with the U.S. Soccer Under-18 Women’s National Team.
Ranked as the No. 14 recruit in the Class of 2016 by TopDrawerSoccer.com, she concluded her junior year with 54 goals and 31 assists in her prep soccer career.
Bike has maintained a B average in the classroom. She has volunteered locally with a fundraising campaign to benefit the Special Olympics and has also donated her time to Habitat for Humanity in addition to serving as a youth soccer coach.
“Jenna Bike is remarkably fast with or without the ball,” said Dan Uhrlass, head coach of Trumbull High. “She is dangerous because she can go by defenders with ease. She is also very good at drawing fouls. They beat us 1-0 because Jenna drew a penalty from a late tackle. Other players simply are not used to how quick she is on the ball. She is clearly the difference-maker for St. Joseph’s.”
Bike has made a verbal commitment to play soccer on an athletic scholarship at Boston College beginning in the fall of 2016.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.
The selection process is administered by the Gatorade high school sports leadership team in partnership with USA TODAY High School Sports, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
Bike joins recent Gatorade Connecticut Girls Soccer Players of the Year Sarah McCauley (2013-14 & 2012-13, Chase Collegiate School), Paula Hagopian, (2011-12, Kingswood Oxford School), Riley Houle (2010–11, Windham High School), Kate McCarthy, (2009- 10, The Loomis Chaffee School), Jessica Schloth (2008–09, St. Joseph High School), Alex Uscilla (2007-08, St. Joseph High School), and Bianca D’Agostino (2006-07, Loomis Chaffee School) among the state’s list of former award winners.