Rebellious and, to a degree, self absorbed, Clare Shea got off to a rocky start at Northern Highlands, one that coach Tara Madigan made quick work to steer in a more favorable direction for the well-being of both her young prodigy and the program.
Shea endured the wrath of Madigan
, who sent a message during a regular-season contest against rival Ramapo.
A match that always carries some added juice, Madigan
had no problem anchoring Shea to the bench for the entire contest, a decision that didn't sit well with the subject.
That was a big moment for how I viewed things moving forward and Madigan
helped me to that point."
"You have to look beyond the numbers to appreciate her
Coach Tara Madigan has a track record of entrusting underclassmen with heavy responsibilities and freshmen Eva Hurm, Claire Nam and Julia Homan, along with sophomores Kayla Klatt, Sarah Kelly, Ariel Somple, Morgan Busacca and Casey Richards, repaid that faith with stellar performances.
By Clare Shea's estimation, each email that coach Tara Madigan sent to her Northern Highlands squad the night before a match had to take at least an hour to author.
No details are spared, from scouting reports to words of inspiration, Madigan
covered all the bases.
But, that's to be expected from a coach as meticulous in overseeing a program as she's been for the last 11 years in Allendale.
is a competitor to the highest degree and has always been, dating back to her
playing days at River Dell and later for Monmouth University
It may be the biggest personality trait she
instills into those who play for her
The formula seems to be working out okay for Northern Highlands
piloted the Bergen County school to a 23-0-1 record, establishing the state record for consecutive wins (65) and longest unbeaten streak (72), which it will take into next season.
The Highlanders won their third straight Group 3 state championship, shared the Bergen County Tournament title with Immaculate Heart after a 1-1 draw and, in the process, earned Madigan (215-26-11) her
200 th career win.