CHICAGO (June 11, 2021) — In its 36th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, Gatorade today
announced Micaah Garnette of Gill St. Bernard’s School as its 2020-21 Gatorade New Jersey Boys Soccer Player of the
Year. Garnette is the first Gatorade New Jersey Boys Soccer Player of the Year to be chosen from Gill St. Bernard’s
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 Garnette as New Jersey’s best
high school boys soccer player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Soccer Player of the Year
award to be announced in June, Garnette joins an elite alumni association of state award-winners in 12 sports,
including Alexi Lalas (1987-88, Cranbrook High School, Mich.), Steve Cherundolo (1996-97, Mt. Carmel High School,
Calif.), Abby Wambach (1997-98, Our Lady of Mercy School of Young Women, N.Y.), Heather O’Reilly (2001-02 &
2002-03, East Brunswick High School, N.J.), Matt Besler (2004-05, Blue Valley West High School, Kans.), Jack Harrison
(2013-14, Berkshire High School, Mass.) and Mallory Pugh (2014-15, Mountain Vista High School, Colo.).
The 5-foot-9, 150-pound senior forward led the Knights to a 13-0-1 record and the Central West C, Non-Public
Tournament championship this past season. Garnette scored 21 goals and passed for 14 assists including one of each in
Gill’s 3-2 win over the Pingry School in the sectional title game. The NJ.com Player of the Year, Garnette was a 2020
United Soccer Coaches High School All-American selection. He concluded his prep soccer career with 62 goals and 30
Garnette has volunteered locally with the Special Olympics and as part of multiple community service initiatives
through his church. “Micaah is a constant threat to score or create a goal for a teammate,” said Joe LaSpada, head
coach of Bernards High. “Just when you think your game plan for stopping him is working, his exceptional speed and
soccer sense allow him to elude a defender.”
Garnette has maintained a 3.58 GPA in the classroom. Garnette has signed a National Letter of Intent to play soccer on
scholarship at St. John’s University this fall.
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 Player of the Year Selection Committee, which works with
top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine
the state winners in each sport.
Garnette joins recent Gatorade New Jersey Boys Soccer Players of the Year Brendan McSorley (2019-20, Delbarton
School), Tommy Scalici (2018-19, Morris Knolls High School), Sebastian Chalbaud (2017-18, St. Benedict’s Prep), and
Mason Toye (2016-17, Seton Hall Preparatory School), among the state’s list of former award winners.
Through Gatorade’s cause marketing platform “Play it Forward,” Garnette has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant
to a local or national youth sports organization of their choosing. Garnette is also eligible to submit a 30-second video
explaining why the organization they chose is deserving of one of twelve $10,000 spotlight grants, which will be
announced throughout the year. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants have totaled more than $2.7
million across 1,117 organizations.
Since the program’s inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of
professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming
coaches, business owners and educators.
Micaah is a St.Kitts-Nevis U17 International player and the son of Gladwin Garnette former St.Kitts-Nevis National Basketball Player and the Grandson of former Maton at the JNF the Late Nurse Sylvia Garnette .
To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes,
visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com, on Facebook at facebook.com/GatoradePOY or follow us on Twitter at