This Proud Jersey Girl is super proud of a New Jersey teen who's sooooo close to being Rio-bound for the summer Olympics. Track star Sydney McLaughlin is poised to compete in the U.S. Olympic trials, which got underway Friday in Oregon.

What makes the story even more impressive to me is she attends my alma mater, Union Catholic Regional High School in Scotch Plains!

McLaughlin recently was named a Gatorade Player of the Year, and got the honor from a personal hero, Gold medalist Allyson Felix.

There's so many reasons to root for Sydney — as she's a motivated 'millennial' with amazing talent, ambition and empathy (she's done a good deal of community volunteer work in between racing). It's also impressive to see the program at my old school in Union County has grown to support such an outstanding athlete.

I'm really hoping to cheer on runner Sydney McLaughlin, along with the Jersey women on the U.S. soccer team, as the games unfold in Brazil. And, I'll be sure to keep track of more NJ athletes who make the cut for Rio. After all, "Proud Jersey Girls" definitely stick together.

Proud Jersey Girl Erin Vogt’s first reporting gig involved her Fisher Price tape recorder. As a wife and momma of two kiddies, she firmly believes that life’s too short to drink bad coffee.  A fan of the beach, Dave Grohl and karma, in no particular order.

Follow her on Twitter and on Facebook as ProudJersey.