DANVILLE -- Monte Vista High girls soccer coach Brett LeQuesne describes Mallory Hromatko as being like a "quiet assassin" on the field.
Indeed, Hromatko was relentless, smooth and devastatingly efficient in the Mustangs' march to two rare accomplishments -- a No. 1 national ranking and an unbeaten season.
Hromatko has been selected as the Bay Area News Group's East Bay Player of the Year in girls soccer, after leading Monte Vista (23-0-2) to East Bay Athletic League, North Coast Section Division I and Tri-Valley Classic Invitation Division titles.
Hromatko was the heart and soul of a powerful team.
"Honestly, this season couldn't have gone any better, and I have my team to thank for that, and also my coaches," said Hromatko, a junior who has orally committed to UC Santa Barbara.
Monte Vista became the first EBAL girls team to finish the season ranked No. 1 in studentsports.com's Winter Fab 50.
A withdrawn forward, Hromatko had team highs with 13 goals and 15 assists, but her impact was about more than statistics. She linked the attack and the midfielders, and led by example on a young squad that is poised for another big run next season.
"She gets on with the job at practice," LeQuesne said. "She's always the one who runs the hardest at the end -- a huge engine. She's also a really sweet kid, the kind of kid you want to root for."
What makes Monte Vista so good?
"I think it's the way we all work together," she said. "We all come from playing with each other in club, even though we all might not be on the same team. It's a really good group of girls."
Mallory's older sister and former high school teammate, Lynsey, was a freshman defender at Cal last season. Her older brother, Bryan, attends Cal Poly after playing soccer at Monte Vista.
Interestingly, Mallory's parents Dan and Vickie, both attended Monte Vista's rival San Ramon Valley, so consider Mallory one that got away from the Wolves.
"Everyone always says to them, 'How could you let your kid go there?' " Mallory said with a laugh. "My parents have been able to support me all these years, going to everything. I have them to thank for all of my soccer career."
Follow Matt Schwab on Twitter at twitter.com/schwab_matt.