A Jersey Girl has taken American Idol by storm this season! Atlantic County teen Mara Justine has advanced, out of thousands of hopefuls, to the top 14 of the singing competition. Her striking duet with pop star Rachel Platten on 'Fight Song' earned a standing ovation from the judges, Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan.

Mara tweeted her excitement and gratitude on Monday night, writing "Thank you for believing in me," and adding her 'wildest dreams' have come true.

The 15-year-old standout from Galloway is keeping her momentum strong this week, after showing her 'softer side' in tribute to a fellow Jersey native, Whitney Houston.

Mara's rendition of Houston's The Bodyguard hit, "Run to You" has been making the rounds online. Live voting begins this Sunday night, so New Jersey will have a chance to show their love for Mara! American Idol airs Sundays and Mondays on ABC.

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.

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