September 5, 2013 by conteconfidential
McKenzie Meehan, a sophomore defender on the Boston College women’s soccer team, has already established herself as a big time player. Four games into the season, Meehan leads the Eagles with four goals, scoring the only goal in a 1-0 victory over rival Boston University and netting a hat trick against Hofstra University. For her performances, she was named the New England Soccer News College Soccer Player of the Week on Aug. 26 and also the Eagle of the Week on Sept. 3. Back in March, Meehan played for the U.S. Women’s Under-20 National Team at the 12-Nations Tournament in La Manga, Spain. Conte Confidential caught up with Meehan to talk about her collegiate success, her time with the U.S. Under-20 National Team and her interesting summer break.
1) You earned numerous awards and honors back in high school and here at BC, including the Athletic Director’s Academic Achievement Award, All-ACC Freshman Team honors and being selected to play for the U.S. Under-20 National Team. What do all these awards and honors mean to you?
I was very thankful to have received these awards over the past year. The awards show me that all of my hard work and dedication are paying off. The awards are important to me in their own ways because they reflect both academics and athletics, as I value both very much.
2) You notched your first career hat trick, and scored the game-winning goal in overtime, to lead BC to a 6-5 win over Hofstra on Sept. 1. Can you describe how it happened and what you and your teammates felt after winning the game?
Because there were so many goals in the game, it all happened very quickly and I just wanted to make the most of my scoring chances. Steph McCaffrey played three great balls to me and fortunately the third goal occurred pretty early in the overtime. On the third goal, Steph was near the top of the 18-yard box and slipped a ball through to me on the left side. I took a touch and shot the ball on the high right side. My teammates and I were extremely happy and relieved that the game was finally over, and most importantly happy that we had won the game.
3) How would you describe your freshman year at BC?
I was very happy with my freshman year in terms of athletics and academics. I didn’t know what to expect upon arrival to BC. It is always difficult to know expectations prior to entering a new school, but I thought I adjusted fairly quickly. I really enjoyed playing for Boston College and improving as a player by being in such a competitive environment with more experienced players. I think the spring was also a great time for improvement because we focused more on individual and team development rather than on our opposition, the results of games or the strengths and weaknesses of other teams. We could focus solely on the development on our own team.
(photo credit: Boston College women’s soccer)
4) You had a solid freshman year, finishing third on the team in scoring with nine goals and 18 points. Now, you are now off to a good start to this season with a team-leading four goals. What has made you such an effective and important player to this team?
I think one of my strengths as a player is my ability to finish and be in good positions to score goals. Fortunately, because I was and continue to be surrounded by such great teammates, they provide me with great opportunities to score. Also, I think my work rate and focus is an aspect of my game that has helped me become influential on this team.
5) What are your expectations for this season?
As a team, we are trying to finish as high as possible in the ACC by focusing on one game at a time because the conference is so competitive. In addition, we want to improve every game and learn from our mistakes so that we can make it deep into the NCAA tournament. Personally, I want to continue to improve and develop and use my experience from last year to benefit myself in the games.
6) How different is the routine and atmosphere playing here at BC compared to your high school?
In high school, soccer had more of a relaxed atmosphere. I would say the biggest difference between high school and college is the competition between players. At BC, every player is competing for a spot where as in high school there was more of a discrepancy between the skill levels of each player. Along with that, every single game here at BC is extremely competitive with a fast speed of play. Also, college soccer requires a lot more travel, strength and conditioning training and other things like this making it more of a commitment than high school soccer.
7) Describe your experience and what it was like to represent Boston College and the U.S when you played for the U.S. Under-20 National Team
I was very happy to represent Boston College with the U.S. U-20 team at a tournament in Spain this past March. It was a great opportunity to be able to play with some of the best players in the country from different colleges and the exposure to new coaches was also beneficial. It was also fun to play against international competition because each team had very different styles of play. Overall, I thought it was a great learning experience and I was honored and thankful to be able to represent Boston College and the United States.
8) What was the most interesting thing you did over the summer?
In late May, I traveled to Madrid, Spain to take a three-week long Spanish class through Boston College called Contextos. It was a really interesting experience as I was able to visit Madrid, Barcelona and Toledo and learn a lot about the Spanish culture.
9) Which class are you looking forward to the most?
Law for the Layperson
10) What is your major?
I am in the school of Arts and Sciences but I have not yet declared a major.
Interview by Mike Yuen