Spotlight on Girls Lacrosse Coach Ms. McManus

What Goes into Coaching a Team?

Sydney Brundage, Contributor

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Abington High School’s Girls Lacrosse coach Meredith McManus is hopeful about the team and their season so far. The season began the Monday after St. Patrick’s Day and will go through the end of this month. In the first week of June, playoffs start.

McManus has been coaching lacrosse for seven years, first at Cardinal Spellman High School from 2012 to 2015, where she started the lacrosse program, and then at Abington starting in 2016, where she took over the coaching position. Coach McManus said that this year’s seniors [Maddie Grafton and Emma Coe] will be the first group of girls I have coached at Abington from their freshman year to their senior year so it’s a special group to me!”

Seven years of coaching lacrosse has provided McManus with much knowledge, as she has seen a lot of different situations and many different teams. She prepares the team to play 18 to 20 games. Preparation for games is very important and we get ready in a few ways,” she said. “I watch a lot of film on our opponents and bring that information to practice.” Watching the films to prepare for a game helps the team better understand their opponents.

“The girls [on defense] Brandi Rix, Kaitlyn Thetonia, Erin Doherty, Faith Kramer, Elizabeth Campbell and Jill Cabral do a great job off the bench and are always aware of what defense they run and who their top scores are. We take that information and come up with the best strategy we see fit,” McManus said. Besides watching films, the team is “also always working on fundamentals in practice,” she said.

The team practices a lot. McManus said that “in an average practice they start with our stretching and dynamics and we do some running. Next is a drill we call our ‘every days.'” Coach McManus calls them that “because we do them every day.” The girls also “get into ground balls, draws, shooting and passing,” she said.

But it is not all routine work. McManus is “also big on team bonding,” she said.  “You will always find some music playing. It’s a fun atmosphere,” she added.

McManus said, “We graduated a big senior class last year which included our program’s leading scorer, Courtney McCabe. Marissa Golden also graduated last year with 100 goals.” As of mid-May, the leading scorers this year were Maddie Grafton (46 goals), Liberty Woods (13 goals 6 assists), and Emma Coe (9 goals). Grafton is seven goals away from reaching 100 goals.

McManus said that getting into the tourney “has been our season long goal. I think we are a bit underestimated as we are so young, but the girls are handling things well. I am very proud of the way the team has stepped up this season.”

Currently, the team has two more regular season games, Wednesday and Friday. Then, they head into the tournament.

Keep up the great work and good luck with the rest of your season!

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