HOLLAND – A standout in field hockey at Council Rock South since arriving on Rock Way in 2013, recent graduate Caroline McGovern didn’t wait long to make her college intentions known.
With offers to play at Princeton, Penn and Georgetown, the three-time first team all-state selection also considered Syracuse and Duke. While she inked the deal in February, Caroline committed to Boston College in the fall of 2015.
“I knew I wanted to be in a city,” said McGovern, of her selection process. “I knew I wanted a bigger school that was not only academically rigorous, but also athletically competitive.
“It really came down to UPenn and BC. And BC really fit me as a person, compared to everywhere else I was looking.
“I felt like when it really came down to it, that was the place where I was going to be the most happy.”
After scoring over 100 goals for the Golden Hawks, McGovern picked up right where she left off, notching her first collegiate goal for Boston College – a double overtime game-winner Sunday, Aug. 27 in a 2-1 Eagles’ win over Albany.
Before graduating from Council Rock South in June, McGovern set single-season records for points (87), goals (39), while tying Mollie Sheehy’s 2013 record for assists (17). She scored the 100th goal of her career in overtime last October in a big win over Neshaminy that helped the Hawks secure first place in the Suburban One League (SOL) National Conference.
“Caroline left quite an impression on the Council Rock South program,” said Hawks head coach Lisa Belz, of the Churchville native. “Boston College is lucky to be getting such a skilled and motivated player.”
Last year, CR South went unbeaten in the SOL National Conference (17-6 overall), toppled ninth-seeded North Penn in a District 1-AAA Round of 16 matchup before falling by the same score to top-seeded Unionville in the D-1 quarterfinals.
McGovern lists the Hawks’ ensuing 2-1 triumph over No. 4 Methacton that sent the team to states among her career highlights at South. With the sides deadlocked at 1-all, classmate Sarah Womer notched the game-winner.
“Sarah scored the (game-winning) goal with a minute left to send us to states; it was surreal,” explained McGovern.
Additional highlights include a pair of league championships, she said.
“Winning leagues both times, especially going undefeated (last) year. We had a couple overtime games against Neshaminy and (Council Rock) North and winning those was definitely a huge accomplishment.”
Caroline credits Belz and the Hawks hockey program with helping to improve her skills.
“I’ve learned so many different skills in the center of the field – where my teammates are and it’s really developed my vision on the field.
“Off the field, I really learned to how to be in a leadership role and communicate with my teammates. I feel like if it wasn’t for Lisa (Belz) and Collete (Paprocki) and Maria and Sam and my other coaches, the captains and the other girls in my class, I feel like I would have never gotten to the point where I was in my senior year – to be able to play at the level that I did.
“I noticed it; my whole family noticed it.
“It was the perfect experience going into college.”
Last summer, McGovern and her Princeton Field Hockey Club team captured the prestigious U19 National Club Championship, knocking off defending champ WC Eagles, 2-1, in the title tilt. Named a member of the U.S. Field Hockey U-19 National team late last year, McGovern spent her summer competing in the USA U-19 Junior National Camp tournament.
TOP PHOTO: Recent Council Rock South graduate Caroline McGovern (5), left, has already begun her career with the Boston College Eagles field hockey team. (John Gleeson – 21st-Century Media)