Buff & Blue Forever Presented by Capgemini: Megan McCormick
On GW Senior Women’s Soccer Day last fall, Megan McCormick and his other five winners had a big demand: The Colonials dropped the lights in their locker room, turned on a multi-colored strobe, and swung over to Taylor Swift. Wildest dreams.
The impromptu dance party set the tone for a 2-1 rainy win over St. Bonaventure on an unforgettable October afternoon on the Mount Vernon campus.
“I just remember being so happy,” McCormick said with a laugh. “This is how I want to remember playing football at GW. Just all the good times I had like that with my best friends.”
Over five years in Buff and Blue, McCormick’s commitment to excellence on and off the pitch set a shining example for her teammates, and the Delaware native’s caring and positive leadership style brought the Colonials together. and kept them united through the ups and downs. to come in a football season.
McCormick’s impact was particularly evident during GW’s momentous run of 2019. Beyond his consistent play at center-back anchoring a defense that has allowed just 25 goals in 21 games and his five best scores In her career, the three-season captain has been instrumental in helping a new group culminate at the right time on their way to the show’s first final appearance since 1997.
“She connected with everyone on our team,” GW head coach Michelle demko noted. “She made sure to speak to everyone. She understood that everyone’s value matters and is critical to the success we had in the fall and want to keep moving forward. I think when you have a leader like that, really shows, and our players really believed a lot in Meg. “
McCormick’s early days at GW helped shape his understanding of leadership.
Two weeks after her first preseason with the Colonials in 2015, staff asked her if she would consider wearing red shirts to boost her strength and experience.
After agreeing, McCormick wasn’t sure he had made the right decision. It was difficult to watch every game from the sideline.
Still, she got into the Boy Scout teamwork to the best of her ability. The praise of veterans like Kristi Abbate and MacKenzie Cowley for her approach to an often ungrateful role meant so much back then.
“It was definitely a big adjustment, but it was also a really good learning experience,” said McCormick, who would start 74 games and register nearly 7,000 minutes in his four seasons on the field. “There were so many girls on the team who recognized what I was doing and how hard I was working to be a good teammate that it was worth it.”
Looking back, McCormick is grateful that he had the opportunity to wear a red blouse, as it set the stage for last fall’s fantastic result.
It was clear right away that the Colonials had the knack for a special season, but there were so many new faces that the construction chemistry was going to take a long time. A rooftop barbecue during fall camp helped bond, and the camaraderie grew from there – a team dinner and a locker room dance both.
After a season opener loss to William & Mary, GW put together a 16-game unbeaten streak that included a 7-0-2 start to A-10.
“Things went at the right time,” said McCormick, who was listed on the first team of all conferences. “We had so much fun on and off the pitch, and I really think that contributed to our success.”
The Colonials entered the conference tournament as a No.2 seed and picked up victories over Saint Joseph’s and UMass for the chance to play for a title.
At the end of the 2-1 win over the Minutewomen, McCormick had the opportunity to take a look at Hermann Stadium in Saint Louis and soak up the moment.
“I had never been in this position before,” said McCormick. “It’s funny as a fifth year, you’re like ‘Oh, I’ve been through it all’, but I’ve never been in this situation before. I remember thinking ‘Wow, this really does happen.'”
While GW’s bid for an A-10 title and a berth in the NCAA failed against host Billikens two days later, the ending hasn’t diminished the group’s good feelings.
McCormick has been invaluable the entire way. The defender’s physical presence at the back made the difference time and time again, while her constant communication helped keep the unit organized. His strength in the air has become a major offensive weapon for the Colonials on set pieces.
Add in the leadership, and Demko struggles to quantify everything McCormick has done for this team.
“It was one of the most rewarding seasons for me that I have ever coached,” said Demko. “It really had nothing to do with winning and losing, but it had everything to do with how this group came together and loved each other. And Meg was a big, big, big reason for that. . “
Ultimately, McCormick’s legacy at GW extends beyond what she helped the Colonials accomplish on the pitch.
McCormick received her undergraduate degree in Organizational Science with a minor in Psychology last May, and she just completed the first of three years working on a Masters of Health Administration with a view to a career in the medical field.
McCormick’s friendship with Special Olympian Jeremy Wayne got her involved there.
Last school year, she helped organize a Special Olympics kickball tournament at Vern, and she led her team’s efforts to raise thousands of dollars for the organization through the DC Polar Plunge over the two last years.
As much as anything else, these efforts highlight the secret to McCormick’s success.
“I want to be remembered as a good teammate and a good friend and someone who gave more than he took,” said McCormick. “Someone who was there for people and who tried to be a positive light and energy in everyone’s life.”