By Jim Fenton, The Enterprise (Brockton)
BRIDGEWATER, Mass. -- Victoria McDonough has been one of the top women’s lacrosse players in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference since her freshman season.
The Bridgewater State University attacker from Marshfield made the all-conference second team in her first year and was on the All-MASCAC first team as a sophomore.
As a junior this season, McDonough not only made the all-conference first team again, but she was selected as the best player in the MASCAC.
After scoring a career-best 52 goals with 43 assists for 95 points to help the Bears finish second in the conference with a 6-1 record, McDonough was named the MASCAC player of the year.
McDonough ranked second in the conference in points and assists and was third in goals.
“She had a tremendous year,” said BSU coach Erica Adams, whose team was 12-5. “She really grew from her sophomore to junior year into the player we needed her to be, for sure.
“Skill-wise she improved, but I think she grew in the intangible factors.
“She put in more work, watched more film, mentored a lot of the younger players and helped them get better. She did a lot of little things that led to her to being just a little bit better than last year. All the details, she paid more attention to this year as an upperclassman.″
McDonough had 28 goals and 39 assists in 18 games as a freshman and contributed 45 goals and 51 assists as a sophomore. She will enter the 2020 season with 125 goals and 133 assists for 258 points.
McDonough is ninth on the school’s all-time career list for points and 13th in goals.
“She’s a dual threat,” said Adams, who just completed her fourth season at BSU. “She has a great balance of figuring it out. She has a great knack for the game, just a good sense for what a defense is doing, things like that.
“I think, in general, she’s just a two-way player and can be a threat as a passer or scoring herself and that makes it difficult to defend.”
McDonough moved into the BSU starting lineup as a freshman and wound up starting 11 of the 18 games, finishing first in assists and second in points. She has only improved since that rookie year and will led the Bears as a senior captain next spring.
“We had high expectations for her,” said Adams. “She knew that coming in and we worked together to create some personal and team goals and she’s grabbed them full force and has done what she can do to the best of her ability.
“I’m looking forward to having her for one more year. I think she’ll continue to grow. If she commits herself to the details again and hones in on the little things and making sure that she is getting one percent better each day, I think she can grow. I’d love to see her eclipse the 100-point mark. That will be a goal for her.”
McDonough was also picked to the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association Division 3 All-Berkshire Region second team.
Also earning spots on the All-MASCAC first team were BSU senior midfielder Elizabeth Ettridge, another Marshfield product, and sophomore defender Kelsi Brennan.
Ettridge made the all-conference first team all four seasons and was the rookie of the year in 2016. She finished with 205 career goals (sixth at BSU) and 250 points (10th).
The Marshfield High graduate recorded 57 goals and eight assists this season, ranking second in the MASCAC in goals. She had a career-best 67 goals as a junior after getting 33 as a freshman and 48 as a sophomore.
Ettridge, who was moved from attack to midfield two years ago, appeared in all 73 games for the Bears, starting 66 of them.
“It was her best year as far as being a true midfielder,” said Adams. “She came to us as an attacker and we asked her to move positions because I felt she could impact the game on both sides of the ball and I thought she did a phenomenal job of honing in on those skills.
“She was always involved everywhere, offensively, defensively, in the midfield, in the draw circles, winning ground balls. Everywhere you looked, she was there involved somewhere. In the big picture, it was her best year and I know she feels like she left everything out there and emptied the tank, and we appreciate that.”
Brennan led the Bears defensive unit, making 14 starts and coming off the bench in two other games. BSU gave up seven goals or less in four MASCAC games and she had 27 caused turnovers.
“She’s really our shutdown defender,” said Adams. “She’s very demanding of herself as far as her skillset goes. She has a very good knack for the game. She sees things happening before they happen. She understands that details are important.
“We rely on her a lot to make sure we keep top scorers on lockdown.”
BSU placed two seniors on the all-conference second team, including midfielder Lisa Moynihan and defender Kerrin O’Leary. Moynihan was on the first team a year ago.
Moynihan scored 13 goals with seven assists and finished her career with 15 goals and nine assists. O’Leary had 40 ground balls and 26 caused turnovers in her last season and scored three goals.