By Taylor Shillam | Photo by Amy Waddington
Mackenzie Goings, Senior Lake City High School
“Mackenzie Goings is a remarkable young lady. One of the best I have had the privilege to coach and know,” shared Lake City soccer coach Matt Ruchti.
At 17, Mackenzie is a senior at Lake City, a four-year varsity soccer player, and highly regarded as a great student.
“Throughout playing soccer (both club and high school) and volleyball, I have been able to keep a 4.0 GPA and was in the top 10 percent of juniors in Idaho,” she said.
“There are no days off for Mackenzie,” Ruchti said. “Her dedication to her sport and academics are displayed daily. She has qualified for State High School Soccer all four years. She has been a starter all four years.”
As an athlete, Mackenzie felt her biggest challenge was choosing between two sports she loved. “I used to play club volleyball and soccer. When high school came around, I had to choose which one to play at that level,” she said. “It was one of the hardest decisions of my life. I went with the sport that I felt I would have the most success with." She decided to focus solely on soccer.
Through athletics, Mackenzie has learned how to make an impact within a team.
“Playing soccer, I’ve learned many lessons, but the most important lesson I’ve learned so far is how to adapt and change to what those around you need,” she said. “Every year, the team changes, so you get used to adapting and changing to help in whatever way possible.”
Mackenzie was a senior captain of the soccer team at Lake City. “She was chosen for this role as a result of her on- and off-field leadership abilities,” Ruchti explained. “Although she is quiet in her demeanor, her impact is powerful. Always willing to help her teammates. Always plays hard. She sets the tone for others by how hard she plays. Just like in the classroom, she never cuts corners, and sets the bar for the work that is needed."
Her players and teammates look up to her for these qualities and more, and the admiration is mutual.
“The thing I enjoy most about soccer is being able to play with a team of girls who are amazing,” she said. “Scoring and winning games is always fun, but the connections I’ve made through the sport are some of the best in my life.”
Mackenzie has had many accomplishments, Ruchti said, but “her everyday approach to training and school work have been the most impressive.”
Next fall, Mackenzie will apply that approach at the University of Idaho, where she plans to pursue a career in engineering. “I have always been good with math and have been fascinated with how things work and are built.”