Enright will never quit until she wins a championship

J. Patrick Eaken

It is not very often that a goalkeeper gets a player of the year award, but that is exactly what happened in the Northern Buckeye Conference.

Lake junior keeper Brigid Enright had 12 saves as the Flyers closed the NBC season with a 1-0 victory over league champion Eastwood (18-3). Lake finished 13-5-1 with three league losses but handed the Eagle’s their only conference loss of the season.

“That was a good one. The kids stuck to a game plan. The goal going into the game was to start playing a little more defensively first, and our goal was not to let them score. Well, we did a pretty good job,” Lake coach Don Jablonski said,

Enright’s play impressed Eastwood coach Megan Rutherford so much, that as the coaches voted, she openly supported voting Enright as POY over her own players. Enright is also the Alan Miller Jewelers All-Press Goalkeeper of the Year, an award that has been dominated by Clay keepers for most of the past decade.

“There were only two goalkeepers this season that we were unable to break down,” Rutherford said. “Liberty Benton’s goalie (Sophie) Aschemier made 31 saves over the two games against us to keep the shutout and Lake’s goalie Brigid Enright in our second round of league play. 

“For the season, we had a total of 433 shots on target in 21 games. That doesn’t include any off the crossbar or near misses. That makes an average of 20.6 shots on goal forcing goalkeepers to have to make a ton of saves to beat us. 

“Brigid is a phenomenal goalkeeper and made 12 great saves to keep the shutout against us at the end of the regular season. She was very deserving of her NBC Player of The Year award.”

Enright finished the season with 73 saves and led Lake to 10 shutouts. She was a big reason why Lake scored 70 goals and only gave up 20.

However, Enright would gladly trade the player and goalkeeper of the year awards if only her team had won a league championship.

“It was a huge accomplishment, but it really did not mean anything to me,” Enright said. “I’ve been putting in work, our team has been putting in the work, and I guess the team accomplishments were the ones I was trying to get done the most.” 

Enright said the shutout win over Eastwood would never have happened if it were not for her back line.

“That game was amazing for us. I think in that game it all clicked for us,” Enright said. “We were all able to move the ball together as a unit and defend very well together as a unit. Everyone was dropping and I think overall our communication and our energy was the best that game.

“They (back line) did an amazing job that game, too, because there would have been an unimaginable amount of shots without them and without our midfielders and our forwards there. There were definitely a lot of blocked shots by them.”

Enright beat out a lot of other area keepers, many of whom were honored by their leagues, for the Keeper of the Year award, too.

“I think by far she was the best goalkeeper of the bunch. She kept us in a lot of games, and that day we beat Eastwood she came up with some big saves, and Megan really appreciated that,” Jablonski said. “She actually stood for Brigid in the awards meeting, saying that she played really well, and even with our three losses to Woodmore, she played well in all the games.

“She works at it. Just like (Monday night), after the awards banquet she was heading off for goalie training. She is not only playing basketball; she is staying with her goalie training.”

Enright says her work to get better will never stop.

“It is very important to me,” Enright said. “I’m still in basketball season, but I’m still working out for soccer and still trying to improve my game for soccer, and my game for basketball, and I’m trying work with my teammates for soccer as well so that way we can still have that connection when we step back onto the field. 

“We’ve been putting in a lot of work in the offseason, even through this hard time quarantining and stuff, there are groups of us who would go off and work out together so that way we are still getting touches on the ball,” Enright continued.

“And we are still conditioning ourselves, even though we cannot do that with Coach. Even when we could practice together, there were a lot of us who would stay after and continue to work out, work on our touches and our shots. That is a lot of what helped me improve and that’s what helped our team improve overall, too.”




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