Athlete of the week: Kate McAteer is a goal scoring phenom for the Cavs

Published 8:08 am Wednesday, February 22, 2023

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Kate McAteer is on fire to start her senior year at Callaway. Despite playing just six games this season, she has tallied 17 goals. She’s averaging nearly a hat-trick a game as opponents have no answer for the red-hot Cavalier forward.

She buries the ball in the back of the net aplomb, but her game is about more than just scoring goals. She links play and channels the attack through her movement and ability to pass as well. 

“I love scoring goals, but I also love assisting my teammates and just helping everybody else out,” McAteer said. 

McAteer has not been a Cavaliers as long as some of her peers — transferring in before her junior year — but hit the ground running in her first year and has elevated her game to a new level in her final year in red and black. It was not the easiest of transitions at first, but her newfound Cavalier family embraced her with open arms.

“This school has meant the world to me,” McAteer said. “It is a family. Everybody is in it together and very supportive of each other. It was great to come and be a part of this kind of community.”

In the span of a year, she went from new face to senior leader for the team. She is now a captain for Callaway and commands the attention of her teammates.

“I have had to step up and be more of a leader for the team this year,” McAteer said. “I want to uplift everybody around me, but I do have to call somebody out if they are not doing the right thing. It’s about making sure we are all working together.”

Last year, she was the younger member of a formidable Callaway attacking duo with Keeley McGuffin. Now, she is the elder statesman with junior Autumn Brown, who has seven goals and 10 assists on the season as the two have formed a natural partnership since McAteer arrived at Callaway.

“Autumn Brown has really stepped up this year,” McAteer said. “She has really shined for us and has assisted me a bunch of times. She makes amazing runs and is a really good player.”

While soccer has been a part of her life as far back as she can remember, it is not the only sport she enjoyed over the years. She started playing volleyball during her freshman year of high school and has been an integral part of the Callaway volleyball team the last two years. She was a key figure on the Cavalier team that made school history with the program’s first run to the state quarterfinals in the 2022 season. 

“To be able to be a part of the team that hung their first banner in that gym was a surreal moment for me,” McAteer said. “It was such an exciting experience, and I loved playing with those girls.”

Winning is all she knows, and she wants to translate the success the volleyball team had into a successful season on the pitch. 

“We want to become region champions,” McAteer said. “That is the main goal for us this season. I also want to make a deep run in the playoffs, but we want that region championship.”

It has been a good start for the Cavalier soccer team that now sits at 5-1. McAteer is a big part of the reason why. She is enjoying herself on the pitch and getting rewarded with goals for her efforts.

“I think we are playing to everybody’s strengths right now,” McAteer said. “I think we are gelling well together right now. Even the younger players have come in and added a lot. I feel like we are an even more experienced team this year.”

This is the final run for McAteer, who does not plan to pursue an athletic career at the next level. Injuries have taken their toll and McAteer is looking forward to focusing on school. She plans to attend Samford University and despite hanging up her cleats after this year, this likely will not be the last time you hear the name Kate McAteer.