Mackenzie Gibbs, 2017 FCS Graduate, Looks to End Collegiate Soccer Career on Positive Note
Fellowship Christian School graduate Mackenzie Gibbs enters his final season of college soccer at Coastal Carolina University this fall.
Since joining the Lady Chanticleers three years ago, the 5-foot-8 midfielder has helped the team post a 26-25-4 record, including a 16-12-5 mark in the Sun Belt Conference games.
The team is coming off a 7-9-2 season overall, including a 5-4-1 conference record.
"It was nice," Gibbs said of the 2019 season. "I thought it was a good season. We had a big freshman group, but also a lot of seniors. A lot of the seniors were starters. We were knocked out in the first round of the playoffs, so it was a disappointing ending. Although we were better off than a lot of sports as we were able to finish our season."
Gibbs has notched 15 points (six goals, three assists) and 32 shots on goal during her career at Coastal Carolina. Her career single-season highs include three goals, 12 shots on goal and 20 games as a freshman, and three assists, seven points and 37 total shots as a junior. She started a career-best 12 contests during both her freshman and junior seasons.
"This is my last season," Gibbs said. "It's really weird to think about, but I want to have a good season. Obviously I'd like to score more goals, but I really want to focus on it being my last season. I want to give it my all for every practice and every game, and be a good leader."
Last season, Gibbs scored the game-winning goal in the 2-1 conference win at Arkansas State, and tallied a goal on a penalty kick in the 2-1 home win over Troy. She was named to the Dean's List (3.5 GPA or higher) for the 2019 fall term, and earned President's List (4.0 GPA) honors for the 2020 spring semester.
The 2017 Fellowship Christian School graduate started two games and played in 15 contests for the 8-8-1 Lady Chanticleers in 2018. The team went 7-3 in Sun Belt Conference contests. She scored the tying goal in a 1-1 tie against Winthrop.
Other Coastal Carolina honors for Gibbs include being named to the 2018 Coastal Carolina Dean's List, the 2017-18 Sun Belt Conference Commissioner's List and the 2017 Coastal Carolina Dean's List.
At Fellowship, Gibbs was a three-time MVP (sophomore, junior, and senior seasons), and was selected as Max Prep Player of the Year her senior year. She led the Lady Paladins to the 2016 GHSA Class A State Championship, the 2015 state title game, the 2014 state semifinals and the Elite eight in 2017.
The team captain her senior year, Gibbs tallied 172 points (62 goals, 48 assists) during her FCS career.
She has some advice for the 2020 FCS graduates heading to college sports.
"It's going to get hard, whether you are playing a lot of not," she said. "Stay all in, and don't take it for granted. Enjoy it because it will be sad when it's over."
A biology major, Gibbs plans to take a gap year and work in the medical field following graduation from Coastal Carolina this spring. She plans to take the MCAT and ultimately attend medical school.
"[Being a doctor] has been a long-time goal since high school," Gibbs said. "I always wanted to do something in the medical field."
Gibbs and her Costal Carolina teammates are slated to head to Conway, S.C. to begin preparing for classes and the soccer season on July 13. Pre-season practices begin Aug. 3.
(Photos courtesy of Coastal Carolina University)