Coach Liz McFarland grew up in Fort Meade, MD, and currently resides in Roswell with her husband, Marty, and their 17-yr-old triplets, Kate, Alex, and Sam. She attended Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in Lynchburg, VA (it has since become a co-ed institution and is now called Randolph College). She is a Goretti House mentor and is involved in her neighborhood book club and running marathons. She has completed 17 marathons and is now training for her 18th.
How did you get involved in LAX? I played lacrosse in high school and then went on to play in college. After college, I played club lacrosse and then became involved in coaching youth lacrosse.
What was your college athletic career like? What did you like and what did you NOT like about being a college athlete? Honestly, there was nothing I did not like about my college lacrosse career. I absolutely LOVED playing in college. I enjoyed being around my teammates and had a lot of fun. Admittedly, it was hard at times trying to juggle academics, playing a rigorous game schedule, and trying to have somewhat of a social life. But, I would do it all over again.
How did you come to work and coach at BT? When our family first moved to Roswell, I ran with a friend of mine who happened to be a parent at BT. She constantly talked of how wonderful the school was and the benefits of a Catholic education. In 2007, our daughter Kate participated in the girls lacrosse camp at BT, and that is when I first met Jan Podhorez-O’Donnell. Next thing I knew, I was a community coach helping Jan and the girls lacrosse program. Fast forward to 2009, and I was hired as the assistant director of development and the assistant coach for the girls lacrosse program. In 2010, Jan was promoted to assistant athletic director and I was named the head coach. My children are members of the Class of 2017 and are currently juniors at BT.
What exactly do you do at the school? Part of my job, my primary role is to coordinate our annual Auction Gala. BT’s annual Auction Gala is the single largest fundraising effort for the school. As such, it takes a tremendous amount of time and effort, not to mention an army of volunteers, to have a successful event. Honestly, it is probably the most rewarding part of my Development job. It is amazing to watch our community come together for the benefit of the school. I like to say we put the FUN in FUNdraising for BT!
My secondary, and equally as fun, job is the head coach for girls lacrosse. I truly look forward to the spring each year and to being outside playing my favorite sport! We have such talented players and it is always an exciting season! For the past two years, we have made it through the playoffs and have been in the semi-finals of the state tournament.
What has been one of your favorite moments at BT and why? I remember when I first heard Father Anthony who was visiting from Ghana give the homily in an all-school Mass…something about his message of love and the community coming together just resonated with me. I absolutely adore it when he gets everyone singing Humble Yourself Before the Lord He Will Lift You Up. He just makes everyone feel good!
You have your kids here at school…any funny stories you would like to share? Perhaps the time when my boys went way over their lunch allotment with SAGE Dining and our FACTS account practically quadrupled in one month? Not sure they would want me to share the details of that! HaHa! Suffice it to say, it was several months before they got that privilege back.
As a coach what is one of your favorite go-to sayings/quotes/mottos? I bet my players could tell you! Probably the word I use most is “Groovy”. I am a very big proponent of girls in sports, so I really like the saying “She believed she could, so she did.” I try to live my life by the motto “Treat others the way you want to be treated.” And, probably my most favorite is ” ‘It’s impossible’ said Pride. ‘It’s risky’ said Experience. ‘It’s pointless’ said Reason. ‘Give it a try’ whispered the heart. ”
If your house was on fire and you had time to recover only one inanimate object, what would you save? At first, I was going to say a CD with the film of our wedding as well as the birth of our children. But then, I would probably have to retrieve my computer…not enough time if there was a fire. So, I would have to say my Bible. I have all kinds of notes and pictures inside it…as well as my marriage license and our birth certificates.
What two qualities do you consider essential in a friend? Honesty and humor.
If you could change one rule that you must follow at home/school, what would it be? I really wouldn’t change any of the rules…although, I think it would be great to allow faculty/staff to be casual on Fridays.
What is your favorite book/movie/musical artist? My absolute all time favorite book is Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet. It’s about one man’s lifelong passion and quest to build a cathedral. Set in the 12th century, there is intrigue, conspiracy and politics. It is hard to pick a favorite movie…I like so many. I should probably mention two though…Ocean’s Eleven and Skyfall. I do watch these quite often. I also really enjoyed The Help. Probably the one I have enjoyed ever since I was a young girl is Black Beauty. I never tire of watching it. As far as favorite musical artist? Hands down it’s The Rolling Stones. My husband and I took our kids to see them this past summer when they played at Georgia Tech and it was AWESOME! My favorite Rolling Stones song is Gimme Shelter. When Lisa Fischer sang it with Mick Jagger it was incredible!
If you could have dinner with someone who is dead, who would it be? I would like to have dinner with Margaret Thatcher, Maya Angelou and Ronald Reagan.
What is your biggest pet peeve? When people are disrespectful and do not treat others kindly.
What are you most talented at? I think I am a pretty patient person. Not sure if that is considered a talent…I am also fairly organized.
What is the weirdest food you’ve ever eaten? Wow…that would be a toss up between beef tongue or Escargo…no, I did not like either.
List 5 things you like: Travelling, reading, skiing with my family, cooking with my husband, and coffee ice cream.
List 5 things you do not like: OKRA – I really do not like okra, RAP music, conflict, impatient people, and being told I can’t do something (e.g., like run a marathon).