Penn Charter’s McMahon to play soccer at DeSales

Molly McMahon missed her senior season at Penn Charter with a hip injury. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Molly McMahon finally got some good news.

But it came after a string of bad luck.

It started in March when McMahon, now a senior at Penn Charter High School, suffered an injury that caused her to have surgery in November.

After the surgery, she suffered a C Diff infection that landed her in Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Then last month, she was diagnosed with coronavirus.

Not exactly a great start to her senior year.

“When I got hurt last year, at first I thought I hurt my groin, so I rested it and then tried to play,” said McMahon, who missed all of soccer season with the injury. “I got an X-ray, and it didn’t show anything. So then I had an MRI, and they saw I tore the labrum in my hip. So I needed surgery.

“Then I ended up in CHOP with C Diff, it’s an infection people get after surgery. So that wasn’t fun, either.

“And in January, (she and her mother) were diagnosed with COVID-19. So it’s been really a difficult year. I was saying 2020 wasn’t my year, so I’m hoping 2021 will be.”

So far, other than the coronavirus diagnosis, which she’s doing much better from, 2021 has been pretty good for the Somerton resident.

Not only is her recovery from the injury coming along nicely, she now knows where she’ll be going to college.

Last week, McMahon committed to DeSales University in Lehigh County. The school was the perfect fit in every way.

“I love the campus, I’m excited to do nursing as a major, I really liked the dorm rooms, I liked the soccer coach, so it had everything,” McMahon said. “It’s about an hour away from my house, so it’s not too far, I can see my family and they can come up to see me. And I like the people, everyone was really nice.

“I went up for a visit and met with the assistant coach and talked to the head coach on the phone. We talked for about an hour, and she was very easy to talk to. Conversation was really great. All of my questions, everything I was looking for, she helped me. The assistant was great. Conversation flowed. I think I can get a lot from them.”

They’ll get a lot from McMahon.

In high school, McMahon has been a two-sport athlete, excelling at both soccer and basketball. This year hasn’t been ideal, she missed all of soccer season and has yet to play basketball, but she hopes to get back at some point.

But for her career, she’s enjoyed a lot of success, especially in soccer, her main sport. And Penn Charter has helped her grow her game. Now she’s fully comfortable with playing either outside midfield or outside defender.

In college, she’ll probably play outside defender, but she’ll certainly bring versatility with her to DeSales..

“I’m not usually the girl who scores the goal, I’m the person who gets the person scoring the ball, I get them there,” said McMahon, who plays the wing in basketball. “I think (DeSales) is leaning toward playing me at defender. I love that. I love playing defense.”

She wished she had a chance to finish off her career at Penn Charter, but the injury ruined that. Still, she was very much a part of the team and continued to contribute even though she wasn’t on the field.

“We only got four or five games in, and since I was hurt, I couldn’t play and that wasn’t fun,” McMahon said. “I was really upset about it. It was my senior season. But I was still a captain, I went to every practice and game that I could. If I wasn’t at physical therapy, I was there. I made most of them.”

She might not have any stats for her final year, but she does have some good numbers in other areas. Despite the injuries and illnesses, she maintains a 3.8 grade point average in the classroom, and will enter DeSales in the nursing program.

“I wasn’t sure how well I’d do because of everything and because of how hard Penn Charter is, but we were very happy with my grades,” McMahon said. “Penn Charter stresses education, so you really have to work there. The school is great. It’s a great atmosphere and it’s very alumni heavy, if that makes sense. People who go there really love it. My dad went there and he loves it.”

She hopes to carry the Penn Charter education with her to college.

“I’m really excited to do nursing,” McMahon said. “I’ve always grown up with teachers. Aunts and uncles, my mom. I thought I was going to do that for the longest time, but then I shifted to nursing. I really like helping people and I know it will challenge me. I’ll be a nursing major, and then I’ll decide later if I want to be a nurse practitioner or a physician assistant.”

But she still has work to do at Penn Charter.

She hopes to return to the court at some point, and she’ll stay busy with school and her job, where she works at the FOP.

“I do catering and hosting, and sometimes I’ll babysit,” McMahon said. “The catering is difficult because a lot of stuff goes with it, and it was hard when I was hurt, but I’m 50 to 60 percent now, so I’m good. I love to do (hostings and catering) because it switches things up. I love working there.

“I really want to play basketball if I can and have a good end to my senior year. It’s been great so far, other than the injury. I love everything about the school. I came here on GA-PC day when I was in eighth grade and I loved the school since then. I’m glad I came here, it was a great decision.”