Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Senior day will be ‘emotional’ for Minutewomen

As the regular season comes to a close, the three seniors on the Massachusetts women’s soccer team will have to say their goodbyes to Rudd Field.

Bryn Rothschild Shea/Daily Collegian

After four seasons, Grace Coombs (co-captain forward), Brittany Moore (defender/forward) and Lauren Skesavage (co-captain defender) will be honored on senior day, which will be held on Saturday at 2 p.m.

Just like any other senior day, UMass coach Ed Matz thinks that the final farewell will be an emotional experience, but also something that he thinks the seniors are prepared for.

“Senior day does always have a lot of emotion for the players,” he said. “It is something these three seniors have talked about and anticipated. I can’t say they are looking forward to it because they know it’s the end of their college career, but it’s something they have talked about.”

As for the emotions that he will feel as a coach, Matz thinks that there will certainly be some that he will experience on the sideline.

“It’s something that, as a coach, you’re proud of what they accomplished,” he said. “I’ve been with them for all four years, so it’s really the first time I’ve been with a group of players that long at UMass. It’s really a little bit more of emotion and sentiment for me as a coach.”

Once the seniors conclude their careers with the Minutewomen and the emotions begin to dwindle, the majority of the team will be returning next year without the talents and leadership that each of the three women have brought to the team for so long. Matz feels, however, that the seniors definitely have left a lasting impression on the rest of the team.

“I think each of the three seniors have different characteristics and leadership traits that will carry forward,” he said. “I believe the freshmen and the sophomores have taken a lot from this group of seniors and it will carry on.”

This season, the seniors have had a big part in the development of other players, and they have also contributed greatly to the team’s run at the Atlantic 10 tournament. Moore leads the team with eight goals this year.

As for leadership, the three of them have led their young team to a chance at postseason play. As for what contributions Matz will miss the most from them, he believes that it changes with each player.

“With Lauren Skesavage, she plays with such a tremendous amount of emotion. (She plays) with such heart, such drive. She brings a definite amount of energy. Just … the way she carries herself,” he said.

“Grace Coombs is just a leader on the field with her soccer ability and her knowledge of the game,” he continued. “With Brit Moore, it’s hard for me to remember a player that developed as much as Brit, having come in as a defender and making the switch over to forward this year. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a big transformation as much as Brit has done.”

Even with all of the emotions that the team is bound to experience, Matz recognizes that it still has a job to do on Saturday by saying, “We certainly hope that we have a little bit more of some unfinished business with this group of seniors.”

Tom Mulherin can be reached at [email protected].

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