Jamel Smith, Contributing Writer
The Utica College Women’s Soccer team had another successful season, making it to the Empire 8 championship. Despite the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the team’s focus and determination improved their quality of play and propelled them to achieve goals set earlier in the season.
Olivia Papay, a sophomore defender and health studies major, was one of the players who helped the soccer team find success. She is from Waterville and fell in love with the sport from the first time she played at 6-years-old.
Now that your season is over, what were the ultimate goals the team had in order to have a successful run?
With Covid and being on and off pause in the fall, we were really determined in the spring to make the most out of every practice and give it our all in the games we played. I think we all wanted to just play soccer and were grateful we got to play some games this year.
What was the team chemistry like and how did that affect the team’s performance on the field?
Our team all had the same goal and mindset which was giving it our all and trying to live up to our past season. We all motivate each other whether it’s on the field or on the sidelines and it creates a positive environment.
Do you feel like being a key contributor to the team affected you in any way? If so how?
I would say everyone on the team contributes in a different way. Every player is different and has their own style of playing, which makes us better players at the end of the day. We all push each other during practices so we can work towards getting better every day.
What is the plan moving forward to ensure the same success next season?
Coming off this season I think everyone is motivated to make it as far as we did in the spring and do everything we can to be successful. I think after our last game that everyone wanted to keep playing soccer so we all have that motivation to push this summer.
What are your plans for this off-season to make sure you are better prepared for the next season?
My plan for the next season is to come in really fit and ready to play. I’m definitely excited to play a full season of games and get to know our incoming freshmen. I think that we definitely have that drive to win a championship in the fall.
Do you feel satisfied with how you played this season?
Yes. I think that this season was very successful, definitely looking forward to getting back at it in the fall even stronger.