It would take an hour to explain the qualities of a good soccer goalkeeper, says Bates men’s soccer head coach Stewart Flaherty.
Still, adds women’s soccer head coach Kelsy Ross, “there are some key characteristics we’re looking for.”
Bobcat goalkeepers Sarah McCarthy ’18 of Rockville Centre, N.Y., and Robbie Montanaro ’19 of Belmont, Mass., fit those key characteristics to a T.
While they are rhetoric and sociology majors off the soccer pitch, on the pitch the two major in a very important quality: confidence.
In turn, McCarthy says, increased confidence has improved a key skill of any keeper: communicating with the defense and making snap decisions. “In terms of leadership,” she says, greater confidence “has been huge for me, to really let me command the back line and be able to talk.”
“Everyone can make an athletic save when they need to — we’re all college keepers,” Montanaro says. “I think what separates everybody is communication, the little things, positioning, and doing everything at game speed, especially in practice.”