Athlete’s Spotlight: Westborough High School’s Emily Humphries
By Ryan Massad, Contributing Writer
Team: Westborough field hockey – goaltender
Coach: Colleen Debish
Notable Stats: Allowed an average of only 1.63 goals per game last season (16 games)
What are some of your earliest field hockey memories?
“My earliest memory of field hockey is going to captain’s practice two days before tryouts freshman year. All of my friends were playing, and they wanted me to try it out. I was so scared, but all the girls were so nice, and the seniors that year really took the time to help me learn all the basics.”
Did you start out at a different position, or always play goaltender?
“My freshman year, I started out playing the field, but I didn’t really have a set position. Having never played before, my stick skills were terrible. My coach knew that I played softball, and was a decent catcher, so she asked me to try out goaltending, noting that it was similar to catching. It turned out I was a lot better in goal, and it worked out well.”
How do you like playing for Westborough?
“Playing for Westborough is great! We are fortunate enough to have one of the best turf fields in the area, and have a grass field to practice on as well. That way, we’re able to prepare for any opponent.”
How does coach Debish encourage you to succeed?
“Every day, coach comes out and gives us her full attention, and really pushes us to be the best athletes that we can be. I can’t ask anything more of a coach, and she has truly inspired me to be the best that I can be.”
Which teammate in particular has encouraged you to succeed?
“Two years ago, the senior goalie was Megan Sullivan. I honestly can’t thank her enough for letting me practice with her every day. Everything I know about goaltending came from her.”
What has been the single most special game of your field hockey career?
“My sophomore year, Westborough was fortunate enough to have lights for a week on the turf. I played in part of the JV game under the lights, as well warmed up with varsity. The atmosphere was amazing. Playing under the lights and hearing all of our fans cheering was the greatest moment ever.”
Do you have any college plans yet?
“Next year I intend to play softball at Newbury College.”
What is your favorite professional sports team, and favorite player on that team?
“My favorite pro sports team would have to be the USA Softball Team, and my favorite player is Valerie Arioto.”
What is your favorite class at WHS?
“My favorite classes are any of the business-related classes, especially marketing.”
What do you hope to achieve in this, your final year playing field hockey?
“As individuals players, we all hope to improve our skills, and hopefully that will improve our record from last year. And as always we’ve set a goal to make league playoffs. We didn’t reach the post-season last year, so right now that’s our number one goal. Personally, I hope to just keep improving on the field. I hope to have a few shutouts this season. Last year, I was recognized as a league all-star, and to be recognized again this year is another goal of mine. I think that would be an amazing way to end my field hockey career.”
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