Senior goalkeeper, Erin Greenstein has had plenty of success for the women’s soccer team so far this season. She has grown into a leader for John Gibson’s squad, and she is the last line in a stout defense that she referred to as “a brick wall” for the Pride.
Greenstein is a team-first, unselfish senior captain, who does whatever it takes to win a game. But even she knows that she is closing in on an impressive personal goal, as the next time she records a shutout, she will have beaten the all-time shutout record for the women’s team at Springfield College.
Greenstein is aware of the record, but she has not let it hurt her performance, as she has been playing at a high level as she closes in on the mark. Instead of focusing on the significance of the all-time record or taking a few moments to talk about it, she stresses that certain aspects of her game need improvement if this team is going to meet their goal of winning the NEWMAC Championship and competing in the NCAA Tournament.
“Personally, I think I [am doing] as well as I can be doing,” said Greenstein. “I know that I need to improve my communication, so that is something that I have been working on since preseason. There are always those games that I think back on and say I wish I could have done something different, but I know how to pick myself and the team up after we let up a goal.”
Greenstein reiterated that it is much easier for her to have success in goal with the faith and trust that she has in her defense. It is easy for a goalie to bail out bad defense or save what otherwise is a bad defensive sequence, but Greenstein does not feel that is the case with the Pride. She considers herself just another piece of what is, in her mind, a very good defensive unit.
“We are always there supporting each other, whether it’s during a game or practice,” said Greenstein. “During games, we are always pushing each other to do the best we can. We are very close with one another, and it helps that our defense did not change at all from last year. We refer to ourselves as a ‘pulley system,’ because during games, we are always supporting one another and helping each other when things are not going our way.”
Greenstein is closest with two fellow senior teammates, Sara Dalton and Mary Hogan, another captain. Hogan is a part of the close-knit defense, while Dalton is a midfielder. They are closest to Greenstein not only because they are teammates to her, but they are her roommates as well. It helps Greenstein to have these two in her life, especially during the season.
“Whenever something is up, or I am frustrated, or just need someone to talk to, they are there,” said Greenstein. “We have all played together since freshman year and have grown very close.”
They are another piece of the puzzle that makes up the support system for Greenstein. The coaching staff has also played a major role in her four years in the program, as she identified goalie coach Britt Henderson and Gibson as two people that have helped to shape her as a player and a person along the way.
“I am very close with my goalie coach Britt Henderson as well,” said Greenstein. “She has been a huge help this season and really pushes me to do my best during practice and in games. Coach Gibson has also definitely had a big impact on me here at SC. I would not have come this far if it was not for him. He gave me the opportunity to play here and succeed as the years have gone by. And without him, we would not have had such a successful and dominant program and team as we do now.”
Gibson has been very pleased with the way Greenstein has progressed and with the season she is having. Gibson is confident when he heads into a game knowing that he has Greenstein in goal.
“Erin is having a big senior year, and she has already made some outstanding saves,” said Gibson. “She is also an excellent captain and leader.”
One big difference for Greenstein this season, in comparison to others, is that she knows that this will be her last season playing soccer. She is not letting that negatively affect her play, but instead appreciating each and every practice and game, while knowing that the end is near. One can count on a focused and hungry Greenstein in goal for the Pride until the final whistle is blown on SC’s season.
“It hasn’t really hit me yet that in a couple months I will be done playing soccer,” said Greenstein. “I just want to make the most out of this last season and enjoy every minute of it. This is the closest team that I have ever been on, and this experience will always be a part of me.”