October 18, 2013
Versatile Amato leading by exampleEvery team has a player that leads by example and has the ability to raise the level of their teammates' play.
For Susquehanna women's soccer, that leader is senior defender Angela Amato. Listed as a defender but with the nose for the ball of a forward, Amato has been a constant presence around the net for the Crusaders since arriving on campus three years ago.
This season, Amato scored against Lycoming and has shown an ability to find the back of the net from in close and by firing a shot before she reaches the box.
Crusaders Head Coach Nick Hoover was quick to credit Amato's work ethic as a reason for her success.
"She brings a lot of intensity and hard work every day in practice, every day to the field," Hoover said.
She displays her effort frequently, racing around the field to make plays and defending against breakaways.
"The amount of work she puts in is incredible, inspiring, even, to some girls on the team," Hoover added.
"Amato's ability to lead caused her teammates to name her one of three captains for this season and last season. There are certain people that you never question their effort, and that's Ang," Hoover said. "Angela will do anything for you if she thinks it will help the team."
Amato's desire to put the goals of the team before her own and leave everything that she has on the field has allowed Hoover to use Amato outside of the area of a traditional defender, including playing an important role on corner kicks due to her ability to create chances around the net.
"At the end of games, [if] you're down a goal, you want to have your best offensive attack up there," Hoover said. "Even though [Angela] is listed as a defender on our roster, she's also one of our best scoring threats."
Amato explained that she hopes as a captain to instill in others the same motivation and self-discipline that has carried her throughout her four years.
After playing sweeper during her freshman year, Amato returned to defender, the position she had played in high school, and quickly made an impact on the team.
The Crusaders advanced to the Landmark Conference playoffs during Amato's sophomore season, and following play, she was named to the all-conference first team along with then-sophomore forward Marissa DeParto.
In the true hallmark of a leader, Amato was quick to credit her teammates for an honor. While individual in nature, she felt she would not have received the honor if not for her teammates.
"[The year] all kind of came together with that honor but it would not have been possible without the team [that] we had," Amato said.
As a senior leader, Amato has had an impact on the younger players in the program, both on and off the field, according to Hoover.
Amato explained that as a senior, she hopes to instill in the underclassmen that the score at the end of the game is not the most important aspect of a team. Looking back on her time spent on the soccer field at Susquehanna, Amato singled out the Crusaders' conference playoffs semifinal appearance during her sophomore year as perhaps her proudest moment competing for Susquehanna.
"Despite the loss, [the Catholic game] was one of the most courageous team efforts of enthusiasm and hard work and heart that I've seen in all 15 years of playing," Amato said.
Coming into college, Amato said that she knew she wanted to continue playing soccer for as long as possible, but was not initially sold on continuing to play defense. The Crusaders' coaching staff decided to move the versatile Amato to the backline for her sophomore season and the move paid off.
While her post-college plans are not set in stone, Amato said she would like to use her leadership qualities professionally, a trait she has honed as a de facto coach on the field as a captain during her junior and senior seasons.
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