The newbies - Tucson News Now

The newbies

Tucson, AZ (KOLD) - Rachael Estopare and Lainey Burdett have extremely large gloves to fill. After all Estopare ( a redshirt freshman) and Burdett (a true freshman) are both vying for the position of starting goalkeeper for Tony Amato's Arizona Wildcats. Given who they're replacing, it's not the most enviable of tasks.

When the dust cleared on 2014 and her collegiate career had come to an end, Wildcat senior goalkeeper Gabby Kaufman had started in sixty straight matches dating back to 2012. Kaufman had recorded sixteen shutouts in her time at Arizona, good enough for second best in program history. That is the standard by which Arizona goalkeeping is now judged and for two newbies it can be a little daunting.

"Her grind and work ethic," said Estopare when asked what she had taken away from watching Kaufman for last season. "She always had the team's back."

One season later, Estopare is hoping to carry on the tradition. To do so would mean jumping straight into the fire. 

"I feel like I've gotten a lot better as a goalkeeper overall. More confidence on the field."

Which, as it happens, is almost exactly how Burdett feels about her own game. Burdett enrolled in the spring after graduating high school early, giving her more time to get to know the ins and outs of the program, a move that helped her grow more comfortable in the system.

"I was able to see how the team worked," said Burdett. "Hopefully that is able to help me in the end this season make an impact."

While they share the same position as well as some similar characteristics there defining differences between the two of them.

"Rachael definitely can manage games," said goalkeeper coach Paul Nagy. "She's composed and does a great job of organizing in front of her."

And Lainey?

"Lainey can make some explosive saves," said Nagy. "She is working on consistency. Picking out that save every time."

In order for the team to be in sync, trust in the goalkeeper is of the utmost importance. With Kaufman, there was never any doubt about her leadership. With Estopare and Burdett still young in their careers one would think that building trust may take some time. Not so, says one of their teammates.

"When they first start out, they're freshman," said junior midfielder Lexe Selman,  "but when you don't notice the age difference at all. They're amazing keepers."

As of Tuesday there was no decision as to which one will start when Arizona opens the season against Abilene Christian but to hear Nagy say it, both are going to want to be ready.

"They're both freshman driving each other to be better each day," Nagy said. "It's a great tandem. It's a great battering unit with the two of them." 

Arizona hosts Abilene Christian Friday night at 7:00pm, For more game info click here: http://bit.ly/1TXBVTz

Copyright 2015. Tucson News Now. All Rights Reserved.

  • SportsMore>>

  • Territorial Cup Series: All square

    Territorial Cup Series: All square

    Wednesday, April 25 2018 3:43 AM EDT2018-04-25 07:43:58 GMT

    The Territorial Cup Series remains tied (9-9) after the Pac-12 Men's and Women's Golf Championships.

    The Territorial Cup Series remains tied (9-9) after the Pac-12 Men's and Women's Golf Championships.

  • Manfred encouraged by impact of mound visit rules

    Manfred encouraged by impact of mound visit rules

    Tuesday, April 24 2018 7:02 PM EDT2018-04-24 23:02:46 GMT
    Tuesday, April 24 2018 11:33 PM EDT2018-04-25 03:33:55 GMT
    (Fred Thornhill/The Canadian Press via AP). Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred takes questions from the media before a game between the Boston Red Sox and the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Tuesday, April 24, 2018.(Fred Thornhill/The Canadian Press via AP). Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred takes questions from the media before a game between the Boston Red Sox and the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Tuesday, April 24, 2018.
    MLB commissioner Rob Manfred 'positive' about impact of mound visits rule change, shorter inning breaks.
    MLB commissioner Rob Manfred 'positive' about impact of mound visits rule change, shorter inning breaks.
  • Arizona Cardinals to host NFL Draft party

    Arizona Cardinals to host NFL Draft party

    Thursday, April 12 2018 1:38 PM EDT2018-04-12 17:38:45 GMT
    Monday, April 23 2018 3:11 PM EDT2018-04-23 19:11:24 GMT
    The Cardinals are set to host their draft party on April 26. (Source: Arizona Cardinals)The Cardinals are set to host their draft party on April 26. (Source: Arizona Cardinals)
    The Cardinals are set to host their draft party on April 26. (Source: Arizona Cardinals)The Cardinals are set to host their draft party on April 26. (Source: Arizona Cardinals)

    The Arizona Cardinals 2018 Draft Party, presented by Arizona Ford dealers, will take place on the Great Lawn outside the University of Phoenix Stadium from 4:30 to 9:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 26.

    The Arizona Cardinals 2018 Draft Party, presented by Arizona Ford dealers, will take place on the Great Lawn outside the University of Phoenix Stadium from 4:30 to 9:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 26.

Powered by Frankly