Wolves set in net
Madison Crosbie has established herself as a legitimate goalkeeper at the League1 level for the St. Catharines Club Roma Wolves this season.
The 20-year-old Niagara Falls native played only one game for the Wolves last season but this year has seen the bulk of the playing time split among three keepers.
“I’ve been happy so far,” the A.N. Myer graduate said. “For me, it’s about getting as much experience as I can. Obviously, we want to get good results but we also want to be happy with how we’re playing.
“We haven’t won every game we would have liked to, but we’ve been happy overall with how we’re playing which is also important.”
Crosbie’s playing time was limited last season after arriving to the team late only to find Emma Hendrie firmly ensconced as the starting keeper.
“Last year the intel on her (Crosbie) was that she was an outstanding keeper but Emma was playing fantastic and when you have a hot goalie, you ride the wave and she played fantastic all year,” Wolves coach Lucio Ianiero said.
Hendrie broke her foot this season playing at Brock and is expected to be sidelined all summer which has opened the door for Crosbie.
“Maddie has stepped up and she’s been the keeper we expected her to be,” Ianiero said. “She’s got a quiet confidence about her. Her stature helps her as well but our defence are comfortable with either of them. Her physical presence does help her.”
Crosbie also played basketball growing up but chose soccer as her main sport in her early teens and joined the Western New York Flash Academy.
She naturally gravitated toward playing in net, following in the footsteps of older bother Thomas, who played goal at Canisius College.
“We’re a ‘keeper family I guess,” she said. “It kind of came naturally. I used to play basketball a lot and I had decent hand-eye co-ordination and I liked it a lot.”
Crosbie feels playing goal is so much more than just making saves.
“You spend a lot of time off the ball,” she said. “Sometimes you won’t touch the ball at all in a game so for me I try to communicate and be as loud as I can. I think also you know when you catch the ball, you can feel it and you can tell if you’re on that day and also distribution out of the back. Pass it around and things like that. You’re not going to get a highlight reel save every game but it’s nice when it happens.
“I think by doing the little things well it helps boost your confidence.”
When a bad goal does go in there is only one way to deal it, she feels.
“It happens at the top level, it happens at this level. It just happens,” she said. “It’s really important not to check out for the rest of the game. I think if you do you’re probably going to mess up another one and get down on yourself but if you keep that positive attitude you should be all right.
“You just deal with it. That’s part of it and it’s also about learning and taking it in stride. If you make an error with your feet or your hands, you just do what you can with the next one.”
Crosbie is heading into her junior year at the University of Dayton where she played in two games last season and was named to the 2022-23 Atlantic 10 Commissioner’s Honour Roll after appearing in six games in her freshman season where she posted an 0.62 goals-against average.
She is majoring in exercise science with a minor in disability studies.
“I’m interested in that but I’d much rather be playing soccer,” she smiled.
The Wolves tied North Mississauga 1-1 Friday night at Club Roma.
Terin Hultnik scored for the Wolves while Olivia Cooke replied for Mississauga.
The Wolves, 4-7-3, host Darby FC Wednesday, July 12 at 8:45 p.m.
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