Former L’Anse Creuse North soccer player finds success at NCAA level
For many athletes, the transition from high school sports to Division I athletics can be challenging.
Aside from the difference in the level of competition, many athletes are living away from home for the first time, and that kind of a change in a person’s life can take some getting used to.
This season, she’s a junior and a seasoned veteran. But early in her freshman season with the Eastern Michigan University women’s soccer team, former Macomb L’Anse Creuse North player Angela Vultaggio found herself getting used to a lot.
In order to make the most of her experience as a student-athlete, adjusting to life at Eastern was going to have to be an important part of the equation. Vultaggio made one, and things went well enough for her to come away as the Mid-American Conference Freshman of the Year.
“At first, when I joined here, I had a rough patch,” she said. “I wasn’t used to being away from home. But then I got to know the girls more and adjusted big-time, and I just love it here. I really like the competition, and I’m still learning. So far, I’ve enjoyed the D-I experience.”
Contributions Vultaggio, whose hometown is Chesterfield, has made to the Eagles’ squad haven’t gone unnoticed by her coach.
“Angela is a great kid from a great family,” said Eastern Michigan coach Scott Hall. “Very hard-working. She’s one of our front-runners. She’s a goal-scorer — very creative. She’s played quite a bit (of) games. For her, it’s been great because she continues to get better year after year. She continues to get more confident. The expectations were for her to score goals, and she’s done that; she’s done a very good job of it.”
Vultaggio credits work and extra training as keys to making it as far as the Division I level. She has also received support along the way from her family, as well as some coaches, such as L’Anse Creuse North coach Scott Boice, and Henry Steinwascher, who coached her at the club level.
“My mom helped me out big time — so did my dad,” she said. “(They have) supported me throughout this whole experience. My high school coach told me tips (about) the school and the coaches. My club coach from the Michigan Gators told me the coaches were great. He’s (Steinwascher) a great coach. They were (looking) out for me. Without them, I don’t think I would be here.”
While some positive memories have come about as a result of her time at Eastern, Vultaggio has also given some thought to life after college. And while part of her future may include continuing to play soccer via summer teams, as far as the work world goes, Vultaggio as has a pretty good idea as to what it is she would like to do.
“I’m taking the classes now for special ed,” she said. “I’m excited because I love working with children with special needs. I’m excited to be their role model. Watching (them) achieve something is really rewarding to me. I’m excited for that.”