Freshman striker Erin Healy has enjoyed an impressive start to her debut collegiate season. Four weeks in and she’s already made a significant impact on the team.
Healy made quick work getting her name out there, scoring the first goal of her college career nine minutes into her first regular season game against the Texas Longhorns on Aug. 22. While Gonzaga went on to lose 4-3, Healy’s performance was a high point.
“It feels really good to being doing this well,” Healy said. “I have a huge support team, everyone here has been happy to help me.”
A week later, Healy continued to make a name for herself. With the Bulldogs trailing Sam Houston State 1-0 and nine minutes left in the game, Healy netted a goal to force overtime.
In the waning seconds of the match, Healy scored again, putting GU up 2–1 with one second left on the clock. This sealed GU’s first win of the year and set Healy apart as the No. 1 scorer for the team.
But this is nothing new for Healy.
In high school, Healy scored in overtime to lead her team to a win in the Southern California State Championships, landing her a spot on the All-League First Team for the second year in a row.
“She is remarkably composed,” head coach Chris Watkins said. “She’s composed, and she strikes the cleanest ball you could ever see. Combining her composure and her striking ability, we have one special player.”
Watkins also said Healy isn’t afraid to embrace hard work.
“We run a high-pressure defense and she is not used to that,” he said. “But she’s a humble, hard-working kid and she gets out there, puts on her hard hat and goes … She is so willing to learn.”
Healy came into GU with a 4.2 GPA and has already been working on her studies, with the intention of becoming an elementary school teacher.
Over the summer, she participated in Gonzaga University Summer Term. She spent six weeks getting a head start on her academics alongside practices for the upcoming soccer season. She was accompanied by all 10 other freshman on the soccer team. This was an opportunity to begin forming bonds with her teammates and create synergy on the team.
“Erin came in and she just tears up the field,” junior Jordan Thompson said. “She just has this confidence … To be a freshman coming on to an established team and making an impact is huge.”
Thompson said the team already trusts that if she has the ball, she’s going to score or get someone the opportunity to do so.
“She’s so humble,” Thompson said. “She would never brag or say how good she is … She is an incredible player.”
Healy wanted to make sure that she chose a school based on what would be good academically, not just what would be good for her soccer career.
“I made sure I loved the school,” Healy said. “I liked the community and everyone here … I really wanted to go to a small school.”
Healy is not only close to her teammates, but her sisters as well. She has two older sisters, Ashlin and Cailan. Ashlin is a sophomore at Villanova and Cailan is a senior at GU.
“I was always playing soccer with my sisters,” Erin said. “They kind of made me grow up with it.
“I like being here with [Cailan] a lot. We are super close so it’s nice to finally be able to be with her again.”
They enjoy going to the beaches together in their hometown of San Diego and going to the river here in Spokane.
“The three of us grew up really close,” Erin said. “We are each other’s best friends.”
Cailan said she is Erin’s biggest fan at GU.
“I am so lucky to not only get to go to school with her, but to watch her play soccer as well,” Cailan said. “I can’t even express how proud I am … She is one of the most incredible players I have ever watched.”
Cailan said she lived-streamed the Texas game while at the gym and could not control her excitement when Erin scored.
“I always knew she would do well here, but I wasn’t expecting her to do so well right off the bat,” Cailan said.