Rising Star to Watch: Spital thrives in the Brandeis limelight
Published: Monday, September 10, 2012
Updated: Monday, September 10, 2012 19:09
When an athlete transfers to a new school, it can take a while to adjust to a new setting — especially coming from a place where winter’s presence is minimal.
A native of Florida, women’s soccer forward Dara Spital ’15 has adapted quite well. She has already notched five goals this season and figures prominently in the Judges’ future plans.
Spital was a highly touted prospect in high school. She garnered many honors before college, winning the Florida Dairy Farmers Female Soccer Player of the Year title twice and the ESPN Rise High School National Player of the Week award.
“I’ve been playing for 15 years,” said Spital. “That’s pretty much my whole life for club and for school.”
As a first-year, she played at the University of Central Florida. However, despite registering an assist in her first year for the Knights, she struggled with injury problems.
Following a frustrating campaign, she decided that she might thrive with a change in scenery.
Spital reconnected with several former Brandeis players who were teammates with her in Florida. The rest is history.
“I played with some former Brandeis players in Florida, and I met the coaches, and I loved them,” she said. “Brandeis seemed like a good fit because it was “a small school with a big focus on academics.”
Spital noted that her fellow players make her feel right at home.
“I love every single one of my teammates,” she said. “I wouldn’t be able to do anything without their help. Our team is extremely unified.”
Team unity is very important to Spital. She cited that teamwork is one of the most important aspects of a successful team.
“I see my strength as just being a team player, and I don’t care who does what as long as it gets done,” she said. “Whether I’m making the pass or making the run, I’ll do whatever it takes for our team to win.”
Spital also stated that communication and a will to win are factors that fuel her motivation.
“You just communicate, battle and grind it out,” she said “When you have the right people and the will to win, you’re in good shape.”
She has been very satisfied with the progress that the Judges have made so far this season and is very excited for the future.
“We communicate better and practice has gone better since the beginning of the season,” she said. “I really like how it’s going so far, and I’m excited for what is next.”
Though Spital’s impact has clearly benefited the Judges—who are 4-0 at press time—they’re not done yet. As the team develops its chemistry and increases understanding between players, Spital’s presence could turn Brandeis’ squad into a force that could potentially make a splash in the University Athletic Association as October and November roll around.