Q: Last year, you fell out of a starting role, and this year you’ve found your way back into one. What’s been the biggest difference from last year to this year for you?
CT: First of all, we are playing a different formation this year, so the forward/midfield position that I’m playing is a new one that we didn’t have last year. Also, losing players like Nico (Colaluca) and Bakary (Soumare) to the pros opened up some spots. But I’ve worked hard for this new position, and it’s a role that I feel as if I’ve taken.
Q: You were the leading scorer for the team last spring. How much of that experience gave you confidence coming into this season?
CT: The spring was huge for me. It gave me confidence knowing that I can score goals, and that’s something that I think is expected of me now, to producegoals and assists. That’s what I love to do, so I’m glad that the spring gave me the confidence to start this season off right.
Q: Right now, you are the team’s leading scorer and you’ve already matched your career high for goals in a season with three in the first four games. What are you doing differently this year that’s making those goals happen?
CT: I don’t know if it’s me really doing anything differently. It’s the way that we play. The offense that we have this year creates lots of opportunities, and I’ve been benefiting from that. It’s been nothing specific on my end, really, just the dynamic of the team.
Q: In your time here, how has your role changed on this team?
CT: My first year, I was a guy who got some minutes here and there, and then second year I pretty much played every game. Third year, I had less of a role than I wanted, but this year I am really going to get a chance to contribute. It’s kind of been a roller coaster ride, but I’m glad it worked out that way. I wouldn’t change anything.
Q: So far, the team’s off to a good start (3-1). What do you anticipate for the rest of the season?
CT: In terms of record, I can’t really say, but I think we’re a team that’s going to do well this year. We do have some issues that we need to figure out, but I think that we’ll be strong throughout the season. It’s good that we were able to take a loss early in the year, because it shows us what we need to work on.
Q: What’s been the most exciting on field moment in your career?
CT: I had three assists at Boston College my second year. I’m from Boston, so my family and friends don’t get to see me play that much. Being able to have a good game in front of them was great.
Q: Looking to the future, what are your post-graduation plans?
CT: I wish I had a good answer for that one, but I don’t. I’m just kind of waiting to see where this season takes me, and where that takes me after.
Q: What are you going to miss about being a Cavalier?
Competing everyday. I am a really competitive person, and soccer and sports have always been a big part of my life. Not knowing whether they are going to continue to be makes me a little bit nervous. UVa. is a place where sports are importanteveryone loves to watch them, loves to play themand I’ll really miss that.
Q: What’s the biggest thing that you have learned, being a part of this program, that’s going to help you for the rest of your life, whether you continue with soccer or not?
CT: The biggest thing is the commitment that I have made to my soccer career. This program has helped make me into a young professional, so whatever I do, the commitment level, the dedication, and the hard work that it’s taken to play soccer at UVa. will carry over to whatever I choose to do after soccer.