NASHVILLE, Tenn. – When Emily Whitcomb was young, she was the kind of kid who kept elementary school teachers on their toes. Her boisterous personality couldn't be contained. Put lightly, she was a talker.
With years of maturing and direction though, Whitcomb (Elmhurst, Ill.) learned to harness her voice for good as a very vocal senior leader for the Belmont women's soccer team. Whitcomb is there to encourage but also to remind her fellow Bruins its OK to have a little fun sometimes.
"The main point of playing a sport you love is to enjoy it," the affable midfielder said. "I think sometimes we forget about that. A big thing for me is to enjoy every moment of it.
"I like to use my voice and my personality to keep it from getting too serious, help people remember we're here to have fun. We're so blessed to be able to play the sport we love every single day. It's good to remember to enjoy the moment. Be happy. Everything's going to be OK."
Belmont was the last university Whitcomb considered during her recruitment in high school, scheduling a last-minute visit to Nashville. The people and scenery left an immediate impression.
Her decision was clear that first weekend as she sat with her mother at a restaurant a few blocks from campus in the Hillsboro Village area. A rough pros-and-cons list sketched out on a napkin leaned heavily in the positive direction.
Thinking back on that moment pushes Whitcomb to double down on her live-in-the-moment approach.
"Enjoy the moment you're in right now because in four years – one month for me and the other seniors – college is all going to be over," she said.
Whitcomb has been a force in the midfield for Belmont in her four years, earning five or more starts every season. She notched a career-high four goals as a junior and already has one in the net during her final campaign.
Closing in on a degree in corporate communications and marketing, Whitcomb hopes to soon put her voice to good use in a new direction. She completed exciting marketing internships the past two summers, one with pro soccer team Nashville SC and the other with Chicago-based law firm Jenner & Block.
"I like making relationships with people and that's a big part of communications and marketing," Whitcomb said. "I've always been attracted toward that kind of profession."
Whitcomb and the Bruins are back in action this Friday on the road at Eastern Illinois. That game is slated for 3 p.m. with a home contest against SIUE following on Sunday at 2 p.m.