This keeper kept the door shut
Cota made opponents think twice about shooting - and stopped them if they did.
Emily Cota, Upper Perkiomen's standout goalkeeper, made life miserable for would-be goal-scorers this season.
Just her presence was intimidating, and even the best scorers second-guessed their ability to get the ball past her. That's why they often passed the ball instead of firing it toward the net.
The ones confident enough to challenge the senior routinely walked away empty-handed.
For the season, Cota tied a school record with 10 shutouts. Brittany Moses also recorded 10 shutouts in 2004.
In addition to tying Moses' record, Cota had a 0.79 goals-against average and gained National Soccer Coaches Association of America/Adidas all-America honors.
Because of all that, Cota is The Inquirer's Southeastern Pennsylvania girls' soccer player of the year.
"This year's goals were to try to be an all-American and to at least tie the school record for shutouts," Cota said. "I wanted that more than anything else. But I was able to accomplish both of those goals because of the team I had this year."
Making all-American and tying the school record shouldn't come as a surprise. The University of Massachusetts recruit was a NSCAA/Adidas East Regional all-American as a junior, and she finished her career with 38 shutouts and 613 saves.
"Not only does she make the saves that you think a goalkeeper should make," said Terry Underkoffler, who retired as the Upper Perkiomen coach after the season, "she makes the saves that you think a goalkeeper has no business making."