GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - This was supposed to be the year for Amanda Moore and her ECU women's lacrosse program. Season three was looking really good. The pieces seemed to be finally coming together. The Pirates were 5-3 through their first eight games.
But then COVID-19 struck, prompting the NCAA to cancel not only lacrosse, but the entire spring sports season. Now Moore and her Pirates are left wondering what's next.
"You just feel your heart drop through your chest," said Moore in a Zoom interview with Tyler Feldman on Sunday afternoon. "Probably the most emotional I've ever been in my coaching career."
Moore was emotional because she had to inform her 35 student-athletes, as well as her coaching staff that this season, which really just got started, is now officially over.
"This is obviously bigger than all of us, the health and safety of our globe is more important than lacrosse games," added Moore. "But it was a really hard conversation to look your team in the eyes and say that's it, it's over."
All that hard work, all that sacrifice and now the team's two seniors are left wondering if they'll ever put on the purple and gold ever again. Mackell Shultes and Emma Bowman helped build this three-year-old program from the ground up. Now, they are left in the dark.
"After you've put in months and months of training and hard work and preparation, and you're on what feels like, at least to me, as the coach, was on the right track," said Moore. "It just makes it a little bit more challenging when you care that much and believe that much to lose something like that."
But this unforeseen spring break is providing Moore with perspective.
"I love this job," added Moore. "I miss coaching. I miss lacrosse. ECU lacrosse is very much a part of my life and my family. I love what I do, and I think that having this kind of taken away just reaffirms it."
It's also providing hope, a message she shared with her team.
"Sports teaches you to overcome challenges," said Moore. "And this is a challenge you're going to have to use that skill to overcome this."