HARWICH – A few years ago, Sean Deveau never could have imagined he would solidify his college plans while wearing a facemask and remaining six feet apart from his family, friends, teachers and coaches.
While the COVID-19 pandemic altered his senior year experience in many ways, Deveau, a Harwich resident and three-sport athlete at Monomoy Regional High School, still feels grateful about all he’s experienced this past year.
The memorable moments began in the fall when the standout goalkeeper recorded 17 saves to help the Sharks boys soccer team earn a 2-1 victory over Sturgis East in the Cape and Islands League Lighthouse Tournament championship. Deveau added one final high school soccer memory to his collection March 11 when he signed his Letter of Intent to attend and play men’s soccer at Rivier University in Nashua, New Hampshire, during a signing day ceremony held at Monomoy.
“At the beginning of the (soccer) season, we didn’t know what the season was going to look like or if we’d even have a season at all,” said Deveau. “So just to have a season and end it with a league championship and then personally end it with this is a great feeling.”
The week before signing, Deveau visited Rivier’s campus and was given a tour of the athletic facility by men’s soccer coach Hayden Barbosa. As they talked about the program, which competes in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference at the NCAA Division 3 level, it became apparent to Deveau that Rivier was the right spot for him.
In addition to his connection with the Raiders men’s soccer coaching staff, there were other details about the school that caught his eye, beginning with the new athletic complex.
“They just redid the whole athletic center,” he said. “All of the locker rooms, the athletic stadium—it’s all brand new and amazing.”
Rivier also opened a new science and innovation center last year, which was perfect timing for Deveau, who wants to study biology and environmental sciences. Lastly, the university is a Catholic school—another important component for the Monomoy senior.
“I love the campus and it’s got that Catholic component which I’m proud of a lot,” Deveau said.
There were a few other factors that led Deveau to his decision, including Nashua’s location to the Cape. It’s close enough that his parents, Terry and Katie, can visit for games but it’s not close enough that he’ll feel as though he never left Harwich.
Deveau was also told he’ll have an opportunity to earn playing time as an underclassman, as Rivier’s goalkeeper situation includes a current freshman in addition to another incoming freshmen who will join the team at the same time as Deveau.
“(The coach) said the position is wide open,” he said. “It’s the best-case scenario.”
When asked what he’d like to do after college, Deveau said he’d love to be around animals and work as a zoologist or zookeeper, ideally in Florida.
But those dreams will have to wait for at least a few years as he begins a new chapter of a soccer story that began when he was about 12 years old. Protecting the net came naturally to him, as Deveau handled goalkeeping duties throughout middle school and maintained that post during his high school career, which included playing for the Cape-based AC Independence soccer club team in addition to Monomoy.
Deveau was a forward for the Sharks boys basketball team this winter and he’ll play defense for the lacrosse squad this spring. He loves playing those sports but his heart is truly between the pipes on the soccer pitch, which is why his signing ceremony, which was attended by his family, friends, teachers and coaches, was a meaningful moment Deveau will always cherish.
“It’s really great for all these people to come out,” Deveau said. “My family, friends, teachers and coaches, I love all of them and they all helped me to get to this point.”
Email Brad Joyal at firstname.lastname@example.org