Senior Spotlight: Defender brought stability to women’s soccer program

Gina Bonura was one of the fortunate senior athletes who saw how her final season would play out. Unfortunately, she’s still a part of a class that didn’t get the chance to see how her entire senior year would finish.

“I would say I am very thankful for both the soccer team and Waynesburg in general,” Bonura said. “It became my second family and gave me the opportunity to enjoy the last four years so much.”

Bonura is a native of Moon Township, located about an hour north of Waynesburg. Over her four years, she’s been a consistent starter. The now senior defender has helped the women’s soccer program more than just on the pitch. 

“Honestly, Gina was a diamond in the rough for us,” Waynesburg coach Laura Heethius said. “I was just starting out at Waynesburg when she knocked on my office door with her mom while she was on a campus visit. We spoke for a while and I knew she came from a great high school with high caliber players.”

Staying somewhat close to home, there were multiple reasons Bonura thought becoming a Yellow Jacket was right for her. Looking back, she’s happy about how everything worked out. 

“I found Waynesburg because of the forensic science program,” Bonura said. “Having both my major and being able to play soccer brought me to Waynesburg. Now that it’s over, being a part of the soccer team created some of the best memories and friendships that I’ll always carry with me.”

“Gina has been the most consistent defender we’ve had at Waynesburg,” Heethius said. “You knew she would give everything she had every day in training and in every game. We could rely on her to be a great one on one defender. She then grew each year to be a great attacker out of the back and finally, became a great leader.” 

There’s certainly room for Bonura to be thankful, Despite not making the postseason, Bonura still has a lot to reflect on. 

“I’m most thankful for my coaches and teammates,” she said. “Living in 74 Wayne with all my roommates made us a lot closer and we had fun times. Playing in the alumni game along with getting to see and play with all my old teammates is one of my favorite memories.” 

Heethius knows what she had in Bonura, both as a player and a person. 

“Gina is a blue collar hard worker who is willing to do whatever it takes to get where she wants to go,” Heethius said. “She is very driven as a person and is extremely loyal. She is not a leader by voice, but by her actions. I hope those actions have rubbed off on our younger girls on the team.” 

Bonura plans to stay in Pittsburgh post-graduation and find some type of laboratory job.