March 25, 2013
On Wednesday, the USC women's soccer team took an hour-long venture to the north side of the island where home-cooked food and a sunny beach in paradise awaited us. Jensen Toner, who will be a freshman on our team next season, and her mom, Mrs. Toner, graciously opened up their home right on the sand of the North Shore to our team for the entire day.
When we all arrived in our brigade of classy minivans, we could smell the haunting aroma of Hawaiian food that Mrs. Toner had been preparing all day. As we all chattered about the smell while we walked up to the front of the house, we were suddenly distracted with the breathtaking view of the white-capped waves and the beach that seemed to go on forever. Instantly, we rushed down the wooden steps and onto the sand that framed our feet with every step.
Some of the girls laid their towels out, put on tanning oil, and prepared to fry underneath the Hawaiian sun. Others went straight into the clear blue water where the waves lifted them from the ocean floor. The day could not seem to get any more perfect.. .that is, until we were informed that the food was ready. As we walked up to the house, the food smelled even better than the first time. The table was engulfed in enormous quantities of Kalua pork, spam with rice, noodles, and Hawaiian bread. Food had never tasted so good. Girls were going up for seconds and thirds, and that's without mentioning what was for dessert!
After lunch, we reconvened at the beach and finished off the rest of the day frolicking in the waves, playing beach volleyball, and tanning under the rays. As the day at the beach came to a close and it was almost time to go, Mrs. Toner put out yet another spread of delicious food. Chocolate and coconut pie and butter mochi waited for us on the table. It was the perfect conclusion to a perfect day at the North Shore. Another large thanks goes out to the Toner family for being so welcoming and providing for our team for the day!
We said our thank yous and our goodbyes, and wished Jensen a successful last semester of high school. As we left, some vans went to get shaved ice at the world famous Matsumoto's. Who knew shave ice and ice cream made such a delicious combination! Others went to the Dole pineapple factory, which is a very historical activity in Hawaii. After our amazing day at the North Shore with the Toner family, and our exciting trips to Dole and Matsumoto's, we all went to dinner to celebrate Jamie Fink's 19th birthday! We went to P.F. Chang's and had yet another tasty meal, followed by a 10 o'clock bed check in which everyone was already asleep for!
The next day was GAME DAY! Little activity took place on this day and more mental and physical preparation occurred as we got ready to take on the Rainbow Wahine at 6 p.m. that evening. The game ended with a disappointing result of a 1-0 loss to the Bows. Their aggressive and relentless attitude for the duration of the game overcame our skillful players. Although this was a disappointing loss, the defeat proved much-needed in order to provoke our aggressive mindset that is necessary every moment we are on the field. It was an eye-opening reminder that we must treat every game as if it is our most important class, with determination and poise.
On Friday, our team had finally come to terms with the game the night before. We were ready to take on a challenge. We spent our remaining hours on the peaceful island laying in the pool, catching up on sleep, and getting some last-minute shopping in before our departure. It would only be right for it to rain on our last day of an amazing trip as the famous Hawaiian rain sprinkled the ground for only a short amount of time.
On our last night in Oahu, we went to Paradise Cove, a Hawaiian luau that created many fun memories as we watched the hula dancers sway their hips with some fabulously muscular men. We ate rich food, and took many photos as the sun sank behind the horizon on our last blissful night in Hawaii. Cousin Mo, our guide and bus entertainment for the luau, made for an eventful evening of singing and dancing.
Even though the USC women's soccer team did not get the result on the scoreboard, our team became that of "one team, one heartbeat." Our trip to Hawai'i would not have been possible without our incredible coaching staff and athletic department. We can't thank you enough for all that you do for this program and for this university!
Mahalo, aloha, and fight on!!