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Thursday, June 20, 2013


Time to recall login and password and get moving.  The Griffins and the Gallimores have set out for Italy with the UW Women’s Soccer Team.   Four years ago the Huskies took a trip to Brazil and came back with a bit of the Brazilian culture. “Live with Passion” was the teams mantra for the trip.   There was not a more valuable souvenir to return home with than that one simple message which our team carried from that point on. 

Since then the Huskies have had 4 of the most successful years in the program’s history both on and off the pitch.  There has been NCAA tournament appearances including an Elite-8 Appearance in 2010. The program has been recognized consistently nationally for it’s Academic Progress Rate (APR), it’s graduation rate, and in the athletic department for having the highest team grade point average of any team on campus. The women in this program have gone on to play professionally, co-found non-profits, travel the world, design buildings, earn Master’s degrees and graduate and professional school admissions.  The team has had a major impact in the local community through multiple outreach programs and they have embraced becoming true ambassadors for Husky Women’s Soccer, at home and abroad.

Brushing the sweaters off the teeth in the middle of what seemed an endless journey
 Thanks to our soccer Alumni, fans, families, campers, and community partners, the Huskies raised the funds to head to Italy on their quadrennial foreign tour on June 16th. I am excited to see what lessons will be learned, what passions will be sparked and which memories will be the hallmark of this trip.   What are we looking forward to most? I would say that primarily just hanging out with our team. Sounds simplistic, but amidst training, classes, studying, laundry, cell phones usage, and the daily grind of being a student-athlete it is rare to catch a moment where the Dawgs are not thinking of what is next on their list of things to do or places to be.  Our time together in Italy will be a time to enjoy soccer, experience a different country and culture together, and to learn more about each other in a completely different environment than the one we’re used to.  

Our goal to win the NCAA Championship takes planning, time, energy, sweat, focus, and grit… but in the end the journey to success needs to be a worthwhile the trip.  After all, when you were little, nobody ever said, “Hey! You want to go out and WORK soccer? “  I distinctly remember we loved sport because we PLAYED; uninhibited and unrehearsed.
So this trip, we train and we PLAY!  We will enjoy sitting together for lengthy meals, reminiscing about the day’s events and relishing being with our Husky family.  This trip is not about skills or tactics or even polishing up the free-kicks we’ve been working on that we are sure to bury come fall.  This trip is about remembering who we are and what we love; no distractions other than each other’s company and the passion we all share.  So…Andiamo!!

Ground Zero Construction still underway

The trip began Sunday night, June 16th with a 5-hour red-eye to NY where we had a significant layover allowing us to spend the day in Manhattan visiting Ground Zero and Times Square.  A first look up close at the magnitude of destruction and the support of people from all over the world. 

Smiling, hot faces after red-eye flight to NYC

We embarked on red-eye two from JFK to Milan on Monday afternoon and arrived in Italy where we met our old friend Jon Dickinson from XL Travel, our Italian guide Elena, and our coach driver Roberto! And so our journey in Italy began….

More later... it's currently 2:30.AM. Internet konking out; computer battery low... and I think I am beginning to malfunction as well.  I will get you caught up eventually.   If you are lucky you will get to meet Carlos. 

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