January 2012 Candygrams

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January 26, 2012---Trojan Candy Ran and Yelled!

Construction of the John McKay Center is progressing every week. They've finished the red brick in the arches of the East Wing and are working hard on the two towers.

West Wing of McKay Center
West Wing of McKay Center
Center of McKay Center
Center of McKay Center
East Wing of McKay Center
East Wing of McKay Center

There were several tours today, and we passed out football posters featuring Robert Woods for the first time. Naturally, Trojan Candy got a few posters for herself!

Five new friends came, or were beckoned by yours truly, to the Heritage Hall desk today.

Anna KowalczykThe first new friend was very special. She is a Trojan swimmer. Very few swimmers come by the Heritage Hall desk. Senior Anna Kowalczyk, who is from Poland, competes in the 200 m IM, 100 m breast stroke and the 200 m breast stroke. She is majoring in Health Promotion and is pre-Med. She likes to run and ski. Anna said that she likes to go skiing in Italy or Slovakia and has skied in our local mountains. FIGHT ON, Anna!

Myles AndrewsFreshman Myles Andrews came up quickly to the desk. He competes in the 800 m on the USC Track Team. Myles, who is from Cypress, CA, and loves Hip Hop music, is majoring in Theater. He aspires to be a Dancer and an Actor. Myles said that dance keeps his muscles loose, which then helps him in running. (Maybe Trojan Candy should give Coach Ron Allice a "heads-up" about a possible training procedure!) Myles told me that he chose USC over Texas A & M, LSU, and UCLA because of Coach Allice. Way to go, Coach! FIGHT ON, Myles!

Antwaun WoodsTrojan Candy saw him walk swiftly through the lobby and RAN out after him! I YELLED his name...Antwaun! He turned around, and I asked if I could interview him. Thank goodness he said, "Yes!" Antwaun Woods followed me back to the Heritage Hall desk. He is a Freshman and still undecided in his major. Antwaun, who is from Los Angeles, plays Nose Tackle on the defensive line. His favorite singer is Chris Brown, and he loves to play "Call of Duty." Thanks, Antwaun, for coming back for your interview and picture. FIGHT ON, Antwaun!

Hannah BowenThe fourth new friend, who has "bright" eyes and a big smile, had to walk behind the desk for her interview, because there was a big tour in the lobby. Junior Hannah Bowen is a Port on the Women of Troy Rowing Team. She is from Escondido and is majoring in Political Science and Economics. Hannah likes movies and books. Her favorite book right now is The Hunger Games. FIGHT ON, Hannah!

Isiah WileyThe last new friend for today was walking through the lobby. The afternoon sun made him hard to recognize. I could only make out his braids in the shadows. So, Trojan Candy took a chance! I softly YELLED out, "Isiah!" He looked in my direction, smiled, and walked over to the desk. I knew that I would get to interview Isiah Wiley today! Isiah, who is from West Monroe, Louisiana, transferred to USC from Arizona Western College. He is a Junior majoring in Sociology. Isiah plays Defensive Back on the football team. For hobbies, he enjoys going to the movies. Thanks, Isiah, for walking over to the desk for your interview and picture. FIGHT ON, Isiah!

Seen at the SCene:

Coaches: Football: Monte Kiffin, Lenny Vandermade, Ted Gilmore, Scott Thompson; Women's Soccer: Ali Khosroshahin; Women's Tennis: Richard Gallien; Men's Golf: Chris Zambri; and Women's Golf: Andrea Gaston

Chris PoussenChris PoussenFootball: Anthony Brown, J.R. Tavai, Kevin Greene, Chris Pousson with his new haircut, T.J. Bryant, Drew McAllister, George Uko, Curtis McNeal, Josh Shaw, Torin Harris, Emon Saee, Christian Thomas, Marqise Lee, Xavier Grimble, Abe Markowitz, Nickell Roby, Devon Kennard, Jawanza Starling, Tony Burnette, Andre Heidari, John Martinez, Khaled Holmes, Peter Yobo, Cody Romness

Soccer: Carly Butcher, Christina Noriega, Ashley Freyer, Mia Bruno, Isabelle Johnson

Men's Golf: Steve Lim

Mace RapseyMen's Water Polo: Mace Rapsey posing with the Championships banner

Women's Rowing: Kajsa Olsson, Vineta Moca, Ewelina Nowak, Lauren Smolenski

Women's Water Polo: Adrienne Taylor

Track and Field: Lauren Chambers, Caroline Lutzky, Anniya Louis, Reggie Wyatt, Jade Niemeyer, Josh Mance, Loudia Laarman, Davonte Stewart, Holly Pyell, Jennifer Jones, Alitta Boyd

Heritage Hall Friends: Anna, Joyce, Christine Ovanesian, Rebecca Morin, Dan Avila, Dr. Bryce Nelson, Teresa Verbeck, Don Winston, Samantha Tulin, Delphine, Craig Kelley, Dave Tuttle, Bhupinder Singh, Don Ludwig, Irene Puentes, Ryan Maier

January 20, 2012---My Fellow Texans!

It was quite a chilly walk from the parking garage to Heritage Hall. I rushed on to the warmth of Heritage Hall while my husband Jim once again climbed to the top of the Loker Track Stadium to take pictures of the John McKay Center progress. There is always much progress at the construction sight. I've noticed that everyone who walks by the glass windows on the second floor of Heritage Hall always looks out at the construction.

West Wing of McKay Center
West Wing of McKay Center
Center of McKay Center
Center of McKay Center
East Wing of McKay Center
East Wing of McKay Center

The lobby was quiet at first. Then, seven new friends and two very special friends came to the desk.

Madelyn WaltersSophomore Madelyn Walters, who just transferred to USC from the University of Connecticut, walked up to the desk for the first time with a big smile on her face. Madelyn is from Cape Cod, Massachusetts. She is undecided in her major thus far. In high school, Madelyn played basketball, soccer, and ran track. At USC, she competes on the Women of Troy Rowing Team. Madelyn likes country music and enjoys warm weather and going to the beach. Now Trojan Candy knows two reasons WHY she transferred to USC! FIGHT ON, Madelyn!

The second new friend was too shy to have his picture taken. Sophomore Ara Altounian works upstairs in the Marketing Department. When he delivered some basketball posters to the desk for my husband and me to pass out, I interviewed him. Ara, who is from North Hollywood, is majoring in Business with an emphasis in Marketing or Management. He plays sports for fun, especially basketball. Ara's older brother Dickran graduated from USC in 2010 with a degree in Neuroscience. Another Trojan Family! FIGHT ON, Dickran! FIGHT ON, Ara!

Geena GraumannThe third new friend walked up to the Heritage Hall desk for the first time, looked at the counter, and asked, "What's this?" Trojan Candy said she could have a treat. Then, I asked if she were an athlete. Geena Graumann, a Freshman, said that she played defender on the Women of Troy Soccer Team last season. She is from Menlo Park, California. Geena, unlike Madelyn, loves cold weather. For hobbies she likes to ski and snowboard. FIGHT ON, Geena!

Tiarra JonesJunior Tiarra Jones has been involved in athletic medical training since Spring 2011 and currently works with the Track and Field athletes downstairs. She normally does not work on Thursdays or Fridays, but luckily she came by the desk today. Another new friend for Trojan Candy! Tiarra's major is Human Performance and her minor is Psychology. She wrote that her favorite course at USC was Exsc 310 Sociopsychological Aspect of Sport with Professor Callaghan. It makes sense that Tiarra wants to become a Sports Psychologist after she graduates. Tiarra is also a member of Troy Camp. FIGHT ON, Tiarra!

Michael ZulettaOne athlete that Tiarra might work with was my fifth new friend today. Senior Michael Zuletta competes in the 400 m on the USC Track Team. He is from Los Angeles and is majoring in Narrative Studies. Michael likes the alternative rock band Linkin Park. He also likes to go skydiving and bungee jumping. What a brave Trojan! Michael, like Ara, is from a Trojan Family. His uncle Percy Zuleta was a Film/Communications major at USC. FIGHT ON, Percy! FIGHT ON, Michael!

Two young ladies came to the desk to put some flyers out. They were members of the Helenes who just met in the Varsity Lounge for the Swim with Mike meeting. Trojan Candy had a nice conversation with Sophomore Meredith Nagler and Junior Tara Sardesai. (As an under-grad at USC I was in the Amazons when they changed their name to the Helenes.) Unfortunately, Meredith and Tara could not stay to be interviewed. Next time! FIGHT ON, Meredith! FIGHT ON, Tara!

Audrey and Wardell GilbreathNow, my last two friends that I will write about are My Fellow Texans! Wardell and Audrey Gilbreath walked up to the Heritage Hall desk and asked my husband and me, "What are you doing here?" We told them that we volunteer at the desk every week. Trojan Candy met Wardell and Audrey at a Women of Troy basketball game three years ago. Their daughters Briana and Stefanie are both on the Women of Troy Basketball Team. The family is from Katy, Texas. Wardell is from Amarillo, Texas. He ran track for the University of Arizona. His events were the 200 m, 400 m, 4x400 m, 4x100 m and 4x200 m. He was an Olympic caliber athlete!

Audrey ran track and played both softball and basketball. She met Wardell in Tucson. They were introduced by Cecil Fields who ran track with Wardell. Cecil, who lives in Los Angeles, was the Best Man at their wedding and attends all the Women of Troy Basketball games with them. For the past 23 years, Wardell and Audrey have managed an advertising agency in Houston. With their combined athletic abilities, Trojan Candy can see why Briana and Stefanie are such outstanding athletes! FIGHT ON, the Gilbreath Family!

Seen at the SCene:

Football: Wes Horton, Simione Vehikite, Peter Yobo (has a job already with an accounting firm, spent his break in Ghana teaching sports), Kevin Greene, George Uko, Nickell Robey, Anthony Brown, Marcus Martin, De'Von Flournoy, Matt Barkley (who waved at us from the balcony as he was walking to the Football Office), Robert Woods, Dion Bailey, Devon Kennard, T.J. McDonald

Coaches: Water Polo: Casey Moon; Lacrosse: Hilary Bowen; Rowing: Ligita Kaviere; Track: Ron Allice; Football: Kennedy Polamalu, John Baxter, Aaron Ausmus, James Cregg, Lane Kiffin, Monte Kiffin, Ted Gilmore, Justin Mesa, Ed Orgeron, Scott Robinson; and Women's Tennis: Richard Gallien (Good luck against UCI today!)

Track and Field: Reggie Wyatt, Ross McDonald

Women's Basketball: Alexyz Vaioletama

Soccer: Erica Vangsness, Anne Turner, Isabelle Johnson, Kristina Noriega (Erica and she are roommates), Mia Bruno

Women's Water Polo: Blair Moody

Lacrosse: Erin McGilliway

Heritage Hall Friends: Dr. John Petruska, Donna Heinel, Andrew Morcos, Don Ludwig, Ara Altounian, Tim Tessalone, Markisha Lea, Michael Wang, Mike Sylvester, Hal Keimi, Dan Avila, Jessica Onyepunuka, Jennifer Noriega, Teresa Verbeck, Ron Orr

After volunteering, my husband and I went to see the Women of Troy Tennis Team for a short time. They were playing U.C. Irvine. We saw a few friends there. Hal Keimi, Robert Woods, Dion Bailey, Maria Sanchez and Abe Markowitz sat in the stands with us. FIGHT ON, Women of Troy Tennis!

Trojan Candy will volunteer next at Heritage Hall on Thursday, January 26th.

FIGHT ON, until then!

January 15, 2012---The USC All-Time Leading Scorer is in the House!

There was such excitement at the Galen Center tonight! The lobby was bustling. Children were making USC signs. There were contests to sign up for. Ushers were passing out number tickets to the fans so they can try to win a coveted bobblehead.

The victorious Women of Troy Basketball Team sat at long tables in the lobby signing autographs. The Ladies defeated the UCLA Lady Bruins yesterday at the John Wooden Center. Trojan Candy went down the line and congratulated each team member. Everyone was all smiles! FIGHT ON, Women of Troy Basketball!

Kemana Otosi, Kate Oliver, Desiree' Bradley, and Cassie Harberts
Kemana Otosi, Kate Oliver, Desiree' Bradley, and Cassie Harberts
Briana Gilbreath and Christina Marinacci
Briana Gilbreath and Christina Marinacci
Michelle Jenkins, Stefanie Gilbreath, and Ariya Crook
Michelle Jenkins, Stefanie Gilbreath, and Ariya Crook
Kiki Alofaituli and Alexyz Vaioletama
Kiki Alofaituli and Alexyz Vaioletama
Dominique Scott, Deanna Calhoun, Jacki Gemelos, and Ashley Corral
Dominique Scott, Deanna Calhoun, Jacki Gemelos, and Ashley Corral

Harold MinerAs my husband Jim, my sister Pat, my brother-in-law Dudley and I sat in our seats waiting for the game to start, Pat saw a Trojan alumnus with a familiar face walking up our aisle. Trojan Candy grabbed her camera out of the bag and jumped up in front of him. It was USC's all time scoring leader, Harold Miner. He graciously posed for pictures. Harold brought his family with him from Las Vegas. His wife and he have two cute children...a daughter and a son. Two future USC athletes! The family sat four rows from us.

Men's Water Polo TeamThe first highlight of the night was when the four-peat NCAA Champion Men's Water Polo Team walked out onto the court to be honored. The team beat the Bruins in the Championship game. FIGHT ON, to the fifth title in a row NCAA Championship, USC Men's Water Polo!

Harold Miner bannerThe second highlight occurred during half-time. A.D. Pat Haden presented Harold Miner with an SC jacket. Then, as a surprise, fifteen of Harold's teammates walked out onto the court to join the celebration. Harold played at USC in 1990-1992 and was voted Sports Illustrated Player of the Year in 1992. Everyone cheered as Harold's #23 banner was unveiled. What an awesome moment! FIGHT ON Forever, Harold!

Trojan Candy was lucky to have a #3 ticket. I won one of the coveted Harold Miner Bobbleheads!

January 13, 2012---Babies, New Friends and Old Friends

The campus seemed so lively today. It is the first week of the new semester. As I walked to Heritage Hall, students seemed to be scurrying everywhere. My husband Jim took pictures of the John McKay Center. Notice the progress since last month.

West Wing of McKay Center
West Wing of McKay Center
Center of McKay Center
Center of McKay Center
East Wing of McKay Center
East Wing of McKay Center

Rocky Seto FamilyWhen I entered Heritage Hall, a lovely, smiling lady ran up to me and said, "Hello." She mistook me for someone else. Then I saw her four children and her husband. He was old friend and former football coach Rocky Seto! The lady was his wife Sharla. Coach Rocky told me that he and his family are visiting in Los Angeles for ten days. Football Secretary Irene Puentes was holding Sharla and Rocky's four month old son Timothy. What a little cutie! Kaylani (6), Mia (4), and Troy (What an appropriate name!) (2) posed with Timothy, Sharla and Rocky for this picture. Welcome home, Coach Rocky and Fight ON!

Just a few minutes later, friend Scott Thompson walked through the lobby with his daughter, Charlotte Grace. Irene, who was still downstairs, and I went over to say "Hello," smile at her, and admire her. Two cute babies in one day!

Water Polo BannerAfter enjoying the two babies, Trojan Candy looked up and, for the first time, saw the new Men's Water Polo NCAA Championship Banner. Four in a row and counting! Congratulations and FIGHT ON, Men's Water Polo!

Four new friends came to the desk today. The first two new friends came with good friend, Brice Butler (8/20/2009). Trojan Candy first interviewed Brice in August, 2009. Brice told me that he is leaving for San Diego State on Monday. He graduated from USC and will take graduate classes at San Diego State, where he will play his final year of football eligibility. Accompanying Brice was his brother Brenton Butler and friend Chelsea Dal Corso.

Chelsea Corso, Brice Butler, and Brenton Butler

Brenton Butler played Basketball at Fordham University in 2006-2011. He is now playing professional basketball in Germany. At Fordham, Brenton majored in Finance and minored in Economics/Psychology. As for hobbies, Brenton wrote that he likes to read the Bible and to work out.

Accompanying Brenton and Brice, was Chelsea Dal Corso. Chelsea is a USC undergraduate alumna of the Marshall School of Business and is currently in her second year in the USC Law School. Chelsea, who is from Stockton, will be a Judicial Clerk in Houston, Texas (my hometown!), after she graduates in May. For hobbies, Chelsea likes to run and hike. FIGHT ON, Chelsea!

Trojan Candy said "Goodbye" to Brice, gave him a big hug and told him that I will now watch any football game that San Diego State plays on television. Play brilliantly and FIGHT ON, Forever, Brice!

Josh ShawAs one very good "old" friend just left, a "new" friend just walked in. My third new friend walked in the Heritage Hall east doors and walked straight to the desk. Joshua Shaw, who just transferred from Florida, has enrolled at USC this spring. He will play either Safety or Corner. Josh was born in Long Beach and raised in Carson. He graduated from Palmdale High School. For hobbies, Josh said that he likes to sleep. (I'm sure that he won't do that on the football field!) While we were talking, Junior Pomee came to the desk and spoke with Josh and me. Josh said that he already knows several members of the team. He knows Junior, Anthony Brown, Dion Bailey, Robert Woods, George Farmer, Marqise Lee, Kyle Prater, Xavier Grimble, D.J. Morgan, Jesse Scroggins and Demetrius Wright. Josh knows one-sixth of the team already! Welcome to USC and FIGHT ON, Josh!

Kristina NoriegaMy fourth new friend walked in the door with teammate Erica Vangsness. Junior Kristina Noriega plays Center Back on the Women of Troy Soccer Team. Erica actually told Kristina what to write in my book when I interviewed her! Kristina, who is from Orange County, is majoring in Sociology. Her favorite television show is "90210," and her favorite music artist is Lil' Wayne. Kristina smiled and wrote that she likes to laugh. Then Erica told Kristina to tell Trojan Candy what she likes to do for fun. Kristina wrote that she likes to hang out with friends. Kristina, you and Erica can hang out in Heritage Hall with me whenever you want. Thank you, Erica, for directing Kristina's interview. FIGHT ON, Erica! FIGHT ON, Kristina!

Seen at the SCene:

Coaches: Football: Rocky Seto, equipment manager Jim Davis, Lenny Vandermade, Monte Kiffin, Ed Orgeron, Scott Thompson and Charlotte Grace, Kennedy Pola, Aaron Ausmus

Rowing: Ligita Kaviere

Men's Golf: Kurt Schuette

Heritage Hall Friends: UPS David (as we walked to Heritage Hall), Irene Puentes (who likes to hold babies just as much as Trojan Candy does), Dr. Bryce Nelson, R.J. Stowe, J.K. McKay, Teresa Verbeck, Kathleen DeCristo (who is taking a leave so that she can enjoy her son Ben), Greg Millward, Dan Avila and Andrew Morcos

Soccer: Mia Bruno, Erica Vangsness

Women's Basketball: Michelle Jenkins whom we wished good luck against the Bruins on Saturday

Track: Allen Williams, Melia Cox, Vanessa Jones, Alitta Boyd, Nia Ali, Bryshon Nellum, and Kemi Olonade

T.J. McDonald and J.K. McKayFootball: Kevin Greene, T.J. McDonald (who told Trojan Candy that several factors made him change his mind to stay. He said that he talked with Matt Barkley a lot and they both wanted to go to a bowl game and compete for the BCS Championship. Trojan Candy is sure glad that Matt and he stayed!), Xavier Grimble, Robert Woods, Tyler Grady, Brice Butler, Emon Saee, Augusto Alonso, Boomer Roepke, and Devon Kennard

Men's Tennis: Trojan Candy left my husband Jim at the desk while I went shopping at the bookstore. The cashier knew my name. What a surprise! Steve Lim, a Senior this year, works twenty hours a week in the Bookstore in addition to taking classes and competing on the tennis courts. What a hard working athlete!

January 7, 2012---Women of Troy Volleyball Awards Brunch

Trojan Candy attended the annual Volleyball Awards Brunch in the Galen Center Founder's Room this morning. Before the ceremony began, I walked around looking for...what else?...pictures to take. As I roamed around, I took several pictures of Women of Troy team members.

Katie Fuller, Donna Heinel, and Emily Young
Katie Fuller, Donna Heinel, and Emily Young.
Hannah Schraer, Hayley Crone, and Eve Ettinger
Hannah Schraer, Hayley Crone, and Eve Ettinger.
Lauren Williams, Mick Haley, and Jessica Williams
Lauren Williams, Mick Haley, and Jessica Williams. Trojan Candy spoke with Coach Mick Haley at this table.
Peter Kurzeka and Kirby Burnham
I saw an old friend. Peter Kurzeka of the four peat NCAA USC Water Polo Team. He and volleyball team member Kirby Burnham posed for a picture.
Kendall Bateman and Emily Young
Kendall Bateman and Emily Young.
Bria Russ
Bria Russ.
The Fuller family
The Fuller family. Krista, Katie, Bryan, and Great Aunt Barbara.
Senior awards
I took pictures of the Awards table. What beautiful Trojan awards!
Honda Award
Honda Award in Volleyball.

Honda AwardAfter the scrumptious brunch, the program began. The keynote speaker was USC Volleyball Alumna and Olympian, Kim Ruddins. Trojan Candy wrote about Kim on September 24, 2011. Kim complimented the team on its attributes and told the ladies to keep them forever! The attributes were to stay committed, balanced, enthusiastic and passionate and to show leadership. Good advice for everyone! FIGHT ON, Kim!

Alexis Olgard, Natalie Hagglund, and Sara ShawAfter the team introductions, Senior Salute and awards, Trojan Candy met two new friends. Friend Alex Jupiter, holding her Honda Award, was nice enough to pose for a picture with my new friend. Alex was chosen as the "Top Volleyball Player in the Nation" as well as the first Trojan to be named "Player of the Year"! What a double honor! FIGHT ON, Alex!

Alex Jupiter and Katie OlsovskyThe new friend who posed with Alex was Katie Olsovsky who played on the Women of Troy Volleyball Team seven years ago. She majored in Health Sciences. After graduation, Katie played professional volleyball in Europe where she played in Poland, Italy and Spain. Katie said that she liked playing for two years in Spain the most. Now, she said that she is fortunate to be working at her alma mater as the Director of Operations for the Women of Troy Volleyball Team. FIGHT ON, Katie!

Lauri Yust Zagebski and Lauren WilliamsThe second new friend sat at my table and posed with Senior Lauren Williams. Volleyball Alumna Lauri (Yust) Zagebski played at USC from 1991 to 1994. Back then, the team played in the Lyon Center. Lauri majored in Mechanical Engineering and now works at Aerospace Corporation. She was born in Oklahoma and raised in Houston (My home town!). Lauri said that she still has family in Houston. So does Trojan Candy! For her hobby, she loves to do Pilates to keep in shape. FIGHT ON, Lauri!

Congratulations to the three Seniors---Alex Jupiter, Kendall Bateman and Lauren Williams! FIGHT ON, Alex, Kendall and Lauren!