June and July 2015 Candygrams

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Sunday, July 5, 2015---Congratulations, Amy!

Our USA Women's Soccer Team just won the World Cup Soccer Championship!

Congratulations to friend, USC Alumna and USA Women's Soccer Team Member, Amy Rodriquez!

Trojan Candy first met Amy on October 31, 2008. She stopped by the Heritage Hall desk, posed for a picture and then went on to a soccer game against Cal. Amy had already led the Women of Troy to its first NCAA Soccer Championship in 2007!

She won an Olympic Gold Medal in Soccer in 2008.

Amy RodriguezThe next time I saw Amy was on August 19, 2012. She had just won her second Olympic Gold Medal. She let me hold it! It was very heavy.

Here's Amy holding her second gold medal.

Now, she just won the World Cup in Soccer today!

What a Champion!


Tuesday, June 16, 2015---Football Camp for Ladies

Max TuerkTrojan Candy was a little late to the Women of Troy "Football Camp for Ladies." I was rushing to the John McKay Center when I saw a familiar face. It was Max Tuerk. He was just sitting on a bench in the park area near the School of Cinematic Arts Complex II. I stopped long enough to take his picture, but I didn't stay to interview him. After all, I was late. Then, after I checked in at the John McKay Center, I thought, what the heck if I am late, I'm going back to interview Max. And I did! However, when I went back to the bench, he was gone. Next time and FIGHT ON, Max!

When I returned to the John McKay Center, some football players were walking on the sidewalk. Naturally, I took their pictures. What the heck if I am late!

Steven Mitchell
Steven Mitchell posed for this picture. FIGHT ON, Steven!
Joel Foy and Matt Lopes
Then, I asked Joel Foy and Matt Lopes to let me take their picture. FIGHT ON, Joel! FIGHT ON, Matt!
John Plattenburg and Leon McQuay III
Further down the ramp, Trojan Candy took a picture of John Plattenburg and Leon McQuay III. FIGHT ON, John! FIGHT ON, Leon!
Andrew Silvers
Just as I walked in the door, there was a Men's Water Polo player. I snapped his picture. So nice to meet and FIGHT ON, Andrew Silvers.
Antwaun Woods
The next picture I took was of Antwaun Woods. Trojan Candy seems to see Antwaun everywhere! FIGHT ON, Antwaun!

Luckily, when I eventually arrived downstairs on the half indoor football field for the "Football Camp," the ladies were still mingling and eating the continental breakfast. Phew! Didn't miss a thing.

Trojan Candy and JuJu SmithI take that back.... I had to go back upstairs to have friend Pierson Clair take my picture with JuJu Smith. Since I was the last lady to have my picture taken with JuJu, I was able to talk with him a little bit, and ask him to autograph the football cards that we got at the spring game for my four grandsons. Thanks and FIGHT ON, JuJu!

Randall CunninghamAs JuJu just finished signing the cards, a young man walked out of the Football Locker Room. They greeted one another. Then, Trojan Candy asked JuJu who he was. When JuJu said he was Randall Cunningham, well, I took out after him. Luckily, I caught up with him. Randall was very hospitable. Unfortunately, I didn't have my notebook with me, so I just asked him a few quick questions. First of all, I congratulated Randall on beating the Bruins at the annual track meet. That brought a big smile from Randall. He said that he is from Las Vegas. I knew that his dad's name is Randall and his dad was a quarterback in the NFL for sixteen years. I asked Randall did he like to play football, and he said that he liked competing in the High Jump better. Randall is majoring in Business Administration. When I asked him why he chose USC, Randall said, "When I came here, it felt like home." Home, Sweet, Home, Randall! So glad that you chose USC! FIGHT ON, Randall!

Sara Hughes, Anna Collier and Alexa StrangeNow it was time for the program to begin. Trojan Candy went back downstairs to our table. As soon as I did, friend Sara Hughes came to visit. Sara said that she will be playing Sand Volleyball all summer long. Then, the two of us walked to another table to visit with Sara's teammate Alexa Strange and Coach Anna Collier. I was able to look at a Beach Volleyball magazine that featured our Women of Troy Sand Volleyball Championship Team and Sara with partner Kelly Claes, who won the Championship in Pairs. Then, I took this picture of Sara, Coach Anna and Alexa. FIGHT ON, Sara! FIGHT ON, Alexa!

Keidane McAlpine, Dominique Randle, Sydney Sladek and Jen KleinAs I walked back to my table, Trojan Candy saw two Women of Troy Soccer players and their coaches. They all smiled for this picture. They were Head Coach Keidane McAlpine, Dominique Randle, Sydney Sladek and Associate Head Coach Jen Klein. After I took their picture, Dominique told me that she recognized me from Heritage Hall. I recognized her, too! FIGHT ON, Dominique! FIGHT ON, Sydney!

Just then, Nutritionist Kristy Morrell took the podium and gave the audience an extensive report about how she teaches all the athletes about good nutrition. Trojan Candy learned so many good tips from her.

Anna Collier, Sara Hughes, Alexa Strange, and Jordan MooreJordan Moore then took the stage along with Sara, Alexa and Coach Anna Collier. Coach Anna told us what was the key to an undefeated season. "The team was so close this year. There was a huge team dynamic. They practiced six days a week and held one another to a higher standard. That's how they won the national championship!" FIGHT ON, Women of Troy Sand Volleyball Team!

Keidane McAlpine, Dominique Randle, Sydney Sladek and Jordan MooreNext to join Jordan Moore on the stage were Dominique Randle, Sydney Sladek and Coach Keidane McAlpine. Coach Keidane spoke about both of his players. He said that Dominique and teammates Mandy Freeman and Whitney Pitalo play on the back line. No one is getting through us. As for Sydney, she was a two-sport athlete in high school competing in track and field and soccer. On our team she is a mid-fielder. FIGHT ON, Women of Troy Soccer Team!

After the two forums, there were Sand Volleyball and Soccer workshops. Coach Anna showed my friend Eiko Bates how to hit the volleyball properly, and Coach Keidane gave soccer tips to other participants.

Anna Collier and Eiko BatesKeidane McAlpine

Next, there was a delicious chicken salad lunch.

Steve SarkisianAfter lunch, it was Coach Steve Sarkisian's turn at the podium. He told us that the team reports on August 7th and practice starts on August 8th. The team is in summer workouts now. Two-thirds of our recruiting class is here. He said, "We're going to be a dynamic football team."

Ricky Town, Cameron Smith and Jordan MooreNow it was time for the football players to come on the stage. Jordan Moore returned as the moderator for quarterback Ricky Town and inside linebacker Cameron Smith. When Sarkesian was hired as the head coach at USC, Ricky decommitted from Alabama and signed with USC. Ricky told us that the USC offense is similar to his high school offense. He said that he grew up watching Matt Barkley play. Ricky said that Cody Kessler is a great "big brother."

Cameron Smith and Ricky TownCameron said that his role model is alumnus Brian Cushing, and he looks up to Lamar Dawson because Lamar plays hard and plays fast. In closing, Brian said, "It's awesome to be at USC. I'm blessed to be here. I love it!" When, the two players left the stage, Trojan Candy ran over to talk with Ricky and take their picture. FIGHT ON, Cameron! FIGHT ON, Ricky!

Cody Kessler and Jordan MooreThen to everyone's surprise, quarterback Cody Kessler walked up on the stage to join Jordan. Cody told us that he was accepted to the Master's Program in the Annenberg School. He will earn an M.S. in Communication Management. Cody answered a few questions from the audience. About the hand signals from the sideline: "One is real and two are fake." About what he does after the games on Saturday: "I hang out with students and fans." About how we are going to beat UCLA: "I will stay healthy. It's the last game. I'm not losing to those guys again." With that, the interview was over!

Cody KesslerTrojan Candy had already walked over to where Cody would exit the stage and took this picture of him. Then, Cody was nice enough to sign the cards for my grandsons. Since I first met Cody in Heritage Hall in 2011 when he was a Freshman, we spoke for a little bit, Thanks and FIGHT ON, Cody!

Trojan Candy lockerNow it was Coach Sark's turn to present information about new plays, new formations and new tackling rules. Trojan Candy learned a lot. Thanks, Coach Sark!

Finally, all of the participants were able to go into the football locker room. I ran to my locker, but there was no occupant. Hopefully, one of the new recruits will be in my locker in the fall.

Mark Sanchez locker This locker did catch my eye because the donor was Mark Sanchez.

Zack TraversiAs I left the locker room, I met yet another new friend---water polo player Zack Traversi. FIGHT ON, Zack!

Another exciting, educational and memorable day in the John McKay Center!

Trojan Candy is on vacation until football practice begins. See you again in August.

FIGHT ON, until then!