January 2016 (2) Candygrams

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Saturday, January 23, 2016---Two "Old" Friends and a VICTORY!

Ray SarmientoWhat a USC tennis weekend! Trojan Candy's weekend actually started with a Women of Troy Tennis Team victory over UC Santa Barbara on Wednesday, January 20th. As my husband Jim and I were walking down the stairs to leave the match, we saw a familiar face. USC tennis alumnus Ray Sarmiento (3/11/2011) was smiling at me! Ray said that he has been playing on the pro circuit and just got back from Thailand. He'll be leaving L.A. on Friday to rejoin the tour. Trojan Candy asked Ray if he sees any former teammates on the tour. Ray said that he just saw Yannick Hanfmann (1/19/2015). With a big hug, Trojan Candy wished Ray good luck. FIGHT ON, Ray!

Yesterday in the ITA Kick-Off Weekend, Jim and I saw our Men of Troy defeat the UC Davis Aggies 7-0.

Now, today, we were back to see our Men of Troy take on the Tulane Green Wave. Tulane has the #1 NCAA ranked singles player Dominik Koepfer and two ranked Doubles Teams. Currently none of our doubles teams are ranked.

It was a tense battle in the doubles matches from start to finish. Tulane won the Doubles to take a 1-0 lead. Then in singles play, three Trojans, Freshmen Jake DeVine and Logan Smith and Junior Nick Crystal won their matches to put USC ahead 3-2. Then the score was tied at 3-3 with one match left to complete.

There was a mass exodus to Court 6 where my friend Thibault Forget (2/28/2015) just won the second set. He was tied 1-1 in the third set against Tulane's Chi-San Jao.

Thibault Forget
Here is a picture of Thibault in action.
Thibault Forget and Peter Smith
Next, Coach Peter Smith was advising him.
Thibault is ahead 5-4
To add to the drama, each player had broken serve twice. Thibault held serve to go ahead 5-4.
Thibault Forget
Click the above thumbnail to see the video of Thibault's VICTORY.
Team celebration
The Team has a winning huddle in this video.

Daniel NguyenJust as Trojan Candy finished taking the huddle video, I saw my second "old" friend. Tennis alumnus Daniel Nguyen (5/3/2012) smiled and said hello. He told me that he is taking time off from the tour because he has a back injury. I hope he gets better soon. FIGHT ON, Daniel!

Next, SID friend Darcy Couch asked Daniel and me if we would like to go down to the court. Darcy asked yours truly to be her back-up photographer. The team was waiting for us to come take a picture. Thanks, Darcy!

USC Tennis team
Here is a picture I took of the team for ITA.
Thibault Forget and teammate
My final picture is of Thibault enjoying his victory with a teammate. FIGHT ON, Thibault!
FIGHT ON, USC Men's Tennis!

Sunday, January 10, 2016---Women of Troy Basketball vs UCLA

Women of Troy warmups
There was lots of excitement in the air. There always is when the Bruins come to "town." Our women warmed up before the game.
Dorothy, Craig and Cassie Harberts
In the stands, Trojan Candy saw three good friends. Women of Troy alumna Cassie Harberts (4/18/2014) came to root for her former team. Her parents, Dorothy and Craig, joined Cassie in this picture.
Women of Troy
The team and coaches stood for the Star Spangled Banner.

Then the team ran back into the locker room for a final word from Coach Cooper-Dyke.

Women of Troy entering
The Women of Troy entered the Galen Center Court to "Fight On!" in this video.
Dance Force
The USC Dance Force stands ready to do a very energetic routine when the players are introduced. Watch them in a future game.
Next, the Women of Troy starters were introduced. Here's a video from the big screen.
Now, the tip off.
Song Girls
During a break in the game, the USC Song Girls performed.

At the half, our women led 27-24.

USC basketball players/alumnaeIn the second half, Trojan Candy saw several familiar faces in the South stands. I got my camera and walked around to the stands. There was good friend Jordan McLaughlin (5/26/2015) sitting on the front row. Behind him were current members of the USC Men's Team {Malik Marquetti, Bennie Boatwright (8/28/2015), Malik Martin, Darion Clark (3/30/2015), Chimezie Metu (8/28/2015), Elijah Stewart (3/30/2015)} and some USC Women of Troy Basketball Alumnae {Drew Edelman and Thaddesia Southall (2/3/2012)}. They all smiled for my picture! A few minutes later during a time-out, the Men's Team walked around the court perimeter, high-fiving all the fans. Our men had just beaten Arizona in four overtimes the day before! FIGHT ON, USC Men's and Women's Basketball!

CelebrationOur Women of Troy fought on, and beat the Lady Bruins 71-68! Click the thumbnail at left to view the celebration!

It feels so great to upset the Lady Bruins!