Senior midfielder Sam Mewis is back for season two of Mew's Views. Mewis helped lead UCLA to its first-ever NCAA Championship in 2013 and is back for her senior season with the added arsenal of experience playing with the full U.S. Women's National Team under her belt. Mewis, a three-time all-conference player and a 2013 NSCAA Scholar All-West Region selection, has scored 54 points on 17 goals and 20 assists in her UCLA career.
We kicked our season off strong last Friday when we beat Maryland, 3-0, in our first game of the 2014 season. The game was a lot of fun, and we were able to see what we need to work on for the rest of the season, as well as put on a solid performance and pull out a win. Maryland was a talented team and an unfamiliar opponent to us, so it was a great experience to play against them.
On Saturday, we had some post-game regeneration, as well as some pre-game preparation as we did our best to get ready for Sunday against UC Irvine. We achieved the same outcome on Sunday as we did on Friday, winning 3-0 against a quality opponent. UC Irvine gave us a different style to match up against, and it took a lot of hard work and concentration to overcome their tough defense. I want to give a shout-out to our entire back line and especially Katelyn Rowland for tying the school shutout record with 38 career shutouts. Hopefully we can help Katelyn surpass the record this weekend.
I've had quite the eventful week outside of soccer with my boyfriend, Pat, who is visiting this week from Boston. Amanda took us surfing on Tuesday, and we both had near-death experiences that I'm grateful we survived. I think we both belong on land. Rosie, Abby, Caprice and I took Pat to Santa Monica on Wednesday night to swim and take pictures with Rosie's new GoPro camera. We had so much fun because the waves were so big this week. It's been a blast hanging out around LA and doing activities that I wouldn't normally go out of my way to do.
Amanda surprised us on Wednesday by springing a couple of rounds of "Combat" on us at practice. Combat is a game that Amanda seems to have made up as a secret wrestling training drill. Basically, you partner off and fight for possession of the ball without any of those pesky contact restrictions that soccer usually entails. You can push, pull and downright toss your opponent aside to gain control of the ball. I squared off with Belden, Rosie and Abby in a series of minute-long rounds. Each round ended with two girls on the ground, panting and laughing. I think it might have been a hint from Amanda that we need to be a little bit more physical on the ball. Message received!
Needless to say, practices this week were intense and fun as we prepared for the UNC game this Friday. Last year is still fresh in our minds, as I'm sure it is in theirs. We played UNC twice during the 2013 season, losing 1-0 during the regular season and winning 1-0 in double overtime in the Elite 8. UNC is a powerhouse women's soccer program, having won the most NCAA championships by far. The game is sure to be one for the books. We can't wait to see how we perform against such a talented team this early in the season and to be challenged by their unique high-press style of play. Make sure you come out to Drake Stadium tonight, Friday at 7pm for the matchup.
Sunday we face off against USD at 5pm at Drake in what is also certainly going to be some excellent competition. We have a huge weekend ahead of us before we head to Hawaii on Wednesday.
A special shout-out to Madison's mom, Dee Schmidt, for the "Positivity" bracelets! We are using them to keep ourselves optimistic and strong through everything that comes our way. The team is feeling confident and excited heading into the weekend, and we have been working hard this week to prepare. We hope to see you at the game tonight. Go Bruins!