Sykes and Sounds

Junior captain Kim Sykes leads the 2007 UC women's soccer team on and off the field. A Cincinnati native, Kim will keep Bearcats fans up to date on the UC soccer program throughout the 2007-08 season. Fans can email Kim here! Be sure to include your name and hometown.

March 10, 2008

Winter quarter is almost over...which means spring season is almost here. This is the last regular week of the quarter and next week is finals week which means everyone is busy with school these days, including myself. Besides taking journalism and English classes I am still interning at the Sports Communications Office and tutoring kiddies at Winton Place Academy.

Team training and lifting has stayed the same since I last wrote, although we have had some really good practices since then which is always good. We have even been able to go outside on days that it isn't raining, snowing or just really freezing to play on Gettler Stadium. Also, last Thursday we went to the men's basketball team's last home game as a team which nice to do as a team. We were the loudest fans and we even won a pizza because of it.

Here on campus, though, things really got crazy after the game Thursday night and into Friday morning when a blizzard came through and we were all stuck inside. Basically every time I looked out my apartment window this weekend it was snowing. Yesterday the snow finally began to melt and I was able to leave my room ...but it was nice having school cancelled and snowboarding with Smo outside.

Other news is that the lacrosse team has started their first season and my teammates and I have been going to the games... they are pretty exciting and I hope that anyone who reads this will go out and support them. It's time for conditioning so I'm off to the locker room...can't wait till we have our spring schedule up!!

#5 Kim

February 20, 2008

The month of February is always the time of the year when you are not quite in spring season yet, but you know your off-season work during this month will help determine how well you do in the spring, and then of course in the fall season. So, with the team keeping that in mind this week we have been continuing our lifting and our conditioning sessions with Curtis. We have also increased our practices as a team and it is nice to get to play as a team again. Even though if we are outside it can be freezing and windy, it really seems like every day we are focused and ready to work.

In case you didn't know, besides our new Head Coach Michelle Salmon being in place, we also have our assistant coach, Chris Kouns, on campus now. It is a pretty exciting time for UC soccer and I highly suggest people come to our spring games, whether or not you know our team...

On another note, there has been a lot of interest in what I had mentioned last blog about the Do it Now program. You can see how much UC has donated and how far we need to go, especially to beat all the other Ohio schools, by clicking here. If you can just take the time to sign up - just to be an organ donor - and even send it to a couple friends or family members you can literally save lives. Remember that even if you are not from Ohio, there is a place on the Web site for non-Ohians to sign up.

It is time for practice so come back soon to read about a shoe drive we are doing here at the UC Athletic Department. Really do come back soon because there will be information about a shoe drive the UC Athletic Department is going to take part in!

Go' Cats,
Kim Sykes #5

February 6, 2006

Right now on the UC women's soccer team we are having limited practices as a team (NCAA rules), lifting and conditioning. Winter can sometimes be hard to set up free-play because of how cold it is, but luckily we have been able to play around outside lately because some days it hasn't been that cold.

As far as lifting goes, my partner in the weight room is usually Kendall Loggins, aka bones. Winter quarter lifting and conditioning is a time where our team really bonds because at the beginning of the year, you barely know the freshman, at least when season first starts, and now everyone is really getting to know each other. One thing that is good about our team is that it doesn't matter what class you're in, we all treat each other with the same amount of respect. So while we have always been a tight team, now we are becoming even closer which I'm sure will benefit us in our spring games that are coming up.

Like I've said before, Kendall and I go way back because when I was a freshman she was a recruit of mine. It really is hard to believe that next I will be a senior. But anyway, in the weight room we have a bunch of fun together even though we take longer than anyone to get done. The other day while we were lifting, a football player asked me where my older sister was. I had no idea what he was talking about since she doesn't go to UC, and asked him who he thought my sister was. Finally, Kendall and I figured out that a bunch of players thought that me and her were sisters... pretty funny considering we don't look alike other than the fact we have blonde hair.

Other than soccer, this quarter I am interning and taking more journalism classes and some English classes for my minor. Gigi Ernst and Erica Maine were able to study abroad this quarter, with Erica going to Mexico and Gigi traveling to Chile. The other day I got to see her for a second when she stopped by while we had practice, and she said she had a great time. I can't wait to hear more about it! I also talked to Erica and she loves Mexico where she is taking a couple of classes and also volunteering. She is staying with a family there and then after she is done she is going to return to Colorado (her home) for a little bit and then come back to UC.

As far as some current players and what they are up to, Chelsea Kindschuh is busy participating in an Ohio competition, part of the Do It Now organ donation program, where she is helping the program reach the goal of having 19,000 people sign up as organ donors by May. She is also the vice president of CPAWs and of SAAC, so she is busy with those leadership positions as well.

Besides being excited to go with my teammates to some of the baseball games later in the year, it is also exciting because this year is the first year of women's lacrosse at UC. I am familiar with lacrosse because we had it at my high school and so I am excited to see the team play. Their first game is on February 23rd, at Gettler Stadium (the same place where our team plays), and it is scheduled to be at 2 p.m. against LeMoyne, a team that was conference champions last year in the MAAC.

Check back soon for some more updates about the women's program and also to see our spring schedule so you can come out and support us.

Go `Cats,
Kim Sykes #5

December 15, 2007

Today I worked the women's basketball game, an early game against Youngstown State. It didn't even feel like I was working since I was watching a basketball game.... After Maggie McKinley gave me a ride through the blizzard back to my apartment, I did some shopping for my family. I don't really think of it as last minute shopping because Christmas is still a week away, but I guess it is according to everyone I talk to. Besides what I have already gotten, I know my sister, mom and dad are going to be getting a lot of Bearcat apparel this year... I am guessing they won't read this before we unwrap presents.

Pretty soon it will be time for the bowl game. I will not be attending, but I know a lot of people who are going down on the busses and who are really pumped. I think it is exciting to see so many people supporting the best football team in Cincinnati.

So, on Monday I am working the women's basketball game against Central Michigan and I really think that everyone should come support the team. It's at home, at 7 p.m. so there really is no excuse why people shouldn't be there!!!

Check back in soon...

Happy Holidays, #5

December 13, 2007

Happy holidays everyone. I love this time of year because I love Christmas lights and just the overall feeling of the holidays. Right now all UC student-athletes are on winter break, done with our first quarter of the year, in case you didn't know. I know all my teammates are excited to get some time off from school and to hang out with family and friends at home. Fall quarter for me is always really busy because that is when I am in-season, and that is always the quarter where you usually have the least spare time as a student-athlete

We just had our end-of-the-season banquet during finals week which was a good way to end the quarter and say goodbye to everyone for the month that you don't see some people. Erica, Jamie (our manager), and I had to arrive late because we had finals, but we didn't really miss anything, we were just a little late for dinner.

When we had arrived at the banquet, a little ways from Becki's house, where it was at, I noticed that my gasoline light had gone on, signaling how I was near our of gas. I started to tell Erica (or Nancy, as she likes to be called these days), and Jamie that I was kind of worried that we were going to run out of gas. Of course, I was kidding and only trying to see if I could scare Erica, but unfortunately they didn't seem worried at all so I just forgot about it.

After dinner, we basically celebrate our season and hand out awards! As our Web site says, Kendall was named Rookie of the Year, Gigi got the player's award, JoJo got the coaches award and Dre was named MVP. Also, Erin MacDonald was an ALL-CONFERENCE PLAYER. So proud of the Canadian for that honor.

After the awards are given out, we all get to "roast" the seniors, which is basically our way of poking fun at them. But, I won't be sharing those with you, but definitely ask Erica why people call her the Hulk.

So, after everyone ate lots of cheesecake, we had to get back to studying. I tried running to my car to be a good teammate so that I could warm it up for Erica and Jamie. Instead, they thought I was running away from them and trying to leave them behind.

Either way, I got to my car ahead of them and warmed it up for awhile. But what I didn't remember was that I was really almost out of gas at this point, and just warming up my car for awhile wasn't really the best idea.

So finally we were on our way, and we were looking for gas stations that we could stop at. It just so happened that Becki does not live that close to any gas stations, so I really started to think that maybe this would be the fist time I ran out of gas. Even though I figured we had a ways to go, I wanted to scare Erica and told her I thought we were about to run out.

Finally, we saw a gas station and we pulled in. I was super happy because it was freezing outside and I didn't feel like pushing my car. But when we looked at all the gas pumps, none of them had the kind of gas we needed. So we got back on the road and kept driving.

Finally we got to another gas station and fueled up and all was good. But ... we were close to be stranded, and I could tell Erica was very, very scared in the backseat.

Anyway, that's it for this entry... But check back in soon to read more...

Kim Sykes, #5

October 24, 2007

Tomorrow (Thursday) we leave early in the morning for our last two regular-season games of the year against Georgetown and Villanova. We are hoping to win them both in order to secure a spot in the Big East Tournament. Our team has been doing really well lately and I think we are going into this weekend confidently and as tight as ever. While sometimes teams are getting tired at this point in the season, this isn't the case with us... we are more hungry than we have been all season.

We are leaving early in the morning because we are FLYING which should be pretty fun. Past flights have been pretty crazy with this team! I remember last year I blogged about how someone thought we were the cheerleading team.

It has been really rainy in the `Nati for that couple of days so we are excited to go on the road this weekend. It took about half an hour for us to get all the gear we are taking with us after practice today...we have more than 4 warm-up outfits, a scarf haha, gloves, sweatpants, and tons and tons of other UC gear.

Well, I have to go do some homework that is still due tomorrow, even though I am missing class.

Go Cats,



Name: Jessica "Gigi" Ernst
Nicknames: Gigi, GigiBear
Class: Senior
Hometown: Plain City
Major: Accounting, Finance
Position: Defense
Age you started playing soccer: 3
Favorite food: Any kind of Potato (i.e. Mashed, Baked, etc.) except Sweet Potatoes
Favorite soccer player: David Beckham
Favorite athlete: Michael Jordan
Favorite movie: Disney's The Little Mermaid, and Robin Hood
Favorite artist: Di Vinci
Pre-game ritual(s): Black Tape on Left wrist, Listening to "We didn't start the Fire," putting on my shin-guards with pre-wrap, putting on my right shoe before my left, chest bump with Dre, and Neiser, Defensive huddle, spitting with Kim before the kickoff, Braiding my ponytail, tape on ring finger.
Best pump-up song: "We didn't start the fire"
Favorite TV shows: Family Guy, House
Favorite quote: "Do or Do Not, there is no try."
If you could have a meal with any three people, who would it be: Dead: My great-grandpa, Jane Austen, Thomas Moore. Alive: My Grandparents, my boyfriend, J.K. Rowling

Of your teammates and coaches, who is the...
Loudest: Heather Neiser
Funniest: Kristen May
Most unpredictable: Britney Hanson
Most athletic: Kim Sykes
Most likely to go pro: Chelsea Kindschuh
Biggest prankster: Chelsea Kindschuh, Heather Neier, Kristen May
Best dressed: Erin MacDonald, Tricia Gardner
Most shy: Lisa Clark, Kendall Loggins
Most gullible: Melissa Bigg
Smartest: Kim Sykes
Most likely to be on their cell phone: JoJo, Erica Maine
Best Koala: Andrea Kaminski

October 22, 2007

Today there is a guest blog from Ellen Parker about the weekend...

Hello. I am Ellen Parker, one of the freshmen on the team this year. I wanted to share with everyone how the weekend went. It was a very exciting weekend! We beat South Florida on Friday night 3-0 and then held Marquette to a tie yesterday (Sunday) afternoon. It was a great weekend to honor our seniors!

Senior night was on Friday so before our game we recognized their many accomplishments and gave them flowers and all signed a poster for them. They looked so happy and I felt proud to be their teammate. I am really going to miss our seniors. I look up to them a lot and they each have taught me something over this season. And winning was a great way to top off the night!

This weekend was also exciting because our new teammates, the freshmen for next year, were here for their official visits. They were all so sweet and it was great to get to know them a little better before playing with them next year. I am from Louisville and one of the girls that will be here next year played on the same club team that I played for. Her parents were here as well so it was awesome to show her around and see some familiar faces.

Overall, this weekend was a great weekend and I look forward to this new week ahead of us and our chance to make a new Big East record!



Name: Chelsea Kindschuh
Nicknames: none!
Class: Junior
Hometown: West Chester, OH
Major: Marketing and Finance
Position: Midfield
Age you started playing soccer: 7
Favorite food: Chocolate Chip Cookies...duh, boneless buffalo wings, bread, smoothies
Favorite soccer player: Cristiano Ronaldo, Ronaldinho
Favorite athlete: don't have one!
Favorite movie: Eurotrip
Favorite artist: Van Gogh ... j/k I know you meant MUSIC artist and I don't have one!
Pre-game ritual(s): listening to the ipod, taping boomers wrists (left one, then right one), and my sweet handshake with JoJo right before kick off
Best pump-up song: Any rap song
Favorite TV shows: THE OC with Smo (even though its gone), Newport Harbor, Bachelor with Bo and Boomer, THE AMAZING RACE (someday I'll be on it ;) ), Friends
Greatest influence on you athletically: My dad
Favorite quote: "Risk more than others think is safe, Care more than others think is wise, Dream more than others think is practical, Expect more than others think is possible."
If you could have a meal with any three people, who would it be: Will Ferell, AG Lafley, Greg Sheen

Of your teammates and coaches, who is the...

Loudest: Neiser
Funniest: EMac
Most unpredictable: Biggie
Most athletic: Kristin
Biggest prankster: Brit/Boomer
Best dressed: Steph Brindle
Most shy: Lisa
Most gullible: Emily
Smartest: Gigi bear
Most likely to be on their cell phone: Nicole
Most likely to keep me from doing my homework: JoJo!
Most likely to hear her laugh from a mile away: Bo

October 16, 2007

Tuesdays are busy days....Today we had an early lift, and then I went to volunteer. I had to run to class because of traffic on the way back which almost made me late for my class. But I did actually make it on time. I walked in and we had a current events quiz. It was funny because one of the questions on the test was what UC team won this weekend against Rutgers I know I got that question right.

After that I was walking back to my apartment before practice and I saw a former women's soccer player who I played with in the back line and who I am good friends with, Rachel Epps. She happened to have a huge diamond ring on her finger and I found out she is engaged. So excited for her!!!!

This weekend is a very important weekend for the team in order to reach our goal of making it to West Virginia for the Big East tournament in November. We have our two last home games this weekend, and on Friday we are celebrating our seniors, Gigi "Bear" Ernst and Erica "the hulk" Maine.

Since they are two of my best friends on the team, I am sad to see them go. Not only will I miss them as far as our friendship goes, they will be greatly missed on the field, as anyone could tell you. They are two leaders that I have learned a lot from and everyone on the team looks up to. But at the same time I know they are going to do something great after college and I know they are looking forward to the future.

Gigi is going to law school and I know she will be a successful attorney. Erica on the other hand is going to one day work for the FBI or the DEA which I can definitely see her doing.

Even if you don't know the seniors, you should still come out and support the game because we are playing USF and it is a huge game for us.

I have to head to practice, but read on to get to know my teammate who is in the college of DAAP, Lisa Clark.


Name: Lisa
Class: Sophomore
Hometown: Alexandria, VA
Major: Architecture
Position: Midfield
Age you started playing soccer: 5
Favorite food: Cereal
Favorite soccer player: Claude Makalele
Favorite movie: O Brother Where Art Thou
Pre-game ritual(s): juggling, passing with Smo
Best pump-up song: Final Countdown
Favorite TV shows: Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, Ugly Betty, Project Runway
Greatest influence on you athletically: My old coach, Pedro

Of your teammates and coaches, who is the...

Loudest: Neiser
Funniest: Chelsea
Most unpredictable: Meridy
Most athletic: Erica
Most likely to go pro: Dre
Biggest prankster: Brittany
Best dressed: Erin
Most shy: Shaunna
Most gullible: Mel
Smartest: Gigi
Most likely to be on their cell phone: Neiser

Oct. 14, 2007
Today we had our second Big East win against Rutgers....we scored with very little time left in the game which was pretty sweet.

Even though I'm sure a lot of the Rally Cats fans were really... tired... from last night's homecoming game, we still had a bunch of them at our game which was awesome. Our first goal of the game was by Kendall Loggins, a froshy who was named Big East Rookie of the Week last week. She was actually my recruit two years ago when I was a freshman.

Anyway, Kristin May, who we call KMay, scored the second goal which gave us the win. I'm pretty sure our keeper, Dre, had an assist on the play, which is really funny. Another slightly funny thing that happened this weekend was a bump the size of a tennis ball on Heather Neiser's leg. It came from someone who accidentally whacked her leg in one of our games.

It has been a busy weekend with all the former soccer players coming into town on Friday, as well as all the homecoming festivities, so I am going to do some h-dub and go to sleep.

In honor of Neiser's growth on her leg..........


Name: Heather Neiser
Nicknames: Neiser
Class: Sophomore
Hometown: Batavia, OH (B-Town baby)
Major: Nursing
Position: Defense/ Back Line
Age you started playing soccer: 4
Favorite food: MASHED POTATOES and chicken
Favorite soccer player: Heather Mitts
Favorite athlete: Chad Johnson
Favorite movie: Madagascar/ The Holiday
Favorite artist: Young Jeezy/ Breaking Benjamin
Pre-game ritual(s): The game bun- the bun I have in my hair MUST be perfect and stiffened with hairspray- also I have to pretend to kick Gigi in warm up and boogie down with Kim- and of course chest bump Ken Stuff [manager] and Gigi
Best pump-up song: Lil Boosie- Set It Off
Favorite TV shows: Family Guy, Grey's Anatomy, South Park
Greatest influence on you athletically: My parents and my off -season trainer/coach Wil
Favorite quote: It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but it's the size of the fight in the dog
If you could have a meal with any three people, who would it be: Chad Johnson, Heather Mitts, and Cartman from South Park

Of your teammates and coaches, who is the...

Loudest: Kristin May
Funniest: Kim Sykes
Most unpredictable: Erin MacDonald
Most athletic: Kim Sykes
Most likely to go pro: Andrea Kaminski
Biggest prankster: Brittany Hansen
Best dressed: Nicole Sanda
Most shy: Lisa Clark
Most gullible: Melissa Bigg
Smartest: Gigi
Most likely to be on their cell phone: JoJo
Most afraid of balloons: Melissa Bigg

October 3, 2007

It is hard to believe the season is already half-over. But what this means is that even if you haven't seen a game, you still have time to. So far, the crowds and overall support at our games have been unbelievable, and hopefully that continues throughout the second half of the season.

Today was a normal Wednesday for me. I had three classes and then we had a practice in the afternoon. After practice, we grabbed our bags full of all our gear because tomorrow morning we are leaving for Pittsburgh. We have only played Pittsburgh in the springtime since I have been here, so we are pumped to play them on Friday. On Sunday, we also have an away game at West Virginia.

So far I have had some pretty fun roommates on our away trips. The first away trip was at Michigan, and by chance, Heather Neiser and I were put together.

Because the UC football team was playing, we went to our room and put the game on TV At the time I had the remote control in my hand, because I figured I would need to control the volume of the TV since I had no way of knowing when Neiser would use her extremely loud voice and I wouldn't be able to hear.

After I turned on the TV, it showed a guy interviewing both T.J. Houshmandzadeh and Chad Johnson, who were at the game. Seeing that our two favorite Bengals players were on the screen at once, Heather and I started to scream and I attempted to turn up the volume. But just as this was happening, the back of the TV made a strange noise, and then the TV proceeded to explode.

Heather began to run around the room yelling something, I am not sure what she was exactly saying, but it was funny. I think she was yelling that there was a fire and that she was mad she couldn't see Chad Johnson anymore.

As the smoke filled the room -- haha not really -- but as the smoke started become more intense, I called the front desk and told them that we could not see T.J. or Chad on TV due to an explosion that had occurred near the back of the TV The man was not amused.

In the end, we got a new room and obviously a new TV with it. Also, it should be noted that Stefanie Workman is good at putting out fires. (It was not actually a fire.) Other roomies I've had so far include Camille Royer, Melissa Bigg, Jenn Johannigman, Brittney Hansen, and Kalli Goldberg.

Who knows who will be my next roommate.........


Name: Kristin May
Nicknames: K.May
Class: Junior
Hometown: Hudson, Ohio
Major: Accounting/Spanish
Position: Forward/Outside Mid
Age you started playing soccer: 5
Favorite food: Macaroni and Cheese
Favorite soccer player: Christiano Ronaldo
Favorite athlete: Carlos Boozer
Favorite movie: Anchorman
Favorite artist: The Fray
Pre-game ritual(s): The "ooooo oooo oooooUC" cheer
Best pump-up song: Till I collapse - Eminem
Favorite TV shows: The Hills, One Tree Hill
Greatest influence on you athletically: my high school soccer coach
Favorite quote: "Good leaders are scarce, so I follow myself"
If you could have a meal with any three people, who would it be: Carlos Boozer, The President, JJ Reddick

Of your teammates and coaches, who is...

Loudest: Neiser
Funniest: Brittney
Most unpredictable: Brittney
Most athletic: Brindle
Most likely to go pro: Dre
Biggest prankster: Boomer
Best dressed: Meridy
Most shy: Kendall
Most gullible: Nicole
Best friends: Brindle, Emac
Smartest: Gigi
Most likely to be on their cell phone: JoJo