Marisa Abegg Journal From U.S. U20 Women's National Team Training Camp in Portland
After finishing a training camp at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., on March 26, the break will be short for the U.S. Under-20 Women's National Team as preparations for the 2006 FIFA Under-20 Women's World Championship continue with a training camp in Portland, Ore., from April 1-8. Here, Marisa Abegg shares her experiences from Portland!Hi from the 'City of Roses'--Portland, Oregon!
Camp began April 1st. Our first game was Saturday afternoon at the Nike Campus against Washington State University, which we actually won 3-0 despite the fact that we had three or four girls walk onto the field without having touched a ball for warm-up because of flight delays into Portland. The Washington game on Sunday afternoon was a bit more of a challenge for us, but we finished the game winning 4-3. Following the game, we all headed back to the hotel for some food and basically just hung around for the evening watching movies and recovering from the past two days.
On Monday morning we all headed out to the Nike World Headquarters again to train for a little bit. When we got back, we all had lunch and then made plans for the rest of the day. Some girls went to the mall just a few blocks away, some stayed and watched movies, but Kelley O'Hara, Sarah Kate Noftsinger and I decided to explore the city! We took the Max train across the river into downtown and then walked to a bike shop about 10 blocks away, where we rented bikes and rode up to the rose gardens. Unfortunately, I forgot that roses aren't in bloom yet so all we really saw in the garden were rose stems, but it was still quite the adventure and we were able to see some breathtaking views from atop the hill overlooking the city. When we returned to the hotel, we had dinner and a quick meeting regarding our upcoming game against our next opponent, the University of Portland Pilots--the reigning NCAA Women's Soccer Champs. Tuesday at 5:00 pm the whistle blew and the game began at Merlo Field. The game remained scoreless for the first half and with only a few minutes left in the second half, we were finally able to put away a goal and leave the Pilots empty-handed.
Following that busy day, we had a relaxing day with a short morning practice at the Nike Headquarters, and then hotel time watching movies and finishing up any homework that we decided to do, or at least attempted to do! After dinner, we walked a few blocks down to the Rose Garden Arena to watch the Portland Trailblazers beat the Houston Rockets... yeah Portland!
Thursday, we had our fourth game, versus Oregon State University, who we beat 4-1. Following the game, everyone was pretty tired so we headed to the hotel, had some dinner, (watched the OC), and then went to sleep.
Today, Friday, our last day off during the trip, we had a short practice and then prepared to see Multnomah Falls. The drive up was gorgeous and although it was a bit windy atop the mountains, it was a bunch of fun! Being the explorers we are, we climbed to the top of a few of the waterfalls, dodging falling boulders (ok...they were more like pebbles) and sliding on the moss covered ground, and we also were able to walk behind the falls, where the mist from the water spraying off the rocks drenched everyone, but it was awesome! Then, as if that was not enough, we came back to Portland and took a tour of the 10th scariest place in the US--a place in downtown Portland called the Shanghai tunnels. Supposedly the place is haunted like crazy, but I think the scariest part was everyone scaring each other with screams in the dark tunnels underground.
Anyways, tomorrow we are headed downtown one last time for the Saturday Market and our last game is versus Ohio State in the evening. Then it is back to The Farm! Talk to you all soon!