Until last week, I had never seen a hockey game, ever. Growing up in Austin, Texas, and attending Westlake High, traditionally a powerhouse 5A football team (Drew Brees played for Westlake and Friday Night Lights was filmed at our stadium), I had the mindset that football was life. When it wasn’t football season, we would watch baseball. But no other sports really existed. I had heard rumors of a sport called “hockey”—some sort of mix between lacrosse, soccer and basketball, played on ice. Crazy, right? (The only “ice” we have in Austin comes in eight-pound bags from the 7-11.) When my midwestern friends at USC heard that I had never been to a hockey game, they were astounded. And so this past Friday they insisted on taking me to my very first hockey game: USC vs. Cal State Fullerton in Anaheim.
I know, it’s shocking that USC, the ultimate LA school, in the land of palm trees and beaches, even has a hockey team. It’s a club sport, not an “official” USC sport, but it illustrates one of the great things about USC: there is a club for everyone and everything. There are tons of competitive clubs, from softball to chess, street dancing and jui jitsu. Many of them, like hockey, play a full schedule just like regular sports. The hockey team attracts a fair number of fans and even has its own cheerleaders, the Ice Girls. I was amazed at the fast pace of the game and at how much coordination and balance it takes to skate and still keep track of the puck. As it turned out, I actually knew two people on the team so it was great to come out and support them. Although USC got slaughtered, I still had a great time.
This semester I am hoping to extend my USC sports knowledge by attending a sand volleyball game and maybe even a field hockey match. There is never such a thing as too much school spirit.
For more information on USC Club Sports, visit http://sait.usc.edu/recsports/sports/club-sports/clubs-list