Austin College Women's Soccer Team in the U.K.!

By: KXII Staff
By: KXII Staff

The Austin College Women's Soccer Team just wrapped up the road trip of their lives. You see, the team's head coach, Paul Burns, is from the United Kingdom, and he brought his team for this year's trip back home. The final entry comes from Helen Heres...

guinessThe group returned to London on Thurday morning and parted ways as half of the group was returning home and the other eight were going to Dublin for the weekend.  The Dublin group had a flight to catch from Heathrow on Thursday afternoon.  We arrived in Dublin in the evening and took a bus from the airport to our hostel, Paddy's Palace.  We got all of our luggage settled and decided to go out to get a bite to eat and explore the streets of Dublin!  We went to a great pizza place and then walked around Temple Bar, the well known area for night life.  We were all pretty exhausted and decided to call it a night after our walk.  On Friday morning, we got up and got started with our sightseeing.  We went to the Guinness Brewery which was incredible.  At the end of the tour, everyone got a free pint, so that was pretty cool too.  Next, we went to see St. Patrick's Cathedral which was absolutely beautiful.  The architecture and art were incredible and the history is unbelievable.  After the Cathedral, we walked by Dublin Castle and saw a few other various sites. 

In the evening, we went on a Pub Crawl, which is a tour of pubs led by a student at the famous Trinity University in Dublin.  We met a lot of other people our age and got a taste of the city from an insider's perspective.  

Friday morning, we got up and made our way to the Jameson Whisky Distillery.  It is a very famous distillery as it has so much history.  Three of us were even chosen to be official whisky tasters at the end of the tour!  Dublin was a great experience and we ended the weekend by spending the night in the Dublin airport so that we would not miss our early morning flight!  We returned to London and spent the day doing some last minute sightseeing.  Some people went to see the Chelsea Stadium, the London Tower, and Wimbledon.  We flew back to the states on Monday afternoon.  Overall, it was an amazing trip and we appreciate all of the support we had from our families and friends.  Without the generosity of others, this trip would not have been possible! 



-Helen Heres 

This entry comes from Bahar Abbassi...

Wednesday, August 6th

After ending our tour of soccer games last night, half the team decided to take advantage of being able to sleep into the morning and half the team set off to an early morning adventure into the city of Cardiff . Taking the train led us straight in the middle of the city, and after a bit of light shopping, we viewed the
Cardiff  Castle . Some of the girls decided to tour the inside of the castle while the others continued to shop at the stores nearby. Everyone met back up for lunch and then headed to tour the Millennium Stadium, which to our disappointment was not open for touring at the time. We then walked to the Brains Brewery to get a taste of the official  Cardiff rugby teams sponsor beer. However, that too was closed! It seemed the odds were against us in  Cardiff . However, we were all so tired and exhausted from the long day that we didnt mind hopping back on the train and heading back to Abergavenny. The other half of the team stayed back in Abergavenny and enjoyed a nice day of shopping and exploring in the city. We all met back up in the afternoon and rested before heading out to town at nighttime for a few drinks at a local pub, The Coliseum. has definitely been exciting and were all sad to be departing so soon.

Bahar Abbassi

This entry is from Kailyn Sperry....

Tuesday, August 5

After spending our first night in an air-conditioned youth hostel in our newest city Abergavenny, we woke up to find it was raining again because it never rains in Wales, right?  We ate breakfast and walked in the rain to the local fields in town for a light training session.  Since today was game day we all decided to have lunch together in a quaint café located further into town before our drive to Cardiff.  The day before we traveled from Peterborough to Abergavenny which was a 3-4 hour drive so the hour drive to Cardiff was no big deal.  Besides, we were ready to dominate, devastate, and destroy the Cardiff Ladies FC, despite the heavy rain that had been falling all day.  Paul worried that the Cardiff ladies would cancel the game on account of the rain ruining their field, which meant we might have to play tomorrow!  We were all pumped up for our last game in England so the thought of not playing was horrible!  Besides, we already had played a game in the rain.  To our relief we found out that the game was still on.  We had a couple of hours before the game so we explored Cardiff.  Some of us went to Cardiff Castle while others went shopping.  In a couple of hours it was game time.  As we walked onto the field we noticed our opponents who were as usual, larger than us so we expected a pretty physical game.  Our expectations were correct as we found out these Welsh ladies like to play physical and didn’t seem to be as friendly as the other teams we had played.  Unfortunately they scored the first goal of the game in the first 30 minutes, but we soon got our own goal when Helen scored a beautiful goal right over the keeper’s finger tips from a free kick.  The game became a little more aggressive because both teams wanted to get the lead.  Finally in the 3rd 30 minutes Helen scored again to secure our lead and helping us to win the game.  We rode back to Abergavenny rocking out to Queen’s “We are the Champions”.  We finished our English tour with a record of 3-0, which is just what we were hoping for.  Success!

-Caitlin Sperry





This blog entry comes from Ashleigh Johnson...

Monday, August 4th


Greetings from Wales! We all got the chance to get up early today and say farewell to our lovely hotel rooms in Peterborough. They will be missed. It has now become quite a challenge to fit all our bags and bodies into a couple 16-passenger vans, with the fire exits intact of course. After a good 3-4 hour drive and a quick pit stop for lunch, we arrived at our hostel in Wales. I’m sure everyone would agree that it is very beautiful here. We are surrounded by hills, small towns, and Welsh words that have about eight consonants in a row. The rooms are just doubles, and they are pretty cozy. The stench created from two bodies and all their soccer belongings in such a tight space is not one to be desired. A few of us might capture the scent in a bottle to sell as a gag gift. Let me know if there are any takers. Supplies limited. All in all it was a rather relaxed day, with some light training at a local park. The views around were amazing. After that most people just hung out and ate dinner at a local restaurant. This was followed by the whole group relaxing in the hostel where laughs and good times were had by all. It wasn’t a very late night, because we had a game and practice the next day. Cheers!


Ashleigh Johnson

This blog entry comes from Holly Messamore.

Sunday, August 3rd


AC Soccer TeamHey ya’ll.  Today we enjoyed a nice breakfast at the hotel around 10.  We met at 12:30 to get ready for our game against the Peterborough Ladies.  We kicked off at the Peterborough pitch at 2 o’clock.  Our first goal came of a header by Ashleigh Johnson.  She was assisted by Helen Heres from a corner kick.  Our second goal was a rocket from outside the box also by Helen.  They then scored a lucky goal before the half.  Our third and final goal came from MacKenzie Lund off of an excellent defensive move and precise placement to the far left corner.  Although Peterborough scored one more goal, they were unable to catch us and we left with a 3-2 victory!  After the game we had pizza and showered.  A few people hung in the hotel and chatted for a bit and a few went into town to the College Arms, a local pub.  Most everyone went to bed fairly early considering the impending 4 hour drive to Wales the following morning.  All together it was another amazing day in England!  Cheerio!


-Holly Messamore

This entry comes to us from Kaitlin Elledge...

teamSaturday, August 2


This morning we woke up and ate breakfast at the hotel before boarding a train to King’s Cross in

London .  We arrived about an hour later and found our way to the Underground where we boarded the Tube that took us to the London Eye, a huge ferris wheel that gives a terrific view of the city.  We then went to see Big Ben and Westminster Abbey which are both right across the

Thames from the Eye.  Big Ben was absolutely incredible.  Even though I had seen many pictures of it before, it was amazing to see first-hand.  On our way to Buckingham Palace, we heard some music and thought it might be something important, so we found the source, the Palace Guard Band.  They invited us to play with them so a few people joined in.  After our teammates wonderful performance, we thanked the Band and continued on to the Palace, which is magnificent.  Although we wanted to harass the Palace guards like so many other tourists, it began to rain and finding food in a dry location became a priority, so we walked to Trafalgar Square to grab a quick bite to eat.  Afterward, we walked through Piccadilly Circus, basically just to say we had been there.  We then boarded the Tube that took us to Harrods where a few people did some shopping and the group decided to split up.  Most people wanted to return to Peterborough, but five of us wanted to stay in London and see a few more things.  After a cup of coffee and some ice cream, the five of us went to Stamford Bridge, the home stadium of the Chelsea Football Club.  The stadium was huge and really nice.  We took some pictures and went in the store that was two stories of anything and everything a Chelsea fan could ever want.  They even had a toaster that put the initials CFC on toast!  Wow.  We bought a few souvenirs and made our way all the way back across town via the Underground to the Tower of London and the Tower Bridge.  Unfortunately, we missed the last tour by five minutes…oh well.  The outside was still pretty cool and we got some great pictures of the Tower Bridge.  We found a pub where we sat and ate dinner.  Because we had seen just about everything, we decided to head back to Peterborough to take a nice hot shower and get some rest.  On the way back, our train departed from Platform 9 at King’s Cross, and much to our delight, we found that there is a Platform 9 ¾ (from the Harry Potter Books) where we took some great pictures.  We’re looking forward to the next game and we’re going to do our best to get another win!  


Kaitlin Elledge

Friday August 1, 2008

pubSo today ended up being a great start to our first weekend in England.  It started with a very very very early drive (8:30 a.m… it was before 10 so we considered it early) from York to Peterborough, which is where we are going to stay until Monday morning.  Arriving at

Peterborough was very exciting, because we found out we are staying at a hotel!  After we got settled in we took a trip to the mall for a walk around and some lunch.  Then it was off to a short practice at a local park.  Practice was short and pretty light, but we were all still pretty tired from the busy week and game the night before.  Once practice finished, it was off to the town!  We split up for dinner… half went to a Chinese restaurant and some to a local pub.  All that went to the Chinese restaurant helped Paul’s family celebrate his wife’s, Holly, birthday.  After dinner the whole team met at the “hot” pub in town and enjoyed a few drinks with the locals after dinner. 


Thursday, July 31st



Howdy from England!  Today we had our first game….and our first win!  We got up this morning and had breakfast at the hostel before having a light training session in the morning.  We came back and had lunch and some of us took naps to get rested up for the game!  At 4, we took a tour of Kit Kat Crescent, the York City soccer team’s stadium.  It was very interesting to see their facilities in comparison to ours (and to see how good we have it!).  Apparently they take group baths after games, which is definitely a bit different from what we’re used to.  After the tour we got ready for our game and went to the fields at York College, the same fields we’ve been practicing on.  The game was at 7 and we won 3-2.  Paige scored the first goal, Faren scored the second, and Mackenzie scored the third.  They were all really good goals and we had a great time despite the muggy/rainy weather. 

After the game we went to a social with the opponents, the York City Ladies.  We went to a local pub and had a few drinks with them and they had chips (fries) for us to eat.  Overall, it was a great day and we’re having a great time in England!



Here's the Day Two entry from Faren Frazier...

teamHi! My name is Faren Frazier and Im a senior on the Austin College Womens soccer team. We had another fun filled day in  York, !  We started off with a training session at  York
College . The campus isnt very big, but it is very modern compared to most of what weve seen in downtown. Later in the afternoon, we took a tour of downtown York (where weve be spending the majority of our free time).  It is just so amazing how much history and how many artifacts the city has.  The tour guide pointed out various relics from when the Romans inhabited

York in like the 14th Century (or was it the 13th Century)! I think the oldest thing weve got in
Texas thats still standing is the Alamo .  After the tour, a couple of the girls cooked a huge pasta dinner for the team here at the Youth Hostel. MMmmmh! We finished off the night by going to watch the York City Football Club play and they won!!! There were a group of fans singing their teams songs just like they do when you watch Chelsea or Manchester United play, so that was pretty neat. Then, there was almost a fight between two players on the field a couple of times. All in all, it was very exciting!  That wrapped up the night for us. We play the York City Ladies tomorrow, and were really looking forward to it! Wish us luck!

Here's the Day One blog entry from Brooke Adams....

Team 1Hey guys, first of all, we are having a GREAT time here!!

York is amazing.   To start things off we flew from DFW to Chicago and Chicago to Manchester .  Half of the team was able to sleep, while the other half was cursed with insomnia. We arrived at 7:30am and Paul and his brother Sean picked us up in two vans to drive us two hours to York

Once we got to 
York we unloaded our stuff and then walked around town for a while. We grabbed a bite to eat and then got ready for a light practice. After our very, very jet lagged practiced we headed out back on the town for dinner and some free time. A couple of us went on a ghost tour!!

York is one of the most haunted towns in so there were plenty of ghost stories to go around.  We got the see all the places that the ghosts show up too. Which is even more creepy when we pass by those places every time.  We even got the see The Shambles, which was the inspiration for Harry Potter's Diagon Ally. So all you Harry Potter fans need to check this place out as soon as you can.

After flying, driving, walking, practicing, and even more walking for a day, we were all too tired to carry on. We all went to bed no later than
10pm. I think some of us still might be jet lagged.

You guys, this place is so awesome. I think everyone is trying to pick up on the accent :)

day one=FUN TIMES!!

Team 2





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