Just For Kicks
THE term "soccer mom" takes on a slightly different meaning for Sandy Chang.
HPUs soccer mom
has hands full
No doubt when her 3-year-old son Payton Jr. is ready, Chang will be taking him to practice and games.
Now, however, many of her Hawaii Pacific teammates call her "mom" and want to know if the old-time music played during Sea Warrior warmups brings back memories.
Chang graduated from Castle High School in 1989. She spent two years in the physical therapist assistant program at Kapiolani Community College, then went to work at Orthopedic Rehabilitation Specialists.
Marriage and her son's birth followed plus two ACL reconstructions on her left knee.
Mark Kane, HPU's head women's coach and Chang's youth coach, asked her occasionally to consider playing.
Eventually, changes in the health insurance industry convinced her more schooling was necessary. With support from her husband, help from her mother-in-law who watches P.J., and an understanding boss at work, Chang decided to take Kane up on his offer.
The process of getting back into shape began three months after giving birth.
"Originally, I told Coach Kane two years and that's it," Chang said. "I had nine months to get ready and it was a good thing. I got into shape faster."
Time management became all-important for the senior midfielder, who is in her third season with the Sea Warriors.
During the season she's up at 6:15 a.m., drops P.J. off at 7 on work days (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) and at 8 on school days (Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday).
Work is from 8 to 3 in Honolulu, then it's over the Pali for practice from 4 to 7 at HPU's Windward Campus. She also makes the round trip for school, attending class from 9 to 2 weekdays and for three hours Saturday morning.
Any free time found in this schedule is devoted to studying.
"Going back to school was hard, but it was good because it kept me busy," said the 28-year-old, who will graduate in January with a degree in human services.
"It's been hard and stressful, but I wouldn't change it. Not too many people are given the opportunity to be a kid again. That's a treat in itself," Chang said. "Luckily soccer is only three months of the year. The rest of the time I get to spend more time with my family.
"I would love for there to be more soccer someday, but I also would love to have another child soon."
Soccer mom will be heard around the Chang household for some time to come.
Alicia Vegas joined an elite group of college soccer players yesterday when she scored her 100th career goal for Simpson College (Indianola, Iowa), a Division III school.
Vegas, a 5-foot-6 senior striker from Waimea, Kauai, is the 10th NCAA player in all divisions to score 100 career goals. Just for good measure, she notched No. 101 in the Storm's 3-0 win over William Penn.
The all-time record of 122 goals is held by Paulina Miettinen, who played for Franklin Pierce, a Division II school.
The Division I record of 188 goals is held by Danielle Fotopoulas, a 1999 United States World Cup team member, who played college ball at Southern Methodist and Florida.
Vegas scored 21 goals as a freshman, 33 as a sophomore, 32 as a junior and has 15 this season.
She has nine more regular-season matches plus conference playoffs to break the Division III record of 110 goals scored by Beth Barn of Franklin & Marshall.