Farewell 2013… Hello 2014!

The Loyola women’s basketball team adopted a familyImage during the Christmas season. The team went shopping together and the girls picked out clothes and toys for the four children. After wrapping the gifts, the team traveled to the home of the family to deliver the gifts and wish them a Merry Christmas. The children were excited to see and talk with the team and the family was very grateful. Everyone agreed that it was an amazing experience.Image

On December 21 Loyola beat local rival UMBC, 56-49. The Greyhounds fought back from a 15-point deficit to get the win before leaving for the holiday. After a nice break at home, the team is back on campus and back at it.

As a team that has struggled with many obstacles this season, we have found that having each other and trusting in the team is extremely important. We are more than a team, but a family. Being part of the family means that we are part of something wonderful and so our team motto for the New Year is “Family First.”

We are looking forward to a strong start in 2014, beginning January 2 when we play in our first Patriot League game against Navy.

Check out more photos from our Christmas experience!ImageImage

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2013 Late Night With The Hounds

Take a look back from all the excitement at Late Night with the Hounds!

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Life After Loyola

ImageHello to all the Greyhound blog followers!

To kick things off, I’d like to talk about my transition. To put it simply, despite my excitement and love for the game, it was not an easy one. I have been a homebody for the majority of my life. Loyola is close to my hometown, and became one of the reasons I chose to become a Greyhound. Making the transition to move halfway across the world was difficult. Leaving my family at airport security, knowing I wouldn’t see them for many months made getting on the plane much harder, but I love basketball and knew I had to seize my opportunity to play professionally.

ImageI ended up getting a sinus infection, making my first week in Germany a little more hectic. I fought through the cold and homesickness to power through my first week.

My teammates and fans have all been very welcoming and have helped me through the language barrier. I have gotten used to it now after living here for almost two months, but the first few weeks had my head spinning. My first trip to the grocery store was somewhat overwhelming. Everything was written in German and when I asked for help I felt like an actor. I was acting out all my questions to the grocery store employees. Talk about embarrassing! I’ve finally gotten into a routine, and things are much easier now.Image

Having fellow American teammates made the transition much easier. We all get along really well, and it’s nice to have someone to talk to who is going through the same excitement and challenges as myself.

At the beginning of the season we didn’t get much down time to travel, but as soon as we had a weekend free I took complete advantage of it! My teammates and I took a road trip to Koln, Brussels and Amsterdam. It was so much fun! I would definitely recommend getting an authentic Belgian waffle from Brussels.

Living in Germany opens a lot of opportunities for me to travel and experience different parts of the world that I never thought were possible. I’m very grateful for my opportunity and future here. It’s a privilege to continue to play the sport I love, while creating opportunities to get out of my comfort zone and explore the world.  I know this opportunity would not have been possible without the support from my family, friends and Loyola family. All the support has prepared me and gotten me to where I am today. I’m very thankful to everyone.

My team, the Giro Live Panthers are currently 3-1. We play a game every weekend, and each game is broadcast live on dbbl.de. Check us out!

Image                                                                                                            Katie Sheahin                                                                                 Loyola Women’s Basketball ‘13

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Left, Right, Left, Write…

Post by freshman guard Lisa Mirarchi

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Last week the team had the opportunity to participate in a fun outdoor team-bonding activity. We traveled to a local ROTC reservation where we worked together through a string of challenging tasks. For every task, the team began by evaluating the scene, then planning, discussing and finally taking action. A different team member would take the main leadership role for each mission. We were challenged, but it was very beneficial and an overall great learning experience!

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This week we also finished our fitness tests. The mile was not easy, and the team did a great job working together to get all members to pass. Teammates ran with other players, pushing their fellow teammates and giving them constant boosts of encouragement. When every player crossed the finished line, it was a proud moment not only for the runners but the coaches as well. Way to go everyone!

In the classroom, everyone has been busy studying for midterms. After they are finished taking exams, there is a long weekend for fall break. The team is looking forward to a few relaxing days off!

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Welcome To The 2013-14 Season!

Post by freshman guard Lisa Mirarchi:

Tons of excitement for the start of the new school year! It has been almost a month since Loyola University Maryland students reported back to campus, and it has been busy. After being on a quiet campus during the summer session, it has been refreshing to see new faces.

Everyone on the team has been working extremely hard the past few weeks in preparation for the official start of the season. Players had a variety of workouts including position work, concept work, individuals, conditioning, and lifting. In addition, fitness and strength tests have just finished up. We ended last week on a good note with the dreaded hill run. Each team member came prepared and focused and passed the test with flying colors. The coaches were very excited with the results, and are doing are great job pushing the team and keeping spirits high.

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Last weekend, the women’s basketball players and coaches embarked on their first ever team retreat. No one knew what to expect from the short 36 hour time period, but the results were incredible. With complete isolation and removal from distractions, the team was able to properly focus and think about what was expected and wanted for the 2013-14 season. The team spent time thinking, reflecting, and discussing team plans and goals. We discussed team strengths and the value and importance of what each individual player brings to the team. After connecting on a deeper level, the team left the retreat house exhausted from a long weekend, but eager for the start of the season.

RETREAT2Practice begins Monday, Sept. 30. Despite the 7:30 a.m. start, everyone will be there with enthusiasm and a readiness to win the day. Watch out Patriot League! The Loyola women’s basketball team is geared up and ready to make our mark.

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Krusen Around The World – Part 4

Family Reunion in Mannheim, Germany

ImageWith my European study tour coming to an end, it was time to visit family in Germany. I was extremely excited to get to go back! I flew into Frankfurt, where my dad met me and then we drove to Mannheim to visit family. Shortly, after we arrived we went to a restaurant where we had dinner with the whole family. ImageI had never met my family overseas, so I couldn’t wait to finally meet them. I’ve seen pictures and heard stories but never got to meet them so this trip was very special for me! At dinner, I got to meet about 12 of my cousins and relatives, which was a great way to start the trip. After dinner, four of my cousins took us to Heidelberg and we walked around town and watched some of the soccer cup game. The atmosphere around town was insane because it was the first time two German teams were playing in the championship. FC Bayern Munich pulled out the victory, and it was very exciting to be among the atmosphere during the game.

The next day, my cousins Marco and Daniel were going to the gym and were nice enough to take me along. Later that day, my dad and I went over to my cousin Henry’s house and had an amazing home cooked meal. There were probably ten of us total for dinner, including my cousin Henry, his wife Mimi, his three sons Daniel, Marco, and Iven, my cousin Bernd, my dad’s aunt Ursula, and Daniel’s fiancé Laura. It was great to spend the day with the family and have some authentic home cooked German food. We had schnitzel, white asparagus, potatoes, and some German pastries/desserts. Everything was incredible!! After dinner, we hung out for a little while and then finished the night off playing Rummy. Needless to say, I wasn’t very good, but it was still tons of fun.

On Monday, I got to meet some more family for the first time. Around lunchtime, we went to my uncle Gunter and aunt Lea’s house. Their kids, Sandi and Rachel, and Sandi’s daughter Larissa joined us for lunch. It was great to meet more family. We had a traditional German lunch with weiswurst, pretzels, cheeses, and tomatoes and cucumbers. After lunch we hung out and looked through old photo albums. We then went for a little walk through the neighborhood and went to dinner at a local restaurant called Gasthaus Morgenrote, where I got goulash and knödel.  I also got to try some kassaptzen, which is a spaetzel and cheese casserole. I loved it all! It was another great day meeting some more family for the first time.

The following day, Tuesday, was our last day in Munich. My dad and I started the day off just like we did all the other days by heading to the local outdoor court to play some basketball! But today when we got the courts, there were three little boys playing soccer on one side, so I went to the open half and just started my workout. After a few minutes, I noticed that the boys stopped their game and were sitting on the side watching me shoot. A little while later they wanted to play with me, 3 against 1. ImageSo we played a little 3 vs. 1, and I have to say it was really fun! The three boys were so happy and smiling and laughing the whole time. It made my day to see them having so much fun. That afternoon my dad and I went into downtown Munich and walked around and did a little shopping. Around 4p.m. we went over to my cousin Henry’s house one last time for a farewell dinner. Aunt Mimi made knödel, some different meat dishes, spaetzel, a German chicken stew dish, and a tiramisu cake with berries for dessert. It was delicious as always! After dinner we all hung out on the patio for a little bit and then some people played cards and my cousin Marco took Daniel, Laura and I to see his flat. It was absolutely amazing…I wanted to move there (lol). When we got back to the house it was time to say goodbye to everyone :( It was time to go home and head back to Baltimore for summer school. During our goodbyes, we all got a little emotional. I had such an amazing time meeting everyone and spending time with them. I couldn’t thank them enough for everything they did and making it one of the best couple days I could’ve asked for. It was truly an unforgettable trip! I miss my family already and I can’t wait to see them all again soon J I am so grateful and thankful for the two and a half weeks I got to spend in Europe with friends and family. But, it is time to head back home to the United States and Loyola for summer school! Image

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Krusen Around The World – Part 3

Austria was absolutely incredible, but unfortunately its time to leave! Our next stop, Verona, ITALIA!! We arrived in Verona on Sunday afternoon. When we got there we were supposed to get lunch in town and have a tour around the city, but it started to downpour after lunch so the tour was cancelled. Even though it was pouring rain, the town was extremely crowded because of a One Direction concert that night. As we were eating lunch, the one Direction bus was arriving.  The fans started screaming and tons of people, with umbrellas in hand, started chasing the bus down the street. It was mass chaos!! Later, that day the rain stopped and a few friends and I walked around, to do some sightseeing, a little shopping, and got some dinner. We got our first real Italian meal and it was amazing! The bruschetta was to die for, and of course after dinner we had to stop and try some authentic Italian gelato (which was delicious).  On our way back to hotel we heard the One Direction concert going on in the arena. The next morning we had a site visit at Frau Shoes, where we got to see how the shoes are made and learn about their business. Some of my classmates even bought a pair. We then had the whole afternoon free, so my friend and I went sightseeing a little more and went to Juliet’s house (from Romeo and Juliet) and saw her famous balcony. We also saw some different plazas around town and did some more shopping. That night our whole class had dinner with a class, who was studying abroad, from the University of Illinois. It was pretty cool to meet some other college students from the States. The next morning we had to be up bright and early for a site visit at Masi Winery and then it was off to Rome. At Masi, we got a tour of the winery, and got to see how wine is made. We saw where the grapes are dried and the barrels the wine is kept in until ready. At the end of the tour, we had a wine testing where we tried three different types of wine. Some people even bought a bottle for their parents, but unfortunately they couldn’t ship it and I had no more room in my suitcase (Sorry mom and dad!). After Masi we had a six-hour bus ride to Rome. Luckily, I was able to get a lot of work done, while still finding time to get some rest.

ImageWe finally arrived in Rome, and I honestly can’t believe it’s our last city. I was excited to see what Rome had to offer. We got in around 8:30 p.m., and we were all exhausted so a few of us grabbed a quick dinner by the hotel, got some gelato, and then relaxed near the hotel. The next morning we had a site visit at ICE Italian Trade Commission. We had the rest of the afternoon free so my friends and I went sightseeing and shopping in downtown Rome. Unfortunately, while we were walking it started to rain but we took shelter at a restaurant and waited it out. We then went to see the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, and Spanish Steps. ImageBoth places were really crowded, but we were able to walk up the Spanish Steps. The view from the top was incredible. Later that night a group of us went to Campo di Fiori and got some dinner and hung out. We had an early start the next morning because we had a visit at Johnson and Johnson where they talked about the different consumer products and medical equipment. That afternoon we went to see the famous Roman Colosseum.Image We were lucky the line wasn’t too long and we were able to go inside and see what it really looked like. The architecture, history, and design of the Colosseum was absolutely amazing! Since it was our second to last day, the whole class and professors had a farewell dinner at a local Italian restaurant. It was great for all 29 of us to all hang out together one last time. Our last day in Rome was a free day, so a few of us got up real early (in an attempt to avoid the long lines) and took a trip to Vatican City. Since we beat the rush and avoided the long lines, we were able to go inside St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel. I’ve seen hundreds of pictures of the Vatican but it is nothing like being able to see it in person. It was so cool to see Michelangelo’s famous painting on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. When we got back from the Vatican we were all exhausted so we just hung out around the hotel for a while until some of us went to dinner. ImageLater that night after dinner, a lot of us went to go see the Spanish steps and Trevi fountain. It was so nice because it was all lit up and there weren’t many people there.  The group of us took pictures and enjoyed the view on our last night in Rome. No one wanted to go back because the next morning it was time to say goodbye.

I honestly can’t believe that our trip is over! I had an amazing two weeks in Europe visiting Germany, Austria, and Italy.  I made some great friends and unforgettable memories. I am so grateful that I was able to go on this trip and experience so many different cultures and countries! I had the time of my life and it is something that I will never forget!! I miss everyone already!!!!Image

P.S Rather than going back to the States, I went back to Germany for a few days to visit some family. I’m toing to enjoy Europe for a few more days before I make my way back home. Stay tuned for one more post about my trip to Mannheim, Germany!

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