From Beach Waves to Two-a-Days

By: Maxine Goynes '11

Meleana Shim (MS), a native from Honolulu, Hawaii and a rising junior has played an integral role for Santa Clara women's soccer.  In the past two years, Shim has played in 42 of the last 45 games. When you watch Shim play you instantly notice her finesse on the ball. In order to accomplish such comfort with the soccer ball one must have a lot of time, patience and practice, all of which Shim routinely has. (SCB) checked in with Shim to see what she was working on this summer to come back ready to make a difference in the fall season.

SCB: How did you think the team played in the spring?
: I thought we played well. There are certainly things we need to work on but going 5-0 was a great start. Personally, the more games that I play, the more comfortable I am. I enjoy being on the field...even if it's at holding mid. (laughs)

SCB: What were some strengths of the team ending the spring season that you are confident will carry over to the fall season?
We were having fun. Preseason is a grind but I know we'll be fine as long as we remember that we're here because we love the game. The competitiveness of college athletics can sometimes overpower the enjoyable aspects so it's always refreshing to look around and see my teammates having a good time.

SCB: What are you personally working on this summer in preparation for the upcoming fall season?
 I am focusing on staying healthy, getting fit and practicing my free kicks.

SCB: What are you most excited for this upcoming season?
I'm most excited about coming together as a new team. I'm really looking forward to game days at Buck Shaw. We only get so many games.

SCB: What was the hardest challenge for you last season? And how are you going to combat that this season?
The hardest challenge last season was dealing with my shin splints. After the yearlong relationship I've had with them, I've finally figured out how to manage them. They are pretty fickle, so I need to keep close tabs on them.

SCB: Now that you are upperclassmen what role do you see for yourself within the team?
I have a responsibility to make sure that we are exceeding our standards in training and matches. I also have to make sure that the younger girls are comfortable on and off the field. I remember what it was like being a freshman. I was always nervous because the whole thing was a new experience. Now that I have two years under my belt, I can share some of the things I've learned in hopes of making it an easier transition for my new teammates.

: Is there any game in particular you are most looking forward too?
: Every game is important; we learned that the hard way last year. To answer your question, definitely Stanford, that's no surprise.