In Their Own Words: Kelsey Archuleta

Oct. 25, 2007

Throughout the course of the 2007 season members of the Kansas soccer team will share their thoughts in the first person. Today, senior defender Kelsey Archuleta reflects back on her four years in the Crimson and Blue and talks about the experience of returning to her home state of Colorado last Friday.

On going home to play <?xml:namespace prefix=”st1″ ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags”?>Colorado:
“It was nice because I don’t get to see my family very often. It was nice to see my aunts and uncles and grandparents. Having them there and being very supportive, it is always nice to go home. And you get to see the mountains. My parents occasionally come out to see me, but I don’t get to see my brother very often because he plays soccer in high school.”<?xml:namespace prefix=”o” ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office”?>

On how the seniors from Colorado felt about the trip:

“It was very special because we have a lot of friends on Colorado’s team that we have played for years and years. Colleen (Quinn), Afton (Sauer) and I have known each other since we were 11 or 12 years old, and we have been playing together since then. It has been kind of like an everyday thing. But it is a little more special when you get to go back home with all of our friends and family there to see us.”

On how the seniors from Colorado chose to attend KU:

“I think for Colleen (Quinn) it had a little bit of an influence because she was also looking at other schools. Afton (Sauer) committed first and then I came on my visit a week or two later and fell in love with (KU). She committed and she has always been my best friend, so we were just like `okay, let’s go’. I think Colleen committed a couple of months later. We really pressured her to come to KU because we thought it would be so much fun. I think we all influenced each other to come here.”

On her perseverance through injuries:

“After my freshman year, they told me when I got injured that I probably would never be able to play again. John (Zirkelbach), our trainer, said he would do everything in his power to get me back. That determination and everybody pushing me just made me go out and try my best. Even though there was a lot of pain, I fought through it. I love to play and that is what keeps me going.”

On where she gets her toughness:

“It (my toughness) probably comes from my dad. He always told me to be better than he ever was and to fight through everything and get up and keep working. I think it all started when I was little.”

On playing varsity football in high school:

“It was a lot of fun. The guys that I played with were very helpful and very supportive after they knew I could actually do something. The first couple of weeks the guys were harsh on me saying, `you can’t do it, you can’t do it’. Some of the coaches were rude to me too. But I earned their respect and I earned the guys’ respect and they watched out for me like I was their sister. I look back and I am glad I did it because it was a lot of fun.”

On how her hard work affects the team:

“The girls really help me and push me to keep working hard. I have had a lot of girls who have come up to me and told me that I have inspired them to work hard. So that inspires me to keep working hard. I think it is paying off; the coaches and my teammates are seeing it and it is a big accomplishment for me to get more playing time and more minutes. I want to show people what I was like before I got injured.”

On her last season playing with teammate Afton Sauer:

“It will be hard. Obviously we will have withdrawals. We both plan on moving back to Colorado (after we graduate). I am hoping to be done by this summer, and Afton will be done next year. I think we will still talk a lot and when she comes back to Colorado we can see each other as often as we want. I think it will be hard that we will not be playing together anymore and we have been doing it since we were 11 or 12 years old; playing together on the same team, side by side. I will always cherish those moments.”

On how she wants to be remembered at KU:

“I want people to see that I go out and try my hardest whether I play three minutes or don’t play any minutes. I am always out there cheering my team on or running if they need me to just run around. Whatever they need, I just want people to know that I give everything and that I was someone who never gave up.”