The Sacramento State women's basketball team had a very full fourth day on the island, including a practice, beach-front dinner, and an exciting opportunity to tour and explore Old San Jaun. Old San Jaun is about a half hour from San Juan and is the oldest settlement on the island. There was much to see in Old San Juan but also much to see on the drive there, as the team continued to see new parts of the island, including some that are still showing clear signs of the destruction caused by Maria.
Below are player blogs from both freshman Anna Weibel and senior Justyce Dawson, recouting the fun-filled day four. Expect to see more posts as each member of the team will have a chance to share their reactions, thoughts, and observations while here in Puerto Rico.
Also, be sure to check out Anna's and Justyce's photos from today in the Player Blog Photo Album!
Day 4 Player Blogs – Tuesday, Dec. 19
We started our fourth day in Puerto Rico just like the others, with breakfast at the hotel, before heading back to the Colesio for our second practice since we've been here.
Going into a practice today hard, but the first practice the day after a loss is always a tough one. Many of us still have the previous night's loss still on our minds and it can be hard to focus, especially when you're on the same court you lost on the night before. However, we always do our best to push forward and today we all felt like we had a strong practice filled with lots of skill work and shooting. It was a tough practice, fror sure, but a good one.
After practice we ate lunch at Church's Chicken. After such a hard practice we were already to eat and had plenty of chicken tenders, wings, and biscuits with honey to fill up before we heading out for our first real adventure into San Juan.
We all climbed onto a small bus and left our hotel, heading for a tour of Old San Jaun, an area about half an hour from our hotel. We got to see Puerto Rico's capitol building before making our first stop at the Cemeterio Santa Maria Magdalena De Pazzis. This old cemetery was really cool to see, and it's right on a cliff that overlooks the beach. Our guide told us that only very important Puerto Ricans are able to be buried here and that even then there is a line.
Afterwards, we drove another few minutes to the main area of Old San Juan where we spent plenty of time walking the streets and shopping for souvenirs and Christmas gifts for friends and family back home. We may have also got a few things for ourselves, too. While exploring, Kennedy and I even got to take pictures with Santa Claus! (¡Feliz Navidad)!
After the trip to Old San Juan, we went back to our hotel and then walked to the beach for dinner. We found a local bar and grille that was right there on the beach and got to sit in the sand as we waited for our food. We ate fish tacos, Ahi tuna, and a the new team favorite: coconut rice.
Once dinner was done, we went back to the hotel to rest up. We still have another game, as tomorrow we take on Northern Illinois. Looking forward to getting back out there and coming away from Puerto Rico with a win!
Today was our fourth day on Isla Verde (Green Island) and our busiest day so far. For breakfast we ate downstairs at the hotel and shortly after breakfast we headed out to practice at Coliseo Rubén Zayas Montañez in Trujillo Alto. Practice went well, everyone worked hard and we got better.
After returning from the gym we ate lunch at Church's chicken. The line was long and the entire menu was in Spanish. I'm glad they had pictures of everything or I would've probably had a lot of trouble ordering.
Right after lunch the bus arrived to take us on a tour of Old San Juan. Throughout the ride our tour guide told us fun facts such as Puerto Rico being named because it means "rich port" (in Spanish). The bus ride didn't seem as long as it was because there was so much to see. On the way to our first stop we got to see Carmelo Anthony's basketball court, the capital building, and ruins from Hurricane Maria.
Our first stop was the Cemeterio Santa Maria Magdalena De Pazzis, which was located in a beautiful spot right off the ocean port. It's in the same location as an ancient Spanish fort called the Castillo San Felipe del Morro. Both the fort and the cemetery are at the top of some cliffs looking out north toward the Atlantic Ocean. It was a really beautiful day today and I was amazed at how pretty the view was looking out over the water.
Our second stop were within the streets of Old San Juan where we hung out as a team. Together we accomplished some Christmas gift and souvenir shopping for our families. Many of us found some great deals on mugs, t-shirts, keychains and sunglasses.
After a few hours we made it made it back and had dinner to-go at a restaurant down by the beach. I ordered fried fish and coconut rice, which was great. I would most definitely order the same thing again if I could.
Today time flew by, but that is because I had a lot of fun. It was a great bonding experience for us as a team and I'm glad I got experience it more of Puerto Rico outside of our hotel's area and the arena. We'll get to do that again on Thursday when we go to Humucao to help deliver supplies.
For now, though, it's onto tomorrow when we face Northern Illinois. I know the team agrees when I saw we're all looking forward to ending our trip 1-1. #StingersUp!