Hema "The Chocolate Rocket" Chengkalath
As a fifth-year Dino this will be a year of high expectations for Hema Chengkalath,however she’s up for the challenge. Full of energy and passion, she helps boost her team morale in so many ways. She always seems to have a positive attitude, a smile never leaves her face and she plays with enough heart to share with the whole team.
Chengkalath hopes that this year she can step it up a notch and help lead her team by example. Chengkalath adds dimension and depth to the Dinos squad with her great speed and her sense of field position and game flow. "The Chocolate Rocket" will be a player Head Coach Robin Slot will go to often to help dictate the pace of the games.
As a Political Science Major, she has future plans to one day enter into law, a career that will certainly show how much fight this Dino has. She calls herself an "innocent angel," but ask former teammate Leanne Pelosi and she will tell you that she’s "a little devil inside."
Hard working and dedicated, she loves to organize outings with her teammates, taking them on wild and crazy endeavors, that build strong bonds between her and fellow players that can be seen both on and off the field.
Brian "The Lion" Newmarch
Dedication, hard work, passion, and leadership are just a few things that describe Dinos soccer captain Brian Newmarch, but only scratch the surface of who he really is and what he brings to his team. Entering his fifth year of eligibility, Newmarch will now be juggling work and soccer, rather than school and soccer, as a management intern student. The former Calgary Storm player has elected to play for the Dinos this season.
"I felt I was not getting the playing time I would have liked, not to mention it was cutting into my social life," said Newmarch. "The last straw was drawn when I was hit with a sticky fine. After that I decided to call it quits."
Newmarch did not walk away from the Storm with nothing; he will be rejoining the Dinos with new experience and a better sense of leadership that he will share with teammates on and off the field. This Tiger plans on winning as many games as possible for his team, but when it comes to the dating game, he has been pulled to the sidelines by girlfriend Kristina–he ensures though that fellow Tigers Matt Houston, Jon Remmer, Andrew Zakaluzny and a new Diesel wearing rookie to fill the void in the ladies lives.
Q: How do you feel you will be contributing to the team this year?
Chengkalath: "I hope to lead by example both on and off the field, score lots of goals and work hard. I hope to help some of the younger girls and red shirts find their game."
Newmarch: "I hope to create a positive environment during training and lead by example; I’m going to give all I have to give."
Q: What are the goals for your team this year?
Chengkalath: "Of course we would like to capture a Canada West title, especially after losing out in the first round the past two years, and then head to nationals."
Newmarch: "We don’t want to look too far ahead; I think our strategy will be to take things game by game. It would be nice to stay near the top of the standings in the Canada West Conference for the whole season. Like every year, we’ll strive to win our conference for that chance at nationals."
Q: What is going to help your team achieve their goals and what will you need to work on the most from last season?
Chengkalath: "We will definitely need to finish up on the scoring opportunities and step it up a notch. We have a good defense we just need to improve on the offense."
Newmarch:"I think training will be the primary thing along with staying healthy and team cohesion. We will also need to stay focused on the field throughout the game and take advantage of scoring opportunities, I think that’s what hurt us the most last year."
Q: Who do you feel will be the Dinos strongest competition?
Chengkalath: "UBC is always strong and same with
U of A."
Newmarch: "The coast teams are always strong, but I think the U of A will definitely give us the most trouble."
Q: Who would you like to play in a Canada West final and why?
Chengkalath: "U of A. There has always been a good rivalry between us, and having friends and players you’ve played with adds to it."
Newmarch: "Definitely U of A. With them it feels personal; some of us have had their coach and have even played with some of their players on provincial teams."
Q: How do you feel about teams from the East going far in the standings when they may not have done so well if they played in the West?
Chengkalath: "It’s frustrating, but you have no control over it. It would be nice to have a wild card to allow more teams from the Canada West to play at nationals."
Newmarch:"The Canada West has always been stronger and we’re always in the finals it seems. I guess it is a bit of a piss off."
Q: Do you feel your team is now weaker or stronger with the loss of key players from last season and the gain of new rookies?
Chengkalath: "The loss of players is a big deal, but it just means that now is the time for others to step up. I think we will stay strong and be able to go out there and win."
Newmarch:"The loss of players like David Hernandez definitely takes its toll, but I feel we still have a strong team. We have new talented rookies with some experience that will bring enthusiasm to the team."
Q: Why should fans come out and support the Dino games?
Chengkalath: "We’re are exciting and fun to watch. There is a lot of talent out on the field."
Newmarch: "There is a lot of talent on the field and the games are exciting. We put on a good show for the fans."
> Q: What kind of advice does your coach give you before the game as a pre-game talk?
Chengkalath: "He basically tells us to go out and have a good game. I think that’s all I can tell you without getting in trouble."
Newmarch: "I don’t know if I can repeat what he says word for word, but it goes something like bleeping bleeping zone, bleeping coverage, be bleeping direct, and no bleeping passes."
Q: Why should fans come out to watch the men’s games over the women’s games or vice versa?
Chengkalath: "For one thing we’re better looking, and we’re way more exciting to watch."
Newmarch: "We’re the better looking ones, not to mention you will broaden your vocabulary by listening to what Head Coach Andy Gibbs has to say on the field. we’re more aggressive, and you can’t forget about the Tigers."
Q: Why do you feel soccer cabs are so notorious?
Chengkalath: "Everyone is out there to have a good time, plus everyone is so drunk."
Newmarch: "Anyone who comes to our cab is ready to party. Plus all the girls are ready to put out–just kidding."
Q: So if you could be one player on your team who would it be and why?
Chengkalath: "Erin Ramsay–when she’s healthy. She is the tallest player and scores a lot of headers; it would be fun to be tall for once."
Newmarch: "Hmmm that’s a tough one; I think I would have to go with "Diggler" [a.k.a. Andrew Zakaluzny]. This dude gets all the ladies, he makes awesome web pages and he’s Diggler. Need I say more?"
Q: Who is the hottest player on the men’s / women’s team?
Chengkalath: "Well, for the men it’s Matt Houston. And I guess for the ladies it’s Charlotte Sullivan."
Newmarch: "All the Tigers, especially Matt Houston. For the ladies I would have to say , Hema [Chengkalath]."