Sports
DEERFOOT? Dinos midfielder Leanne Pelosi will be missed on the field but its her off-field legend that will live on for years to come.
Mike Attersall/The Gauntlet

Soccersaur tells story walking

Leanne Pelosi leaves the pitch but the tales will remain

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Leanne Pelosi took her last shots in a Dinos uniform this season and the fifth-year midfielder left an impressive mark with her teammates and friends. While everyone was quick to praise Pelosi's on-field brilliance, her great marks in school and her infectiously positive personality, it was the other stories that truly get the essence of Leanne across. Everyone's got a Leanne story. Just read.

"She got in a fistfight on the field in indoor. It was against Lethbridge, and one of their girls took Leanne out. They both fell down and the other girl kind of pushed her getting up. Leanne started swinging and they both got kicked out. Leanne walked up into the stands and her dad was there waiting for her with a Slurpee."

- Robin Slot, women's soccer Head Coach

"While on a field school through the Mediterranean we stopped in Florence. Our dear Leanne decided that she had to attend a football game[soccer for those too North American to understand]--Juventus was in town. Against all cautions from the locals, we headed off with no idea of the location of the stadium or how to get there. After trying to board trains and buses without paying, we eventually got there. There was a lot of security including a couple hundred cops with machine guns and riot gear. So what does Leanne do? She tries to climb over a 15-foot fence topped with razor wire and armed guards on the other side. After telling her to get the fuck off a million times over, I finally pulled her down for fear of us getting shot. Then I did her a favour by speaking French to the only Italian guard who spoke anything but Italian and who also just happened to be the head honcho. The guard escorted us into the stadium and we stood 50 metres from the field."

- Mike Attersall, Geography Field School

"When she runs, her elbows are up by her chin and she looks somewhat like a penguin."

- Anonymous

"A practice wouldn't be a practice without Leanne push-ups. Similar to a warmup or a shooting drill, Leanne push-ups have become a normal part of daily training for the Dinos. Usually in a drill, if the team goes right, you can pretty much bet Leanne's gone left or she's lost in the trees somewhere. Either way, even before Robin has to say anything, most of us have already started the push-ups. Leanne usually protests Robin's decision or does the push-ups wrong, which results in more push-ups (which again, most of us anticipate and are already working on). Oh well, we still love Leanne and we'll miss her next year!"

- Stephanie Bourigault, women's soccer team

"When I was 16, we played on the Alberta team together and we'd known each other for about eight years at that point. She was at my house and she saw a picture on the wall where there were two images of me put together. Leanne asked: 'Do you have a twin?'"

- Katie Lee, women's soccer team

"When we won Nationals in 1998, we had a game against Queens. They had one really skilled player, and Leanne was matched up against her. In the first 10 minutes, Leanne went through their player, clean tackle, and took her out of the game. Then she went and scored a brilliant goal to put us ahead. That shows the two sides of Leanne--the physical presence and the great skills."

- Robin Slot, women's soccer Head Coach

"If you ever insult Leanne, the first thing she says is 'no you are.' For example, if I were to say 'Leanne, you run like a penguin,' without thinking she'll automatically say 'no, you run like a penguin.' You could say anything and her response would be the same."

- Taryn Swiatek, women's soccer team

"Leanne, you're awfully blonde today. 'No, uhhhhhhh, you are.'"

- Brian Newmarch, men's soccer team

"I remember my first year, I had a lot of trouble concentrating on practice. The girls team practised right beside us and they definitely had talent. Sometimes I would 'unintentionally' miss our goal and send my ball to the girls pitch. 'I'll get it,' I'd yell, and fetch the wayward ball. On one of my many trips to the ladies field, I happened to notice one girl in particular. The way she ran, the way she pranced, the way she got mad at the other girls. It moved me. I found out her name--Pelosi. I found out her game too. Professional soccer players. She loved them. Especially Manchester United midfielders.

"We eventually met and one thing led to another. I had a crush on her. I psyched myself up, and decided to ask her out. So after practice one night, I put on my best tennis shorts, spiked my hair and approached her outside MacEwan Hall. I said 'Hey.' I was cool.

'You going out this weekend?' she asked me.

'Yeah, I was thinking that maybe we could...' I started to ask, when she interrupted me.

'Sorry, my ride is here. See ya!'

"Next thing I know she's being whisked away in some dude's hot Ferrari. License Plate: BECKHAM. I have yet to ask out another girl."

-Andrew "Diggler" Zakaluzny, men's soccer team

"One time we were talking about hepatitis and how it makes you turn yellow and Leanne said that she had gonorrhoea when she was a baby. We all started laughing, and I said, 'don't you mean jaundice?'

"Leanne: 'Oh yeah...'"

-Katie Lee, women's soccer team

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