Bay FC Player Profile: Kiki Pickett

Bay FC Player Profile: Kiki Pickett

Courtesy of Bay FC

What has the experience been like so far playing for Bay FC?

Pickett: It feels like a second home to me. I’ve played here, or like 30 minutes away from here, for four years at Stanford University. It’s great being back at my roots and stepping into a team that’s very player-centric. We’re really trying to push and learn this new year.

Speaking of your Stanford ties, you’re a California girl from Southern California, but you came to play at Stanford. Explain that experience; you did win a national championship as you helped the team win it {Pickett flashes two fingers}, two right? Talk about your time being in the Bay Area.

Pickett: Yeah, I have so many good memories. There are a few fans, literally last week, who know me from Santa Barbara. They had old pictures of me from high school. The soccer world is so small. Whatever connections we can have and bring more people into the game, I’m excited that they come out and know about my past and history.

What got you into soccer and at what age did you start playing?

Pickett: I was like three years old. My family would do weekend games. I would do holiday games, and we would play each other, but it was always my family that threw me in there, and I just loved soccer from the get-go.

Were you on a travel team when you were 12 or 13?

Pickett: Absolutely! I’ve been on travel teams, and fun fact, my junior year of high school, I missed 60 percent of school.

But you were on the field playing, so that’s what counts, right?

Pickett: Yeah, yeah. The school wasn’t too happy with me, but I got a few absent letters in the mail, but I guess it all worked out.

The fans here have been amazing for you guys, but can you just take us back to the Wrigley Field experience, playing against Chicago, you scoring that first goal. Now you have had a chance to reflect on that, what was that moment like?

Pickett: It was historical. It was really good to expand women’s sports and have multiple people see it on an amazing platform. It didn’t really hit me until a few days after the match what that goal meant, what that game overall meant, until you see the social interaction that people have on social media, just texting me, etc. I still try not to think about it too much because we still have games to get going, but I love seeing women’s sports in general just progress, and hopefully, we can continue the progression.

Again, it was a historical night, 35,000 plus fans, the most to ever see a NWSL game. It looked like afterward you guys were soaking in every moment, every minute in, even after the match.

Pickett: Absolutely. They let our family and friends jump on the pitch too so they could see the pitch, take pictures. I’m glad my family was able to fly out there and enjoy the moment with me because, like you said, it was a great match, and to score a goal in that game, I was just glad everyone was there to support me.

You started out as a fullback when the season started, now you’re playing in more of a hybrid role, playing a lot of the midfield too. Have you liked Coach Albertin (Montoya) putting you in that position during the matches?

Pickett: Well, I think any position that keeps me on the field, I love. Anytime you get to kick a soccer ball in front of your fans and friends, I think it’s the best experience. I did have a little midfield knowledge back in high school, but I had to dust off those cobwebs and get it going. It’s good to be versatile and be able to help the team any way I can.

What do you like to do outside the pitch when you actually have some free time?

Pickett: Besides laying down on the couch? I like to read, and I like to bowl. We were bowling last week. I’m not going to tell you my numbers, but maybe after I’m done playing, I might join a league or something.

Where do you go bowling at? There aren’t too many bowling alleys around here anymore.

Pickett: We had to go to Cupertino a couple of times, and then maybe Sunnyvale one time, but yeah, there’s nothing too close around here.

Well, today is also a special day; it’s Juneteenth, a holiday that has been celebrated in this country for the past few years. What does that mean to you as a Black player playing professionally in the United States?

Pickett: I think it’s one of those things that we as a country have acknowledged, and I’m glad we are learning and experiencing our history. Being able to promote all the individuals involved in such an event and being able to celebrate that with people that I love and being able to share my history with people. And hopefully, being able to spend some time with people today will be great, but it's a wonderful experience, and hopefully, we can continue to learn and progress through history.

The team has had a recent string of tough losses, but what hope can you tell the fans to have this Saturday against Angel City FC?

Pickett: Yeah, it’s a SoCal-NorCal rivalry. I think we’ve beaten them once, and I think we can do it again. So I think keeping the morale up and sticking to our program and hopefully lifting up the stands because I know, like you said, they are always with us, but I think just keeping it positive throughout the whole game and staying with us throughout the whole year. I think we have something under our belts; you just gotta hold on.

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