5 Minutes With Aaron Pitchkolan
Normally I can Google a player on the team and find out whatever I need to know while preparing for an interview. Not the case with defender Aaron Pitchkolan. He’s not on Twitter or Facebook. Or he may be on Facebook and he just hasn’t asked to be my friend yet.
Either way, the guy keeps his Internet personality to a minimum. I mean Pitch still uses AOL for email. Yes, the America Online. Cue the You’ve Got Mail jingle going off in your head. (You’re welcome)
The Aurora, Colo. native was born on March 14th, sharing a birthday with Albert Einstein, Billy Crystal, Sammi ‘Sweetheart’ Giancola and Jerry from Ben & Jerry’s. He attended the University of Tampa for his freshman year before transferring to the University of West Virginia and spent last year with the San Antonio Scorpions before joining Minnesota United.
I actually met Aaron back in March before I had joined the organization as the team reporter and became a fan immediately. He’s funny, easy going and besides being a huge Colorado sports fan, is an incredible addition to this team. After losing captain Kyle Altman after the spring season, it was important for a player like Aaron to step up and if you’ve attended a match lately, you know how instrumental Pitch’s presence has been for the team.
I caught up with Pitch at the end of practice on a sunny, beautiful October day to ask him about his time here in Minnesota.
You’ve been in Minnesota for around eight months now. What do you think so far? I love it.
Summer was awesome, once we got through the winter part, which took a little bit of time. But it’s really grown on me. I love the city. I love Minneapolis. I haven’t spent too much time in St. Paul, but I’m really enjoying [Minnesota].
The team picked up a much-needed win at home over your former team, the San Antonio Scorpions. What’s it like playing against former teammates?
It is kind of fun. It’s happened in the past. In the soccer world, most people end up playing against their old team at some point. It’s nothing new. Hopefully you get the win. That makes it better. The win [over San Antonio] was big, though. It was a long time coming. There have been a couple of games that haven’t gone our way at the end. The Tampa one comes to mind especially. But it’s good for the fans to get to see a win.
There is a little fantasy football competition happening right now on the team.
Yeah, I’m actually the commissioner.
Aaron Pitchkolan, commissioner of the official Minnesota United Fantasy Football league. That has a nice ring to it. You play against Mike Ambersley, Edi Buro, Floyd Franks, Max Griffin, Mitch Hildebrandt, Miguel Ibarra, Sinisa Ubiparipovic, Matt VanOekel and Connor Tobin and Travis Wall, who are sharing a team. Who is the biggest trash talker on the team?
To be honest, most of the guys hadn’t played fantasy football before which I was shocked by when I first came to the team because on other teams I’ve played on, that’s a big deal. But the biggest trash talker? I don’t know. Mitch is the most fun to talk fantasy football with because he gets defensive immediately. He gets upset about things. So he’s fun to pick on. Miguel is also a good one because his team is terrible and he hasn’t won.
Who is the biggest star on your team? Peyton Manning.
I went with Broncos so I’ve got Manning and Demaryius Thomas, those are my two go-to guys.
You’re a Colorado guy. Is that where your allegiance is?
Yes, big, big anything Colorado sports fan.
Does that mean you’re going to watch the new Eric Decker reality television show?
No, that actually sounds terrible. We were actually talking about that the other day, someone said they saw it and that it was terrible. I’m not into that.
Well, you know he’s a Minnesota guy.
Yeah, I know he’s a Minnesota guy. But I have no interest in watching a television show on how he’s getting married or anything like that.
Do you follow any other sports besides football?
I always keep up with the Nuggets, the Avs, the Rockies. Big Rockies fan.
How about Michael Cuddyer winning the National League batting title?
Yeah, that’s big for the Rockies. If the rest of the team could pull through, it would be even better.
Do you follow any other soccer leagues?
Not as much as I used to. I keep in touch with the guys I used to play with in the MLS, I’ll keep tabs on them to see what they are doing. And then overseas stuff, there’s a lot of Premiere League games going on now with NBC’s contract so I’ve been watching a lot of those.
Ok, random question time. Kelly Kapowski or Topanga Lawrence?
Wow. That’s a good one. I gotta go Kelly Kapowski.
Mighty Ducks, best movie in the trilogy?
Gotta be D2. Last question.
What’s been the highlight of this year for you so far?
I think just seeing how this whole split season works. The first season we were in the hunt but it didn’t turn out for us in the end and I think it is exciting for us to have another opportunity right away in the second half of the season.
Catch Aaron Pitchkolan and the rest of Minnesota United’s team in action Saturday at the official watch party at Brit’s Pub in downtown Minneapolis as they take on the spring champion Atlanta Silverbacks at 6:30pm. Then head up to Blaine on October 19th as Minnesota United hosts the Carolina Railhawks for a 2:30pm kick-off. Tickets on sale now at 763.331.8777.
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