An impressive “deal”: women’s soccer player wins trip, cash

Freshman+soccer+player+Kristina+Change+and+her+boyfriend%2C+Ryan%2C+dressed+in+the+flamingo+costumes+they+wore+on+Lets+Make+a+Deal.

Courtesy of Kristina Change

Freshman soccer player Kristina Change and her boyfriend, Ryan, dressed in the flamingo costumes they wore on “Let’s Make a Deal.”

Nick DeMarsh, the Buffalo State women’s soccer coach, was told by one of his players that he had to watch the March 20 episode of the popular game show “Let’s Make a Deal” on CBS.

 

When he turned on the program, here’s what he saw: Kristina Change, a freshman on the women’s soccer team, and her boyfriend Ryan dressed in flamingo costumes.

 

Change is originally from Castiac, Calif., and took her boyfriend home with her in the spring, when both of them attended “Let’s Make a Deal” in clothes bound to make a statement.  What happened after that was far from what she had imagined.

 

“(Host) Wayne Brady called three contestants up for a game,” she said. “I was first and was given the option to choose box No. 1 or pass it to the person behind me. I chose to keep it and I won a home theatre system with a 3D TV and surround sound.”

 

Having the opportunity to be a constant on a game show and win something would satisfy almost anyone.  But not this soccer player, who had her eyes set on more.

 

When the “Big Deal of the Day” segment came around at the end of the show, Change was in the position to either keep the home theatre system and TV, or to try and go for the grand prize.  After the first three contestants all choose to keep their prizes, she was faced with the decision.

 

As she is on the field, Change was aggressive and decided to trade her prizes in for a chance at the big one, hiding behind one of three doors. She chose door No. 2.

 

The first door was a jet ski. Door No. 3 was a vault consisting of $2,500.

 

“At that point I knew I won the Big Deal,” she said.  “It was very surreal at that moment but I was more excited to see what was behind my door.”

 

Change won the opportunity to travel 16 hours on a plane and spend a week in South Africa at the Palace of the Lost City, along with $6,500 in cash.

 

“I was so excited. I couldn’t stop screaming,” she said. “I just turned to my family and my boyfriend, and they ran down on stage to hug me. It was such a blast.”

 

Change and her boyfriend left for the vacation on July 4, and were treated like royalty when they arrived at the hotel.

 

Free breakfast, a safari trip, and access to a water park attached to the hotel were just a few things they indulged in. They also went zip-lining over Sun City and played with cubs at a lion farm called Ukatula.

 

“We had an awesome time there,” Change said. “We made so many memories I’ll never forget.”

 

Johnathan Snyder can be reached by email at [email protected]