As MTV airs the final episode of this fall's "Jersey Shore" on Thursday, Sammi Giancola said she loved her time in Italy and that it's time for her to get back to soccer.
"I love to play, and I still do with my friends. I jump at it at any chance I can get," said Giancola, known as Sammi Sweetheart on the hit show, which just finished its fourth season. "It's a great workout and exercise, and it also helps my mind. It releases stress and helps exercise my brain."
Giancola, 24, is one of the few members of the show actually from New Jersey, growing up in Hazlet, N.J. She played soccer for William Paterson University before auditioning and becoming a reality TV star on the top-rated show in MTV's history. Even so, she is trying to keep everything in perspective.
"I like to stay grounded. I had a life before the show, and I will have a life after the show," she said. "My family is great. They still like me for me. I'm not Sammi Sweetheart in my private life."
Giancola is ready to film Season 5 for the spring. And everyone will be asking about her on-again, off-again relationship with Ronnie Ortiz-Magro.
"People don't see the full picture of how things are when it comes to the show," Giancola said. "They film for 24 hours a day, and TV loves to edit it in a way to make it more dramatic.
"I wish you could have seen how much fun we girls had in Italy. You would have seen me having a great time over there. I know what kind of person I am."
For life after the show, Giancola is venturing into fashion and starting her own business, recently becoming the face of Dangerous perfume.
"I need to be happy, no matter what it is. I'm not letting TV dictate who I really am," she said. "I'm focusing on my fragrance line. That's what I'm working on. It's dangerously sweet, like me."