Aug. 1, 2012
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The Alabama soccer team officially began its training camp under fifth-year head coach Todd Bramble on Wednesday morning at the Alabama Soccer Stadium. The team got things going in the early morning and then will meet again this evening for another training session to wrap up the first day.
"It's a good start," Bramble said. "A lot of times you come out and the first practice isn't the best because there is so much excitement and anxiety. Everybody is trying to measure each other up and see where everybody is. It's super competitive. It's usually after a couple of days when players start to relax and get used to the environment and the new personnel that we have. Then we will hit our stride and get going. It's a great starting point this morning."
Counting this evening's session, Alabama will have 11 more practices, including four more days of double practice sessions, before its first exhibition match at Clemson on August 11.
"I see that we have a lot of talent," Bramble explained. "There are a lot of reasons to be excited about what the season holds for us. Like any team and any season, we need to stay healthy. Team chemistry needs to be good and morale needs to stay high. All those little details that go into it will need to fall into place. It's going to be a talented team and it's going to be fun for the fans to come out and watch."
Alabama has 21 players in camp, including 14 letterwinners and six starters from a squad that made the NCAA tournament last season.
"It was really fun," senior defender Ashley Willis said. "We ran the beep test for the first time and just got that out of the way. We had some passing drills and then we got to play a little bit. It was exciting to have everyone flying around and see where everyone is at and get the butterflies out of the way."
The Tide will look to continue its winning ways and return to the postseason when it officially opens the year at Kennesaw State on August 17, at 6 p.m.