The Coastal Carolina University women's soccer team is getting ready for the 2007 season as it has gone through the first week of preseason camp. The Lady Chanticleers have battled the heat and humidity of South Carolina in its first week, going through three practices the first three days, with two practices on Monday and Tuesday. Classes start on Wednesday, so CCU will go back to one practice a day with more work in the weight room.
Coastal head coach Rohan Naraine starts his second season as the Lady Chants' head coach and already has seen a difference with the players' offseason workouts.
"I think the offseason work in the weight room has really helped some of the players," Naraine said. "It has really benefited them because I can see a difference on the field. Theyre stronger and more confident than they were last year. Thats why its important we did that weight program in the spring and I think its going to help us in the fall."
"When they came in fit we didnt have to spend as much time just running," Assistant Coach Tracey Leipold added. "We were able to work on some technical and tactical things right away, where a lot of times you have to start with fitness."
All of the fall sports teams' have had to deal with heat wave this August. Naraine and Leipold feel practicing in this weather will help them when the season starts.
"Its just one of those things you have to battle through," Leipold said. "I think it helps because this is what we play in. We have two tournaments in Florida and theyre dealing with it too. I think its a disadvantage if youre not practicing in it."
"I think it might have helped them," Naraine commented. "Its good for them. Theyre used to the heat. Im proud of them in how they have battled through it."
Coastal will be without senior Emma Humphries and redshirt junior Emily McColl the first part of the season due to playing for New Zealand in the Women's World Cup. The duo is practicing until the end of the month and Naraine said it's helping even with finding the starting lineup for the opener.
"The team has been battling because weve been switching players around," Naraine said. "Weve been trying different players different positions. Its like a chess game trying to get the right players in there. With Emily and Emma, theyve come in and theyve shown the level. Its good for other players to see that level and push themselves."
Coastal opens the season at Wofford on Sept. 3, which is the start of four games in seven days. Coastal is at #19 Clemson Wednesday, Sept. 5 and takes part in the Kick Out Cancer Tournament in Jacksonville, Fla., Sept. 7 and 9. The home opener for the Lady Chants is Wednesday, Sept. 12 at 7 p.m., against The Citadel.