The 2012 Wallace Community College-Selma Lady Patriots volleyball team will be looking to gain experience and become a strong defensive squad throughout the upcoming season, as the team features only three sophomores. The Lady Patriots will play their first game on Aug. 31 in a tournament in Pensacola, Fla. -- Robert Hudson

Young Wallace team looking to gain experience in 2012

Published 10:04pm Tuesday, August 7, 2012

After making program history last season, the Wallace Community College-Selma Lady Patriots have returned to the court and are preparing for another year.

The Lady Patriots began practices in late July as they prepare for the upcoming season and their first game in the Pensacola State College Tournament on Aug. 31 in Pensacola, Fla.

While last year’s team made school history by advancing to the Alabama Community College Conference Tournament for the first time, Wallace head volleyball coach April Harper said this year’s team will have to work to build up experience.

“This year with our girls we have 95 percent new recruitment,” Harper said. “All of our sophomores last year got scholarship offers to four-year schools and we’re excited about that, so we’re really starting fresh this year with a new squad and we only have three sophomores on the team this year.”

While the Lady Patriots work to get their younger players ready for college volleyball, Harper said one of the overall goals for the team is to improve its play defensively.

“Our goal is to educate the young ladies about the rules of the court and become a better defensive team this year,” Harper said. “We take it day by day, but, because we have girls coming from all over the state of Alabama, the knowledge level is different. In the first couple of weeks, we need to get them in shape. They haven’t been on the court probably since October or November and we’re just trying to get them in some shape so they’re able to do what we ask them to do.”

Harper said the program has continued to improve and find success due to the support it receives.

“I just want to thank the [Wallace] president, Dr. James Mitchell, for his ongoing support,” Harper said. “The faculty here at Wallace has been great and the coaching staff. They always do a good job of supporting us and everybody is working pretty well together.”

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