Today we expanded our group defending to the real playing field of 11 vs. 11. After starting the training with more 5 vs. 3 and some 7 vs. 7, we scrimmaged on a full-size field to apply what we had learned from our smaller-sided games. We were so excited to finally play a full game that we basically ran ourselves to the ground, sliding and tackling whenever we could.
Jerry either wanted to reward us for our hard work, or he realized that our bodies needed the rest, so he gave us the afternoon off. After lunch, we all headed out to Coronado Island and headed toward the rising waves of the ocean. Jerry told us that we all must stay in the ocean for a minimum of thirty minutes to help our legs recover. While at Santa Barbara, Anna and I swam out to a buoy far from shore, so this time, since there were no buoys, we swam and swam with no apparent end. Anna and I were accompanied by some teammates at various times who wanted a change from staying near shore. Most of the team was standing, allowing the waves to just reach their waists. While some of us were treading water far away from shore, someone mentioned the fact that there was a shark attack recently in the area. This isn't the best thing to be thinking about as slimy pieces of seaweed brush your leg and could possibly be mistaken for the fin of a large shark. After thirty minutes of swimming the majority of the team got out and basked in the sun on some large rocks near the shore. Others of us stayed in to try to catch some of the larger waves and body surf... a few mouths full of salt water later, I decided that body surfing wasn't really my thing.
After dinner, the 27 of us loaded up the bus and headed to downtown San Diego to hang out at Aly Wagner's apartment. The National Team was also training at the Olympic Training Center, so she invited us over to see her place and relax. We had a great time and Chardi actually ended up 'stealing' the head from the new 'Aly Wagner Bobble-Head Doll.' It doesn't really look like Aly, but it's hilarious just the same. Our trip to San Diego was a huge success in terms of both team camaraderie as well as preparation for the season. We have a week left of training before our UCLA game and there is no doubt that we are going to be well prepared. We're currently ranked number one in various polls, thus making larger the target on our back from other teams to beat us. We will live up to the expectations... GO BRONCOS!!!
- Micaela #5