The University of Tulsa volleyball team kicked off the 2014 campaign with their first practice of the season Saturday morning in the Mabee Gymnasium.


First year TU Head Coach Ryan Wills was ready to finally get back on the court and begin practicing.


“The beginning of the season is always one of those times of the year that everyone loves,” said Wills. “You look forward to it since the end of last season. Everyone just wants to be here.”


However, he does not want the excitement to reduce anytime soon.


“The key is, as we work a little bit further into the season, we need to keep that excitement and keep that will to be around one another. We need to create a culture where we enjoy one another and we care about one another so that when we move further into the season, when things get tough, we can rely on one another as a team,” Wills said.


Even after just one practice, Wills saw improvement from his team early on.


“We actually had some growth with our communication,” Wills said. “That was the biggest thing I took from today’s practice. We started off a little quiet because we didn’t know each other, then as it picked up we started over communicating, which was a goal by the end of practice.”


After an eight-month layoff since the end of last season, the team’s focus was getting in as much touches of the ball in various drills throughout the practice.


“We are just trying to get into a rhythm,” said Wills. “We haven’t touched the ball as much as if we were in the middle of the season, so we are making sure that we are working through all of our skills, getting into a rhythm with our timing and getting the feel of the ball back.”