EAGAN, Minn. (WCCO) — A new era in Minnesota sports has begun. Monday marked the first practice for the Minnesota Aurora FC, the state’s new women’s pre-professional soccer team.
The team is community-owned with more than 3,000 stakeholders.
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The players took to the field running through some drills and a scrimmage to get a feel for how to play together as a new team.
Roughly 70% of the team reported for the first day of practice as others are still finishing up final exams.
The youngest player is just 16 years old and already committed to play Division I soccer.
Some players are still in college and others have already graduated.
The dream depends on the player. Some see this as an opportunity to continue playing a sport they’ve played and love for years while others are hoping to make it to the next level and play professional soccer.
No matter where they are in their journey, they say playing for a team that is women-led and community-owned is special.
“It means more to me because soccer is my sport. I’ve put so many years and time and effort and blood sweat and tears into it and to be able to come out and have such a great fan base and just the whole city supporting it it’s unmatched,” said Sarah Fuller, the team’s goalkeeper. “It’s unlike anything I’ve ever done and I’m very excited for it.”
Fuller played soccer for Vanderbilt University but made history becoming the first woman to play for the Commodore’s football team as a place kicker.
The team consists of roughly half of the players from Minnesota. The rest come from all over the country with a couple of players from South Korea and Japan.
The team is still holding tryouts for the few remaining spots on the team.
The Minnesota Aurora’s franchise opener is against the Green Bay Glory on May 26 at 7 p.m. at TCO stadium.