Spirit, Cooper kick-start their 2nd NPSL season


The Spirit will open its training camp today at Du Burns Arena in preparation for its second National Professional Soccer League season.

Coach Kenny Cooper will conduct two-a-day practices for three weeks. The Spirit's only home exhibition game is Oct. 15 at 7:35 p.m. against the Harrisburg Heat at the Baltimore Arena.

The Spirit's principal off-season acquisition, forward Paul Wright, received permission from Cooper to report late, on Oct. 12 or Oct. 13. Wright is playing for the Los Angeles Salsa in the outdoor American Professional Soccer League.

The Spirit will open its 40-game regular season Oct. 29 against the Chicago Power at the Arena. The club won the NPSL's American Division regular-season title last season, but was eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by Harrisburg.

The NPSL is down to 12 teams now that the Denver Thunder has folded. For balance, the Detroit Rockers were switched from the American to the National Division, creating two six-team divisions.

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