Each month Shooters Lacrosse will post tips on become a better lacrosse player. These tips will be a good way to help you fully understand the roll of being an overall Lacrosse player.
Offense -Playing without the Ball
The majority of the game is played without the ball. Therefore as an offensive player, you need to understand your position on the field and what you need to do in relation to where the ball is. There are some simple rules to follow regardless of your own offensive system.
First, if the man with the ball comes towards you, clear through. Next, if the man with the ball goes away from you, follow the ball.
As you clear through, never lose sight of the ball. You never know when your defender will leave you or whether you can break free and get open. Always have your stick in your upfield hand and be looking to make a play and be a scorer.
By following your teammate, you also provide an outlet for a player who may get double-teamed, is fatigued, or simply needs an outlet.
When adjacent to the ball carrier, your job is to clear through. But if your defender decides to leave you and double team the ball, you can also execute a fish hook move where you put on the brakes, stop, and come back to the ball with the stick in your upfield hand.
Some simple tips to remember:
• Watch your defenseman's head as he turns to watch the ball
• Make sure you're making eye contact and working with your teammate who's carrying the ball
• As soon as your defender turns to look at the ball, cut backdoor for a quick pass to the goal
Defense - Playing off ball.
Off-Ball defense is identical to defensive concepts in basketball. When you are not covering the ball, you want to stay in between your man and the net. This allows you to stay in a position to help your teammates out but also not leaving too much room, so that you can recover back to your man once he receives the ball again. A good distance to use is one or two stick lengths away from the player you are covering. Finally, when the ball is moving around and your offensive player does not have the ball, you will want to keep your head on a swivel. Keeping your head on a swivel and opening your hips to the ball allows you to view your offensive player and the current player with the ball. Remember that you are working as a unit, so the player you are covering is important but the ball carrier is just as important.