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Tips for the Attack

Positioning

  • Make your defenseman play you and you alone every second you are in the game. Keep moving all the time so that he must center his attention on you and not be in position to help out his fellow defensemen.
  • If an attackman is being ridden hard and can't dodge or get away - the nearest man on each side goes to help him.
  • Never try to force in, with the ball or by a pass if the defense is drawn in. Pull them out first.
  • Never stand so close together that one man can cover two attack men.
  • Always keep your field balanced in order that you stay in better position to back up, and give your teammates space to work in.
  • Always remember that teamwork is the key to a good attack.

Passing/Catching/Feeding

  • In moving the ball around the circle, make all passes sharp, short, and to the outside, away from the defense man.
  • Make feed passes hard.
  • All feed passes must be thrown directly overhand or directly underhand - not sidearm.
  • Always move to meet every pass, and circle away from your defenseman.
  • Take pains to make every pass a good one.
  • Never make a pass to a man who is covered just to get rid of the ball.
  • After receiving a pass, as the ball moves around the outside, look first at the man who threw you the ball to see what he is doing, then at the crease.
  • If you receive a pass after cutting and haven't got a good shot, hold onto the ball.

Possession

  • When you have the ball, never stand still - keep moving all the time - if necessary run backwards and forwards - but keep moving. When you are ready to make a pass, take one step back quickly and move.
  • When you have the ball, be constantly faking passes - keep your defense man's stick moving.
  • When in possession of ball, make the defenseman play your stick - watch his stick - the position of it will determine the direction of your feed and the type of dodge you might try.

Shooting

There are several different types. Here are a few tips for each one!

  • If you have the time and room:
  • Set a good base with your legs.
  • Keep your hands near the bottom of your handle about 12 inches apart.
  • Make sure your hands and elbows are high, and away from your body.
  • Turn your shoulders and hips and push off with your legs — technique is very important.
  • On the Run:
  • Hardest skill to learn in lacrosse! Work on all of the above skills and practice doing them full speed.
  • Turn your hips and uncork your body like a golfer!
  • Inside/Crease Shooting:
  • For extra control, keep your hands 12 inches apart, but slide them up about 10 inches from your butt end.
  • Shoot high to low and off the goalies hip.
  • Accuracy of shot is more important than speed in close.
  • Use more wrist action in close.
  • Make fakes with your shoulders rather than stick!
  • On all long shots, a man must be on the crease.
  • On every screen shot the crease man should check-up on the defenseman's stick, and immediately face the goalie, so that he is ready to bat in a rebound.
  • Place all shots, usually for a far corner, and shoot hard. When within five yards of the goal, the shot should be for a top corner.
  • Always be in position to back up shots and feeds. When a cut is made, or a shot is taken, the whole attack must play a part, moving to be in a position to backup a pass or a shot. Control the ball!
  • Shoot plenty, but only if you feel you have a good shot.
  • Always have one, preferably two, men behind the goal to back up shots.

Ground Balls

  • When there is a loose ball on the ground, go after it fast and hard, you must have the ball!
  • After picking up a loose ball, turn and face the crease immediately. If nobody is open, move in fast until you are picked up.

Stick Protection

  • Keep your elbow locked in on your stick-carrying arm while cradling mostly with your wrist.
  • Your elbow should stay within 4 inches of your ribs. Don't swing your arm!
  • Your free arm should be kept in a comfortable protective position.
  • Try not to run on the same line or plane. Run in and out.
  • Keep your head up!!!!!!

Dodging

  • Don't dodge with the intention of blowing by your defender. Your thought should be to make a move to get your hands free for a pass or shot, if only for a second or two.
  • Execute all of your moves at FULL SPEED. If you go 100%, it's unbelievable how much harder you are to cover.
  • Learn to play lefty and righty equally as well. Regardless of how good you are at a certain dodge, if you go the same way every time your defenseman will recognize this and you'll never get a step.
  • Don't dodge if there is an open man. Don't hold the ball long unless you are planning a dodge. Keep it moving with quick, short passes.
  • Never try to dodge when men are in position to back up.
  • Every man on the attack should try at least two dodges every game. Learn at least three different types of dodges.

Cutting

  • Time your cuts, don't cut if the man with the ball is not watching or not in position to pass.
  • Make full cuts - go through and out - don't cut at half speed or hang around the crease after your cut.
  • Zig your cuts, fake left - go right, fake right - go left. Don't always run at the same speed, change of pace is a very effective method of getting open.

Clearing

  • After the ball has been cleared, if you have a wide open opportunity to dodge, do it, or if you are sure a man is open, pass to him, otherwise settle the ball down and let your attack get set up. Remember, after a clear the wimpy midfielders will need time to catch their breath. Middies rest on offense, not defense.
  • Control The Ball!

Riding the Ball

  • When you lose the ball, ride it. The close attack must ride and ride hard until the ball is past midfield.
  • Don't rush at a man when riding - particularly behind the goal. Force him to pass - force him in the direction where there is help. Talk all the time and run hard. The success of an attack depends on their riding ability and their desire to have the ball.
  • Don't feel your job is done as an attackman when the goalie makes a save — ride hard until the ball is cleared through the midfield line.
  • Be in shape
  • Know how to break down and play "defense"
  • Use the sideline to your advantage — force the clearing player in that direction
  • Don't go for the clearing player's stick head — check his hands
  • Be relentless!!!


Want to take the WHIP out of your pocket?

  • Tighten the pocket a little. It may be just too deep to release normally. Tighten the sidewalls first, if that doesn't work tighten the leathers.
  • Loosen the shooting strings. If they are too tight your stick will hook every time.
  • Try adding a third or fourth throw string.

Stringing: Mesh vs. Traditional

  • Benefits of each: Mesh: Quick hard release; very consistent; easy to maintain; performs well in bad weather. Traditional: Great "hold" of the ball; hard shots, tougher maintenance (broken strings etc.)
  • The "best" for you is the one that you feel the most confident with. Give both styles a chance before you make a final decision.
For more great tips, go to www.laxtips.com