- What is "HALAX"?
HALAX stands for "Hillsborough County Lacrosse Alliance" and is the organization working with Hillsborough County Public Schools to manage the transition of high school lacrosse from a club sport to an FHSAA-sanctioned sport beginning with the 2014 spring season. HALAX is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. The all-volunteer board is composed of lacrosse parents and community members who seek to grow the game of lacrosse in Hillsborough County by providing the opportunity for high school athletes to play lacrosse as a school sport.
- What are the basics of the HALAX agreement?
The agreement between HALAX and the school board provides for a 3-year pilot program to offer lacrosse at ten high schools beginning in 2014. Additional schools may be added during that time frame provided they meet approved requirements. Lacrosse will be offered as a “pay-to-play” sport. The contract is currently undergoing renewal with the school board.
- Which high schools are included?
In 2014, ten high schools were included in the pilot program's inaugural year - Alonso, Durant, Freedom, Jefferson, Newsome, Plant, Robinson, Steinbrenner, Tampa Bay Tech, and Wharton. Bloomingdale & Sickles were added in 2015 for a total of twelve schools.
- Are there boys and girls teams at each school?
Each school has a girls Varsity team and a boys Varsity team. There are no JV teams.
- What is “pay-to-play”?
Those players selected for their school's varsity team will pay a registration fee to HALAX to play lacrosse. The fee is determined by the actual cost to provide lacrosse as a sanctioned school sport. HALAX is covering the costs of goals, balls, referees, uniforms, equipment, field maintenance, coaching stipends, some transportation, and other costs for 24 teams (men’s and women’s teams at 12 schools). HALAX is continually fundraising and applying for grants to help make the cost to play as reasonable as possible. The registration fee was $390 per player in 2014, $330 in 2015, and $320 in 2016. The 2017 registration fee will be $310.
- When is the lacrosse season?
Lacrosse is a spring sport and per FHSAA guidelines, the first date for practice/tryouts can be no sooner than January 16, 2017, with the first regular season game no sooner than February 6, 2017. The last date for regular season games is April 1, 2017 followed by playoffs. Season schedules are currently being finalized. Please check with your school for tryout/practice dates.
- What equipment will be provided to players through HALAX?
Certain equipment will be loaned to players for use during the season. Players will be required to return the gear to the school at the end of the season or if they should leave the team for any reason. Girls will be provided uniforms, eyewear, and headgear. Boys will be provided uniforms, helmets, and shoulder pads. Goalie gear will be provided for all teams and will include helmet, throat guard, chest protector, goalie stick, and gloves. Girls’ goalie gear will also include goalie pants and shin guards. Players must wear the issued helmets. They are not allowed to wear any other helmets. Jefferson & TBT players will be provided all of the above-listed equipment plus complete sticks, gloves, and elbow pads through generous grants from US Lacrosse.
- What equipment will players need to provide for themselves?
Girls will need to provide their own complete stick, cleats, and socks. Boys will need to provide their own complete stick, cleats, socks, gloves, and elbow pads.
- What will team uniforms be like?
Uniforms have been designed to meet all national and county uniform guidelines. Girls’ uniforms will include a skirt, compression shorts, a home jersey, and an away jersey. Boys’ uniforms will include shorts, a home jersey, and an away jersey. Each player will also receive one practice pinnie. All uniform pieces, except practice pinnies and girls’ compression shorts, must be returned at the end of the season or if the player leaves the team for any reason.
- What is required in order to try out for Varsity lacrosse?
Students must meet all district & school eligibility requirements, complete their school’s athletic packet, and buy the district-required athletic insurance in order to try out for Varsity lacrosse. The packets must be submitted per the school’s requirements. Please check with your school for the date these packets are due in order to be eligible to try out for lacrosse.
- Will players be required to be US Lacrosse members?
All players who are selected for Varsity teams will be required to hold a valid US Lacrosse membership. The cost is $35 per player payable to US Lacrosse. Memberships are valid for one year.
- How is the fundraising effort going?
Together, we’ve raised over $200,000 through donations from high school lacrosse clubs, generous donors, and sponsors. Fundraisers have included bowl-a-thons, car washes, yard sales, golf tournaments, & more. In addition, we’ve received generous grants from US Lacrosse. Current fundraising efforts benefit student-athletes who could not otherwise afford to play. The fundraising is going well, but we still have work to do.
- How can I help?
Thank you for asking! There are many ways you can help. We encourage you to get involved with HALAX. It’s a great group, and we are currently seeking new volunteers to serve on our board of directors. In addition, if you haven’t had a chance to donate to HALAX yet, please consider doing so. And if you know of a company or individual who might like to help out with a sponsorship, please help us make that connection. All donations are tax deductible. Contact us via email at
for further information or to help out with any of the above. To stay informed, please join our e-mail list at www.halax.org, follow us on Twitter @HalaxInfo, and like us on Facebook at HALAX Lacrosse.