A Lacrosse Weekend 3.16.19


Welcome to "A Lacrosse Weekend" my weekly compilation of thoughts, ideas, stories, myths, truths about the great game of lacrosse. I hope you find it enjoyable.

Virtual Lacrosse Summit

The week of April 15th we will conduct the second of four Virtual Lacrosse Summits we will hold this year.  Stay tuned on more details, but you can sign up here:


Here are a few of the speakers:

  • Joe Spallina, Stony Brook Women's Lacrosse
  • Brodie Merrill, NLL/MLL/PLL Defender, arguably top 2-3 all time defensemen, founder Hill Academy
  • Greg Gurenlian, The G.O.A.T in the world of face-offs!
  • Sean Allen, Philadelphia Wings on teaching box lacrosse
  • Spencer Ford, Atlanta Blaze, MLL Assist record holder, "Hang up offense"
  • Rick Beardsley, HOF defenseman, "Making Defenders Great Again"

Stay tuned for more info!  This is going to be awesome!  Feel free to email me if you have ideas on topics you'd like to hear about!

Phi-Lacrosse-ophy Podcast with Matt Hasselbeck

I met Matt last summer up in Niagara on the Lake, Ontario when he brought his daughters up to play box lacrosse for the St. Catharines Athletics.  Matt is a great guy who LOVES to talk football and is an amazing story teller and that's exactly what we do on this podcast.  Matt also loves lacrosse and while the former QB provides amazing insights into NFL football, the conversation constantly reverts back to lacrosse in a really cool and educational way.  I think you'll love this podcast!

 One really interesting segment of the podcast was the topic of the "Trip Move" invented by PLL Chaos Head Coach Andy Towers.  We talk about how great it would be if NFL receivers learned this move!  Matt explains what defensive coverage this would work best with!

Here's a video on what trip move actually looks like!

Coaching Youth Lacrosse

JM3 has created a Coaches Training Program  for high school and youth lacrosse coaches that is a totally new way  of looking at youth athlete development.  The JM3 Model will teach you how to develop world class skill and IQ for your team no matter what your level of experience is!   In order to be a great coach you need to understand these key concepts:

Tempo and Reps: development in many ways is a math equation.  If my players get 2x more passes, shots, scoops, dodges, in my practice than your players get in your practice, my player will get better at those skills 2x faster.  

A great man, Daniel L. Ritchie, former Chancellor at the University of Denver once told me, "Jamie, you get what you measure."  This is true in coaching too!  Do these two things: 1,  Count your reps and  2,  Time how long you spend talking, explaining, mobilizing.

Here is a video that will teach you how to scale your reps while introducing all the skills to youth lacrosse players 1st-4th grade! 

 Environment does the teaching: the environment is the drill, the game, the rules, the equipment, the tempo, the goal size.  The coach is a part of the environment and actually creates the environment and manages the environment.  

Box lacrosse is the ultimate example of an effective environment.   

  • Small nets = players must get their sticks to the middle to score
  • Small nets = learn to be a deceptive shooter
  • Boards & glass = ball stays in play & more reps
  • Shot clock = play faster,
  • No long poles = everyone develops, everyone is a threat,
  • Box is smaller sided 5v5 versus field lacrosse 10v10
  • Less space = create space by bringing players together (2man game)
  • It is easier to get to the middle off the ball than with the ball

Truth: The same coach with the same players will be more effective in box lacrosse than in field lacrosse.

Watch this video of a really cool 3v3 drill filmed in Coquitlam, BC with a bunch of midget age (15-16) players.  This is a 3v3 plus a feeder drill that allows the players to play 3v3 where they pass, pick, cut and dodge , or they can throw the ball to the feeder and then their 3v3 turns into off the ball cutting, cycling, and picking.    

Leveraging the power of the "Natural Side":  Putting lefty's on the right and righty's on the left (looking at the cage) is an accelerator of skill.  When a right handed midfielder dodges from out top, he runs to his strong hand and loses angle and options with every step.   When a right handed player dodges from his Natural Side wing, he can dodge left or right and still gain angle and still get his right hand!  The moves become intuitive: rockers, spin moves, face dodges, face dodge roll backs, split dodge roll backs, etc.

Truth: The lefty attackman is an expert at getting his left!  All the opposing coaches and fans yell, "He's all left!" yet he always gets his left.  He can split dodge underneath to his right, and get his left.  If you stop his under move, he'll roll back topside, to his left.  If you stop that he'll "Z" dodge or pop out and have new angles to the topside, again for his left and if you stop that, he'll inside roll you and get his left. 

Here's a video of Wind up 1v1's showing a repertoire of  moves on the natural side.  


Coaching High School Lacrosse

This past week in the Coaches Training Program, I presented in a webinar on the Penn State offense.  I have been admiring this offense for a few years and I finally got a bunch of game films together and took a deep dive!  There are SO man intricacies, and cool nuances that we covered last Thursday night, but here are the basics:

  • 141 Wing dodge with a:
  • Mirror / picker
  • Hang up guy at X
  • Backside exchange
  • Fade 

I love the versatility of this offense and the way it allows your players to play to their strengths.  With picks and mirrors and a steady dose of Big-Little action behind, the Penn State offense runs around 75% 2man games.

Here is a video of Penn State vs Cornell from last season that gives you an idea:

The Coaches Training Program is a new opportunity to achieve results like you've always dreamed of!  The impact it has had on current subscribers has been awesome!  Check out this video testimonial from Billy Mckinney, who is the head coach at Germantown Academy in Philly and who runs HHH Lacrosse, one of the top clubs in the nation:


Have a great weekend!


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