Welcome to "A Lacrosse Weekend" my weekly compilation of thoughts, ideas, stories, myths, truths, about the great game of lacrosse. I hope you enjoy it!
If you are a men's or women's lacrosse player, coach, or parent, I think you will love the weekly content, videos, and analysis.
2man / 3man Offense
Last week I wrote about the Penn State Offense from 2019 which is the most efficient offense in NCAA DI history. The 2man / 3man offense resembles box lacrosse and is similar to the classic Pairs offense where there are a pair of lefties, a pair of righties and two behind. The advantage of the 2man/3man look over "Pairs" is the defense can't slide or "Spike" off one pipe and rotate across on a second slide because there is only one behind and and that X player can sit on the backside pipe making the defense play 5 on 5 in front of the net.
The challenge of the 2man/3man set is the 3man ball side is harder for the offense from a spacing perspective than a 2man ball side. Further, it is easier for the offense and tougher for the defense to guard an off ball 3man action. It is for that reason most offenses attack ball side from their 2man side and try to create good backside 3man actions.
Here is a great example of Syracuse running a 2man ball side with nice Triple A Ratings combined with a 3man off ball side of great actions! The hard cut to the net opens up the pop!
Here is a great example of Brunswick running a beautiful backside 3man action with the hard curl over the top resulting in the open pop!
Here UNC starts a pairs look then morphs into a 2man / 3man look with a beautiful backside seal on the 3man side.
Here's a great example of Deerfield Academy running a some great 2man ball side and 3man backside actions that both occupy defenders and create open shooters.
In the 2man / 3man offense it is critical to have a plan for the X guy! You can see in the Deerfield clip the x guy is allowing his man to show ball side. The X guy needs to sneak backside; either before the 2man action to remove the help from the 2man side or during the play, baiting the defender to help while the X guy sneaks backside to be open for a one-timer!
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The Deep Mirror Look
One simple way to run a 3man ball side is to have a pick or mirror AND a crease which becomes a Deep Mirror or secondary mirror. You will see many DI teams run this look that UVA has popularized over the past few years. One of the reasons this look has become more common is many defensive coordinators try to avoid sliding off the mirror in "Pairs" sets, which then sets up the opportunity to open up the Deep Mirror or Second Mirror looks.
This is a sneaky and interesting way to create a Deep Mirror on a 3man side! As the defense "Freezes" and zones up the actions the Deep Mirror gets lost in the wash.
Here's another example of a secondary mirror look on a low 2man game pick refusal.
This is an interesting variation where you can see some nice backside actions out of the 3man side as a team slides off the 2nd mirror.
While it is more challenging from a spacing perspective, to attack ball side out of a 3man side, the advantage is in the concept of addition by subtraction. If the defense has to slide from a 2man side to a 3man side it leaves two guarding one (assuming you sneak backside eliminating a defender from helping).
Here, Brian Kelly, Head Coach St. Margarets Lacrosse in Orange County, California runs a sweet 3man secondary mirror with a nifty backside seal.
2man 3man Game Terminologies
If you want to learn more about cutting edge concepts like this you should seriously consider the JM3 Coaches Training Program. There is endless amazing content and it continues to update as the game continues to evolve!
The video below is walk through of one of the coolest sections of the CTP: the 2man 3man game glossary of every look I could find!
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If you are interested in learning more about how to create practices like this, check out the Women's Coaches Training Program. It is an incredible resource with invaluable content for every aspect of the game! You will learn the power of the Constraints Led Approach, Differential Learning (repetition without repetition), Free Play, as over arching teaching models, an endless supply of great drill and game environments, how to construct great team offenses and team defenses and of course all of the special teams of transition, rides/clears, draws etc.
There are membership levels for everyone. Check it out at www.jm3sports.com/ctp
College Lacrosse Recruiting with Florida Assistant Coach Nicole Levy
Learn whet Nicole is looking for on the field! She wants players who don't just make themselves look good, but the unselfish play that demonstrates great IQ like setting a pick, making the pass out of the double team without just looking to get the assist. One of Nicole's biggest pieces of advice is to not even pay attention to who's on the sideline! Be in the moment and focus on playing! Finally, if you want to show a coach is interested, don't just email us, come to our camps!
College Lacrosse Recruiting with Utah Head Coach Drew McMinn
"The Pitch" for Utah is just show up! It's like Denver on steroids with incredible weather, scenery, and activities that enhance the experience beyond the playing field. From a power five conference perspective Utah lacrosse athletes experience the big time resources that very few men's lacrosse schools possess.
Coach McMinn is looking for players who can play transition lacrosse, two way "Dogs" midfielders. The Attack who are great a shooting and finishing and great off ball and generally guys who can play without the ball. Of course there are dodgers, but the efficiency of off ball play is huge. Defensively, they want guys who can pressure and have the stick work to push transition. Coach is looking for the best fit for Utah which has to do with the personal fit and the Utah culture.
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Check out a new YouTube video series from JM3's Mike O'Neil as he runs the Kent Denver Girls program through some amazing drills!
Have a great weekend!