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 Game Reads: No Switch The "D" Goes Under
One of the most important parts of great two man game is understanding how the defense is playing you and taking advantage of it. The defense can switch, stay or double and if they stay, they can go under or over the pick. Today we will focus on what to do if the defense goes under the pick on the wing.
Pick placement: it is incredibly important that the picker reads how the on ball defender is playing the ball and sets the pick appropriately. First the picker wants to set the pick about 3 1/2 yards away from the defender so there is time to adjust the pick without setting a moving pick (in men's lacrosse) and without setting a Blind Pick (women's lacrosse). This cushion of space allows the picker time to adjust and force the defender who is going under the pick to go farther under the pick.
When the defender goes under a pick on the wing, look to shoot.
One important option when the defense is going under a pick but the dodger is just outside of shooting range, is to learn how to reset the pick a little bit closer to the middle opening up a shot or forcing the defender to push out and go over the pick at the last second.
Just like the picker, the dodger must read how the defender is playing the pick. Are they pushing out or are they backing off and turning their head to see the pick in order to get under it? Defenders are very susceptible to getting beat on a Pick Refusal when they turn their head to find the pick and try to beat the dodger to the other side of the pick. When the defender turns their head, the dodger can cut back and not use the pick, often times cleanly getting to the net.
The dodger should look to use hesitations and hitches when the defender goes under the pick. Don't let the defender cleanly race you to the other side of the pick! By hesitating and hitching you can influence the defender to reach, poke, or try to get over the pick. Also, by hesitating, you give the picker more time to adjust the pick.
Watch the drill below, called 1v1 + Picker where JM3 Athletes are learning how to read and influence the defender in a 2man game / no switch scenario.
Things to look for in this drill:
If you want to see an epic example of using hitches when a defender is going under a pick watch the clip below of Austin Staats! When Audi's man falls (After he stomps on his foot lol) there is one defender to play Staats with a picker. The way Staats influences the defender, making him reach and poke on one side of the pick while he attacked the other was sick, is masterful. The best part was the way he kept hitching once he attacked the far side of the pick! You will notice in the first clip from the 1v1 + Picker Drill, the dodger does the same type of Multi Hitch and it was insane! (Don't mind the casual Around The World Finish!)
Here's an example in a PLL game where, if the picker had adjusted his pick as Zed Williams was reading that his man was going under, Zed probably would have had a hands free wing shot or his defender would have had to push out and go over the pick at the last moment, mostly likely causing a clean look to the passer.
In women's lacrosse there is no difference in the reads.
Watch the clips from ThunderRIdge HS below where the defense was trying to go under picks and the dodgers slowed down to make it an impossible angle to defend.
You can google or search YouTube all you want and will not find hundreds and hundreds of hours of lacrosse instruction from top coaches and pros.
As Coaches we want to bring our players and coaches the most current and most effective skills and strategies in the game.
A lot of kids are working hard, but few are actually getting better at the game itself.
Read this article by Raymond Verhejein, a world renowned soccer coach: Isolated Technique Training Slows Down Development.
Most of the world is banging out #Reps on the bounce back, #Reps shooting balls on empty nets, #Reps dodging cones. #Reps in the speed ladder while cradling at the same time. While there is value in sharpening skills, these #Reps won't actually make you better at playing the game.
In quarantine with my three kids, I created The Backyard Curriculum which is my greatest creation for player development. My kids and JM3 Athletes need to ACTUALLY get better at the game of lacrosse which means: We have to dodge people; Shoot on humans; Play defense versus live dodges; Manipulate defenders in 2man games on and off ball, etc.
I would say the best way to characterize The Backyard Curriculum is it teaches a "Feel" for the game.
Box Lacrosse 3man Side Double Down
Thanks to Jake "Jumbo" Elliott for putting together this incredible breakdown of box lacrosse concepts. The 3man Double Down is a great look where two players pick or seal for the ball creating a ton of space for the dodger! These are exactly the types of 3man side actions that we will see more predominantly in field lacrosse as box continues to permeate the field lacrosse game.
A question many people have is when do I pick and when do I seal? The simple answer is, and you'll see it in the video, when the defense is sloughed in, look to seal them in even more. If you can create the outside shot option with a seal and the defense has to push out to play it, your picks / slips will then be open.
Learning Box Lacrosse
I'm excited to announce that I will be teaming up with long time box lacrosse coach, Sean Allen to provide box lacrosse training opportunities during the course of the fall and winter for players, teams and programs that are interested in leaning authentic box lacrosse. If you look at the video below, you will see a mix of boys and girls from 2019 when we were up in Niagara On The Lake, ON.
This 3v3 + Feeder drill is one of the best to learn 2man game, learn concepts like "Double Downs" from the video above !
Your kids need to play box lacrosse. Here are three options to bring it to them:
1. Do it yourself: with all the info I put in my blogs, you should be able to put together a great environment!
2. Work with JM3 Box Training Remote Coaching: Simply put, we will do zoom calls with coaches and players to help establish and optimize training environment. Remote coaching has been wildly successful across the many programs I've worked with in DI Men's and Women's Lacrosse, High School Men's and Women's lacrosse and youth.
3. JM3 Box Training Workshops: Here, we will work with your program to find a weekend that works for your players and your coaching staff to jump start a great box lacrosse training experience. The truth is, creating the excitement and buzz around your training is huge! Programs can supplement in person workshops with the Remote Coaching to sustain a high level of play.
Email me at [email protected] if you have interest in finding out more about the JM3 Box Training opportunities.
If you want to learn more about college lacrosse recruiting, check. out the JM3 Recruiting Portal. I have compiled three years worth of blog posts, interviews, webinars, videos and podcasts to create a source for great recruiting information.
I have done podcasts with dozens of DI men's and women's coaches and have edited out the excerpts on recruiting. Find out what Lars Tiffany is looking for in a player. Understand how Kelly Amonte-HIller thinks about recruiting character!
One of the exciting things about this product is that I will continually add new and updated content as I produce it!
Get ready for your upcoming season with the power of all the premium content brought to you by Jamie Munro and hours and hours of instruction from other top coaches and pros. Now is the time to get prepared for you greatest season yet. Check out all the great content in our store. www.jm3sports.com/store
Have a great weekend!