Sunday, May 13, 2007

at Ballston Spa

The weather was excellent.

We got to the field early for once (usually we get 15 minutes to warm up at away games -- for this game we got about 45 minutes).

The field was short (goal to goal) by 14 yards. That's a huge advantage for a team like ours (speed is our main asset).

We had refs who actually knew what they were doing.

Warm ups went well. I said little, yet I saw hand switching, ground balls, and over-the-shoulder passes being practiced. The girls are starting to self-organize. This is good.

I was about to start writing the list of people who scored, but here's what I'm happier about: B Spa only scored 6 goals this game. They scored 9 last time we played them -- that's a 33% improvement. Our defense did a great job of keeping a couple girls who are twice as big as ME from ever getting inside the 8m arc with the ball. That's impressive. Carolyn's saves won her Player of the Game. Carolyn and Cary's collective work in the goal earned them Weekly Captains status for this week.

Intro to this section (before I get to the positive stuff): Early in the game, when it became apparent that we would do a lot of scoring, a few people started getting ball-hoggish. It looked to me like they were playing for stats. Not acceptable. Our goal is excellent lacrosse, no matter what the score is. That means: if a player is open, you pass; if someone needs a pic, you set it; if the ball can be passed up the field (instead of run), you pass it; you play defense with your feet first and stick second; play defense as hard as you play offense (for wings and center).

The good news: 10 different players scored (you can check the stats page for details). Their goalie was not strong, but I saw many good shots and a lot of good hard running. I would, however, like to see more assists. We can be a good team simply because we have very good athletes, but we can only be a great team if our very good athletes work together a little bit more, especially on the attack.

Ground-ball pick ups still need a lot of work.

Courtney, however, had several very nice one-handed pick ups that started fast breaks. I'm not sure this technique will work against faster teams, but against a slow team, use it.

We were offsides twice. If the refs had seen this (they should have -- the second time TWO girls were offsides) we would have lost 2 goals.

I remember watching Courtney run down the middle of a wide open 8m arc, shoot, and score. Apparently almost all of our attackers set pics and this opened up the middle for Courtney (I didn't see this -- Mackenzie told me). Nice.

OK -- Go thank your mothers for driving you to and from lacrosse practice! (it's Mother's Day)