PRACTICE 13 (Transition)

With stick skills strengthening at this point in the season, this practice will introduce a great transition drill.

First 5 Minutes (Review)

Bring all of the players and coaches together. Begin the practice by reiterating what was conveyed at the end of the last practice. Assess the progress made toward the goals for your season. Explain the plan for this practice. Address any questions the players may have.

Next 5 Minutes (Warm-up)

Divide the players into several lines on the midfield line facing one of the restraining lines. Go through repetitions of the following between the mid line and the restraining line: 50 percent run with high knees, butt kicks (lifting the legs up high in the back), side shuffle, running backwards; then 75 percent run; and 100 percent run.

During the warm-up, pull the goalies aside and have them work with one or two of the coaches.

Next 15 Minutes (Stick Skills)

Work contact drills as previously performed:

Line Drills

Box Drill

Next 2 Minutes (Water Break)

Keep your players hydrated with a water break. But have them hustle back to the field. You can consider having this break during Stick Skills.

Next 10 Minutes (Shooting Drills)

Two-Line Pass and Shoot: Divide the players into two separate lines facing each other. The lines should be about 15 yards apart – one on each side of the cage about 10 yards above the goal line. The players at the front of one line will cut toward the other line. The first player in the other line has a ball and passes to the cutting player. The cutting player catches the ball and shoots an inside shot on the run. Then the player who made the pass cuts toward the other line and receives a pass from the first player in line and shoots. The drill continues until all of the balls are in the net. Then have the players switch lines and do the drill again.

Next 20 Minutes (Odd-Man Drill)

Fastbreak Drill: The 4-on-3 fastbreak is one of the most common odd-man situations in lacrosse and a great situation for drills. First explain to the players what a fastbreak is and how it occurs (a midfielder breaks down with the ball in transition and has a 4-on-3 with the attackmen). Then take the opportunity to explain the keys to any odd-man situation.

Demonstrate how the players should line up for this drill. The three attackmen should be in a 'L' shape with two players slightly above the goal line and the point player near the restraining line on the opposite side of the field from the approaching midfielder. Explain and walk through the different passes that the players can/should make to defeat the three defenders. Identify the passes that require the defense to slide from the covered attackmen and which ones do not. After explaining how to run the fastbreak from an offensive standpoint, explain to the players how to play the fastbreak defensively. This is a great opportunity to explain the concept of 'sliding' to the defense as the ball is moved by the offense.

To run a fastbreak drill, have two lines of midfielders halfway between the restraining line and the midfield line. Also, have three attackmen and three defensemen set up in the 'L' inside the restraining box. The coach makes a pass to the first player in one of the midfield lines and the drill starts. Have the players play through the 4-on-3 until someone scores or until the coach blows the whistle. Then the coach starts the drill off again with a midfielder from the other line. Exchange players frequently in the different positions so that everyone has a chance to try the positions.

Next 2 Minutes (Water Break)

Keep your players hydrated with a water break. But have them hustle back to the field.

Next 15 Minutes (Scrimmage)

Review action from prior scrimmages and/or games. Talk to the players about skills that were done well and others that will help the players develop and understand the team game.

Then divide the players into two teams at each position. Let the players play in a controlled scrimmage setting. There will be a lot of different circumstances to teach as the scrimmage progresses, but it will be a lot of fun for both the players and coach. Now that you have introduced the Fastbreak Drill, if there are any penalties during the scrimmage, award the team that was fouled a fastbreak.

Right before the end of practice, blow the whistle and tell all the players to enter the game. Let them enjoy the game for one minute as it was originally played – it is a fun twist for the young players.

Ending Practice

In your team huddle, review what was learned and congratulate the players for their hard work. Also, establish the next practice time (or game time) with the players and parents, and follow up with an email.