Disclaimer: I love lax.
After some informative comments on our Pocket 34 post, I decided to give this thing a second look. I glanced at the Lacrosse Forums stringing section, but then thought better of it. I’ve seen enough pictures of variations of the Pocket 34 now to give my own version a go. Ripping someone else off is fine, but I wasn’t feeling it. And it’s always more fun to figure things out yourself. I tried to figure out the keys to what the stringing did to the mesh and the pocket overall and then tried to recreate those effects using knots I am more familiar with. In the end, my pocket worked out really well, but it’s certainly no Pocket 34. That much is certain.
I started out with the top string and from every picture I’ve seen, the key is to align the mesh as tightly as possible to the scoop. This stringing style was evidently developed around the Warrior Evolution and since I was using a Gait Torque, I had to make some adjustments. I ended up going with a variation of Anthony Kelly’s top string except I used a 9 diamond top, whereas A-Train used a 10 diamond top layer.
The top of the sidewalls need to be pretty tight. You don’t have to go over the top, but definitely make sure there isn’t a high bag in your mesh. The key to the stick is right in the middle of the sidewalls. This is where the legendary knot comes into play. Like I said, I didn’t scour the LF to find the exact knot but I focused on the principle behind it, and that is to pull the mesh into a natural V that your shooters will eventually overlap. The “pull” on the mesh only needs to be slight, but it should be just noticeable. This is creating the channel for the ball to sit in.
The rest of the mesh needs to be secured tightly to the plastic and while you don’t want it to bunch, make sure to use every hole and that you have enough mesh grouped in that area of the stick to create the bottom of your pocket. The tie off at the bottom is simple with a wide loop. I went through 8 of 10 holes.
In the Pocket 34, the lower V goes across 3 mesh holes and then turns toward the sidewall. This is because the Pocket 34, like Anthony Kelly, uses a 10 diamond top for their mesh. I still like my 9 and it is why my lower V is only 2 mesh holes wide before turning. I find the level of the lower V by using the following mesh hole count from the top: gap, nylon, nylon, gap, upper V, gap, Lower V. I do not count the mesh row attached to the scoop since it is secured so tightly to the plastic. My upper V is 4 mesh holes wide and the pocket 34 is 5 mesh holes wide.
The two nylon shooters are placed together one row below the top of the mesh. Ideally, your mesh channel peaks around the lower nylon shooter. Where the nylon falls is more an issue of personal preference though in my opinion. For more whip, lower it and for less, move it higher. I didn’t really try to string the Pocket 34. I didn’t even have the right head! But I applied the principles that the pocket employs and came out with a great mesh pocket. I can only imagine what a perfect version of this stringing style is like… maybe I’ll try that next. I’ll definitely need help.
About the Author: Connor is a life-long lacrosse player who doesn’t know when to give up on the game. He played and coached at Wesleyan University and now plays for the Southampton LC in NYC. Connor lives with his fiance in Brooklyn and thanks her for allowing him to keep the dream alive.
Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.