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2010 IMLCA Convention, Day 2

Editor’s note: Grove City College student officers Andrew J. Dymski and Bill Sigmund spent time at the annual Intercollegiate Mens Lacrosse Coaches Association convention over the weekend and provided us with a great recap of the event. Check it out the Day 2 recap below!

Saturday at the 2010 IMLCA Conference in Baltimore, MD

The second day of action at the IMLCA convention was filled with great coaches talking about everything from optimizing Microsoft office to understanding the biomechanical differences between good and great shooters.  It was attended well by coaches from the NCAA, MCLA, and high school level.  The take away theme from the day was optimizing transition opportunities and you accomplish this in practice.

The day opened bright and early with the FCA Lacrosse breakfast with Coach Joe Breschi as the key note speaker.  The morning secession featured Chris Wojcik of Harvard, Ben Shear from Athletic Edge, and JB Clarke and staff from Limestone.  Ryan Danehy, assistant from Dartmouth, spoke about organizational design.  This talk left some of the older coaches in the audience a little confused.  As a coach you should learn to maximize the tools that you have on your computer already, such as excel, outlook, and mail merge.  Standardizing and syncing these tools frees you to spend more time doing what you want to do.

The vendor showing in the exhibit area was missing most of the big brands; no Warrior, no STX, no Brine, and no MaverikHarrow and Cascade did have a booth.  There was a good representation on the jersey front with Under Armour, Pro Look Sports, and several others.

Below are my notes from the secessions I attended.  Hope you can find them helpful.

Advantage Drills to Dominate the Unsettled Situations

Coach Clarke from Limestone

Coach Clarke’s focus throughout the presentation was “practice the unsettled situations”.  His philosophy is “ground ball to goal.”  Take advantage of those split seconds where you have an advantage in the transition game.  It is important to understand that these unsettled transition situations can present themselves at many points on the field.  You have to be ready to notice the opportunity; hustle is a must to accomplish this goal.

The Transition Game

Coach Andy Shay of Yale University

The main point of Coach Shay’s presentation was the need to recognize transition moments, because they are happening all over the field all the time.  The clock is always ticking on these moments, seize them while you can.  Avoid wasted movements that waste time; eliminate all unnecessary actions by the ball carrier.

Violate the transition rules listed below at your own risk.  You can still score if you violate them, but your scoring percentage will increase dramatically if these rules are adhered to with consistency.  Consistent application of these rules will develop instinct.

Transition Rules

A. Offensive Transition Rules and Applications

a) Beat the ball.

b) If you’re not covered, get covered.

c) If you’re covered, move it.  Dodging kills the advantage.

d) Calls: names, “one more”

B. Defensive Transition Tips

a) Make the ball outnumber us: force the offense to make more passes than you have defensemen on the field.

b) Don’t move too early: Don’t attack the ball.

c) No contact outside five yards of the crease.

d) Calls: scrape (hold) and rotate

The Development of the Entire Goalie

Coach Sean Quirk of Endicott College

Coach Quirk broke down the basics of goaltending to a packed room of coaches.  He started with goalie positioning from the ground up: be duck footed to get a start on stepping diagonally, find a happy balance between your body and arm stretched too far and keep the stick on that plane, and limit your movement in the cage.   When the ball is behind the cage, stay in the same position and keep your stick where you would normally hold it.  Maintaining consistent positioning enables the goalie to turn round and be in position for the quick shot from up top or on the wings.

The best tip I walked away with was to consistently video your goalies during their warm ups.  Every three weeks film them for 5-8 minutes and then review the tape with your goalie.


About the Authors: Bill Sigmund is a junior defensemen, 3 year starter, and Vice President for the Grove City College Wolverine Lacrosse team.  Bill is a mechanical engineering student at Grove City, yet he hopes to stay involved with the sport of lacrosse even after he completes school.

Andrew J. Dymski is a senior goaltender, captain, and president for the Grove City College Wolverine Lacrosse team.