It often takes lacrosse companies some time to find their groove, but when they do, the chance to consistently produce truly great product is absolutely there, and in Maverik Lacrosse’s case they arrived a couple of years ago, and have continued to improve. They offer products that are high level at a number of price points, and their shafts, heads, and gloves really stand out as some of the best available. Being part of the Cascade world certainly helps with credibility, but the proof is in the pudding – Maverik Lacrosse is making some really good gear these days.
(Check out our other published 2018 Gear Reviews – Powell Lacrosse’s new heads and shafts, and Cascade Lacrosse’s new S Helmet. There are more reviews to come!)
The heads they are producing are strong, string up really nicely, and offer a variety of face shapes and design approaches. The Tactik is a really solid option for a number of different positions from attack to LSM, and some of their older heads like the Optik, Tank, and Centrik still have strong followings. Maverik Lacrosse has also done well with shafts, whether it’s a newer product or the good old Wonderboy. When it comes to gloves or padding, Maverik has really pushed some boundaries in small, but creative, ways.
Maverik Lacrosse is, and has been, producing really good equipment. So what do they have on tap for 2018?
2018 Maverik Lacrosse Heads
Kinetik head – The Kinetik looks like it will be soft and lack stiffness when you first look at it, but there are some neat tricks at play to increase stiffness, and create a light but very strong head. Maverik has started using an “X” shaped cross bracing for their sidewall struts, and the strength it gives a cutaway head is quite impressive. Sidewalls are left open for the most part, and this showcases a full offset that draws the naked eye to it immediately. The head looks aggressive, but its stiffness still surprised me when I first picked it up. The head may pinch a little if you really put in through the ringer, but it’s wide enough to start that this will not impact how it plays.
When it comes to stringing, the Kinetik head is definitely different than a lot of other heads out there. The head’s unique shape keeps a wider flare further down the sidewall, so the third stringing hole, and even the fourth, is almost as wide as the holes are at widest point of the scoop. This allows for a really nice high “shelf pocket”, where the balls sits right below the bottom shooter, but it doesn’t stop you from stringing a more traditional channel pocket either. I’ve been able to string up great mesh and traditional pockets in my Kinetik, and the stringing holes are really well placed, and there are plenty of them.
This is a good head for offensive players, and defenders looking for a lightweight option. The head isn’t designed for defense, so it may warp a little faster if you’re it to beat on people all day, but the face is wide enough for solid ground ball work, and the stick is great for transition play as the ball really sits hard due to the full offset.
2018 Maverik Lacrosse Gloves
M4 Glove – The last number of Maverik gloves have delivered on the most important aspects for any lacrosse glove – protection and comfort. On top of that, they usually offer a couple of neat perks and a competitive price point for a glove that really is top of the line. The M4 glove lives up to this standard nicely, and while the glove doesn’t look all that fancy at first glance, there are plenty of great features. When you get up close, and put them on, the M4 gloves will turn your head.
Every part of your hand is well protected, but somehow the gloves still have great flex right away. How is this done? The first thing is a small gap between the knuckle and the padding on the back of the hand. While this gap is not big enough for the plastic of a head to get through, it does provide just enough space for the glove to flex perfectly when you pass, catch, or cradle.
This is kind of simple, but nonetheless impressive, design work and it gives the gloves that broken in feeling right away without sacrificing any protection. Simple stuff can be ingenious stuff! The cuff also has velcro on it between the 3 pads, so it can be flared out wide, or kept narrow, depending on preference. Maybe you’re a middle of the road guy, that’s doable too!
The palms are not all AxSuede leather, but most of them are, so your interaction with the stick is smooth and gives you good touch. There are some mesh portions, and they are placed where a palm typically folds, and doesn’t touch the stick as much, so the general feel of a full soft palm is more or less maintained. I prefer a full (but thin) AxSuede leather palm, but the mesh sections do add to the broken-in right away feeling that many players crave. Overall, the M4 hits on all the important aspects when it comes to protection and comfort, and the added little extras make it a top level glove. Maverik has been doing great stuff with their gloves over the last few years, and the M4 picks on that tradition.
2018 Maverik Lacrosse Shafts
HyperLite (Carbon Fiber) – As the name suggests, the HyperLite is… light. When I say light I mean it’s lighter than most carbon fiber shafts, and it even gives some of the lighter metal shafts a run for their money. It’s solid at one end (the butt) and open at the other end, where you screw on your head. A lot of carbon fiber shafts have a high density substance at the open end, but the HyperLite is fully open, with no filler. The feel of the finish is smooth and simple, and I like how it interacts with the Maverik glove palms. Graphics are simple and subdued. A Maverik doughnut ring and screw driver are included, so you really don’t need any tape at all on this stick, if that’s not your thing. If it is, the tape goes on smooth on top of the smooth finish, and either way you’re going to have a shaft with great touch and feel. It’s a solid shaft that can take, and give, a good amount of abuse.
Apollo (Metal) – The Apollo comes in a couple different colors, its graphics are simple, and when you pick it up you’ll immediately respond to how light it is. The shaft is open at both ends, and both the front face and rear face have a standard octagonal shape to them. The middle portion is concave, and for guys who really cradle with their finger tips, and want that extra feel, it’s a nice place to have a concave wall. For me, it’s too much to have a concave shape to every part of the shaft, so I really like that this is limited to the side portions only. When you really grip the stick to take a hard shot, you get that old feel still, and with this shaft’s lightness, it makes for a fun option for shooters and skill guys. The finish is pretty smooth, and a butt end cap and doughnut ring are both included, along with a screwdriver. If you like classic, but light, metal shafts then the Apollo is a great option. As with any shaft, the Apollo will dent and ding over time, but it will stand up to the test of time well. For all its lightness, the Apollo is also a pretty tough, solid shaft.
Once again, Maverik Lacrosse has produced high quality gear that looks good and play great. The heads and shafts are light and strong, and the gloves are protective and get the job done with some nice little customization options. Good stuff from Maverik Lacrosse in 2018!
2018 Gear Review Methodology – We did outreach to manufacturers asking them to send us any new (or relatively new) product they wanted reviewed for 2018. We made no promises on what we would say, and every brand is given an opportunity to participate. Our focus is on Heads, shafts, helmets, gloves, padding, and footwear. We will also a giant 2018 Mesh Review soon. No scores are given. We simply talk about the positives (and negatives) of any product. Our goal is to help you, the consumer, make informed decisions on equipment purchases. That’s it!