Pocket 34

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Ever heard of Pocket 34 by Shooterz Lacrosse?

A reader recently wrote in to tell us about it…

The guy who strings it is named Lyle Tomlinson. He’s the man. He strings for top pros and D1 athletes, including Lorne Smith who was on Marin at the Tahoe Tourney and Virginia’s entire offense.

He’s only taught a select few people how to string it. All the people in the forums who try to copy it aren’t even close. I won’t play with anything else. This guy deserves huge recognition. I think there’s a video interview out there on the internets somewhere. Thanks for listening!

[Ed’s note: Couldn’t find the video anywhere! If you got it, send it on through!]

Why is this pocket so hard to reproduce?

Mesh simply isn’t that hard. EVER. It is rare that 2 people string sticks the exact same way so I’m not surprised to see guys on the forums giving it a shot, but not getting it 100% right.

Brendan Mundorf and Ned Crotty play with double Vs in their sticks and while I don’t think they are Pocket 34 guys, the concept is the same.  I’m doubtful that this is the ONLY way to get a great mesh pocket, but it certainly seems like a really good one.

Regardless, props to Lyle Tomlinson for creating such a hot method. Sounds like he’s the guy to know!

[Top photo credit: faceofflax15]

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17 COMMENTS

  1. First thing's first. The picture up top screams “Lyle didn't string me.” If you don't cringe because you can immediately tell why, then you clearly haven't looked hard enough on the forums haha.

    I looked around for that video and I couldn't find it, although I distinctly remember watching it a while back. However, here's a shoutout from MLL midfielder Kyle Dixon, who, by virtue of being a Virginia standout, also has his sticks strung by Lyle:
    http://insidelacrosse.com/blog/2009/06/15/insid

    While admittedly mesh is designed to be “easy” (at least comparatively speaking), I have not seen anyone other than the few Lyle has instructed actually copy his pocket to the degree he'd check off on, which begs the question, is this really just a mesh pocket? Technically speaking it is; it's mesh and sidewall with some shooters artfully tossed in. Yet these big-name players that associate themselves with Lyle don't have the forum copycats rigging their wands. No, they ship them across the country to California for the real deal instead. If there weren't more that goes into this “easy” mesh pocket than you can extract from a set of photos (even if they actually were of Lyle's work) I doubt they'd bother with the shipping costs. I apologize for my militancy–admittedly I have a bit of a penchant for the dramatic–but it seems to me what the stick-doctors of the forums are missing is modesty, of being humbled by a pocket that might be less “easy” than they assume…

  2. There were over 400 All Americans in boys HS lacrosse last year. I wonder how many of them needed a stick actually strung by Lyle Tomlinson to to get to that level? It's the wizzard not the wand. The reason anyone goes back to a guy to string their stick over and over again is consistency and performance. Lyle Tomlinson hasn't invented anything new…. he is just good at the craft of stringing and has a following. There are tons of guys who are good at stringing and can create consistent pockets with a channel, hold, whip, etc…

    Keep in mind their are more top players in the world using a stick NOT strung by Lyle Tomlinson than there are with one of his. Just like all sales… its about the marketing.

  3. Lyle coached me in middle school and made a fortune charging 13 year olds to string up sticks that were for “elites”. I never really liked the way his string jobs threw but thats just me. The first stick i ever strung was actually at a little work shop at a camp taught by Lyle stringing his 34

    • hahaha the first stringing i ever attempted was also at a little workshop at jake bergeys wings camp…he was not a great teacher, nor the nicest guy, nor that good at lacrosse, but he could string a stick like no other. god forbid he ever gave anyone else any tips. He would charge 11 year old kids 40 dollars for a string job.

  4. if you dont mind id like to butt in….. I work for shooterz and have been stringing with lyle for about 8 years. the pocket started as the love channel at California lacrosse co. it ten transformed into a goal scoring beast on the lax field called the P34. its called the P34 cause 34 was lyles number in high school and college. even if you were to stare at a real P34 for hours in the day youd still never make one like a Shooterz P34. the small detail that goes into every stick is a thing of art. the pliar work will litterly ive you blisters.

    The amount of pros and elite college players that use it should be enough to make any lax rat NEED one. The ENTIRE Harvard mens D1 program just ordered P34s. You cant tell me that doesnt give it some street credit in the lax world.