The Art of Spring Training

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Just as lacrosse season was heating up earlier this year, I traveled to an oasis in the middle of the desert to experience one of the coolest educational events available to high school players. No, it had nothing to do with late nights, beaches or dune-buggy derbies. This wasn’t “spring break.”

It was Spring Training.

Grande Sports World sits just outside the definition of the middle of nowhere. Close enough to Phoenix, Arizona, that you don’t feel too far out. The area once served as home to San Francisco Giants spring training shenanigans way back when, so naturally the hotel pool is shaped like a baseball mitt.

Fifteen years ago, the idea of a lacrosse event being run at a baseball spring training facility might have sounded a little far-out. These days, however, nobody seems to wince.

Irony aside, Each team funded its own way to the Casa Grande for an all-inclusive butt-kicking and get-your-butt-kicked kind-of-week hosted by Trilogy Lacrosse. Trilogy CEO Ryan Boyle, known as one of the most gifted minds in the game, set the tempo from the start.

What follows is a photo essay depicting my time on the ground at Spring Training. It’s easy to shed light on what a top-notch educational experience looks like through these photographs. But my real hope is that they help inspire budding high school lacrosse programs to make the most out of the time they get together during the Spring.

Learning With The Best, From The Best

Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
True story: John Wayne used to watch Giants spring training from the penthouse suite, which is shaped like a baseball cap from a bird’s eye view.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
This observation deck used to deliver 360-degree views of baseball action. Now it’s all lacrosse all-the-time, at least one week out the year!
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Truly an oasis in the middle of the desert, the fields are the most pristine West of the Mississippi.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Newark Academy attended Spring Training for its second consecutive year. The kids enjoy the bonding time and the chance to compete against top Arizona teams.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Tough life.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Inside: State of the art locker rooms, strength training facilities, and a few whirlpools (an obvious hit).
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Berkshire refused to adapt to Pacific Time, scheduling 5AM wakeup-workout calls on the reg. #Respect
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
This Berkshire squad is on the verge of building something very special, and you can tell. The sheer dedication mixed with positivity from every coach on staff is a testament to that.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
B is for “Brothers”
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Boyle spent quality time with each program, everyday. Here he is waxing poetic with the Air Academy Kadets out of Colorado Springs, Colorado – the only public high school on a military base in the United States (I think).
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Coach Ford from Holderness is the man, and his players treat him as such. Mix in wisdom from Ryan Boyle, and these players will exit high school with lacrosse knowledge unparalleled.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
The only thing “break” about this spring adventure? Metal shafts on the crosscheck!
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Picturesque venue. No calmer place to learn the game.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Boyle speaking with Air Academy at halftime of a game against an AZ team.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Yoda.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Sharing that wisdom.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Westminster Academy’s coach just retired after 25 years at the helm. Great guy who has built a phenomenal program of leaders on and off the field.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Coach Bob Low had a field named in his honor at Holderness, but apparently that wasn’t enough. He returns to Arizona each year with his squad from The Groton School, where he serves as head lacrosse coach and Athletic Director.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Spring Training also provided the perfect platform for assistant coaches to get busy inspiring.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
The Minutemen
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Adrian will attend the University of Notre Dame in 2017.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
One straight week of lacrosse = pure focus.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Perfect time to ingrain the fundamentals of the game.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Looks don’t matter. Numbers regardless. It ain’t spring break.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Camaraderie 101
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Air Academy always travels in style. A fantastic group of young men right there.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
It can’t be Spring Training without taking in at least a couple innings of spring training!
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Boyle’s twig taking a quick power nap.
Trilogy Lacrosse Spring Training
Secluded from the rest of the world. 100% focused on the game.

“It’s not spring break. It’s Spring Training.”

Special thanks to Trilogy Lacrosse for hosting me in Arizona. To learn more about Trilogy’s Spring Training, visit TrilogyLacrosse.com.