The famous West Genny Drill has been around for my entire 32 years in lacrosse. Every coaching staff I’ve been on has utilized this drill as one of its many small-sided games.
Let’s take a look at what the drill is and why virtually everyone uses it in some form.
The West Genny Drill
The West Genny Drill has a long history in lacrosse, stemming back to the West Genesse lacrosse program.
“During the 1980’s, West Genesee went 212-6, winning five New York State Championships and making it to the Championship game six times, including 91 straight wins from 1981-84. All these players from this one school, playing this style of ‘Run and Gun’ Lacrosse are so famous, they have their own drill named after them.”LaxLibrary.com
The drill mimics many aspects of lacrosse, most notably fast breaks and uneven, unsettled situations. To set up the West Genny Drill:
“Starts with three lines behind each goal. To start the drill one team has a three on two, and run down the field with the ball. They try to score, after either scoring or dropping the ball the last player to touch the ball gets back in line then the two remaining players play defense.”League Athletics
The West Genny Drill is exactly like a common basketball drill I grew up with. We didn’t have a fancy name for it, but it’s three-on-two one way, then two-on-one down the other end. The only difference is that lacrosse has a goalie.
So why is West Genny such a popular drill? Well, when it’s run correctly, it creates a lot of opportunities for players to learn. They learn about decision making, hedging on defense, splitting two men off-ball, and it forces players to think fast and react faster.
The drill also creates a low-risk environment for making mistakes. With the pace being frenetic and continuous, players can make a mistake, get back in line, and then try again.
Known for its fast pace and back-and-forth nature, several people have noticed a similarity between the new World Lacrosse Sixes and the West Genny Drill. In fact, if I were an international coach, I’d only need one drill to accurately replicate and sufficiently prepare my team for competition.