Check out these three pracrical shooting drills that replicate game situations. Robert Morris head lacrosse coach Kenneth “Bear” Davis leads you through each one, first through whiteboard discussion and then via on-field simulations. Each drill is suitable for players of all levels and easy to implement into your own practices. After making these drills a part of your practice routine, hopefully they’ll deliver results come game time.
Give and Go Shooting
In this drill, one player will start with the ball before giving it up to his teammate. That first player will then make a back cut immediately after passing the ball. The feeder will then pass it right back to that player before the shooter get his hands set and then rips a shot. Communication is particularly important here among players for this type of play to succeed.
Meanwhile, the shooter has options. He can shuffle down, or get an over-the-shoulder look, among several other moves. Also, the “Give and Go” is ideal for middies in order to simulate a fast break, where players typically pass off to a point attackman before calling for the ball right back. You typically see give and go looks stemming from fast break opportunities.
Tip: On the shuffle move, players should get their shoulders square to the ball carrier before calling for the ball and receiving it back.
Pick & Roll Shooting
If your offense features a lot of pick and rolls, it’s key that your offense can also read and react to the pick and rolls, too. This drill is a great way to practice this.
You can run this drill from the side or from up top, whatever fits your offense best. Don’t forget that players need to open up and get their shoulders square to the ball carrier (so he/she can be ready to receive the pass). Coaches can also dictate where they want players to move in the drill, like telling players they must give it up, or go to the cage, or allow a player to freelance (unscripted).
Tip: You can run this drill on both sides of the cage at the same time to maximize reps and make sure everyone is getting involved.
According to Coach Davis, this is not a drill for the weak. Line up your players in two lines and within the hash marks of the field. One line should be filled with defenders. The other line will have midfielders or attackmen. One midfielder/attacker will carry the ball and go one-on-one with a defenseman. Players have limited space to work with and must stay within the perimeter of hash marks (where the lines are formed).
Starting at the 50-yard line, players must run down the gauntlet until it’s just a one-on-one with the goal. If the offensive player beats the defender clean, then the defender must do all he/she can to chase and recover. The offensive player will look to get off a high percentage shot on goal.
This is a terrific warm-up drill for 1-on-1’s. Defenders get to work on their footwork and offensive players get to work on their ball protection.
Tip: Once within 10 yards of the cage, players can then shoot on net. Also, you can make this drill as physical as you’d like, but it’s recommended to get the fundamentals down first.