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In this week’s edition of All-Access, we take you back to the campus of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana for another behind-the-scenes look at one of the nation’s top lacrosse programs.
Led by head coach Kevin Corrigan, the men’s lacrosse team heads indoors for an early season practice session and works through 1-on-1 drills, full-field fast breaks, and a number of offensive sets.
The following 1-on-1 drills start behind the net. Simply, it involves an offensive player going up against a defender, with a goalie also participating. Each repetition starts with a pass from a designated outlet guy to the offensive player in the drill.
The goal for the offense is to beat the defender, get to the front of the net, practice individual moves, and work on finishing in traffic and close to the goal. For the defense, it’s all about beating the offensive players to their spot, honing footwork and stick skills, and working on recovery moves if beaten.
This nonstop full-field drill focuses on back-and-forth action in a 4-on-4 format. After a play finishes (whether by a shot, save, turnover, or goal), there’s an immediate outlet and fast break all the way to the other end of the field where another group is waiting.
This is a tremendous opportunity for the offensive team to work on its transition game and quick sets within the offense. It’s initially 3-on-3 waiting at one end, an offensive guy leading the fast break, and then a defender also trailing, thus creating the fast break scenario. This also fosters a chance for the defense to work on recovery, stopping the break, and overall communication.
This final drill features the first attack and first midfield units. The offense is basically working on their team sets against a ghost defense. Ideally, the attack wants to draw a slide and find that open man on the backside.
The offense moves through “Stag”, a play the team recently ran in a game but didn’t quite cash in despite a few good opportunities. The segment features extensive coaching tips and tactics by Coach Corrigan as the offense rotates through the first, second, and third units. Finally, the group concludes with “Pop”, which produces a key cut when the ball goes through X.
The previous videos can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “All Access Lacrosse Practice with Kevin Corrigan.” To check out additional videos in our All Access collection, head over to our lacrosse library.
In this week’s edition of All Access, we take you back to Durham, North Carolina for a behind-the-scenes look at a Duke University men’s lacrosse practice. Watch as head coach John Danowski leads his squad through a number of competitive drills, including ball handling, full field transition, and 4 v 4 half field drills.
This first ball handling drill focuses on defenders only with no opposition. Players work on handling the ball in their typical positions and look to spread out in their own defensive end. The goal is to mimic typical passing situations in your own zone, improve on passing and catching (especially long outlets), and move the ball efficiently up the field.
Passes go from the goalie to each of the defenders and then up to the nearest midfielders around the midfield line. The drill forces players to change directions, make quick decisions, and work on key fundamentals such as catching, footwork, and passing. Notice that players are always moving with the ball and that quick, seamless transitions are made between groups.
The following transition drill starts with the coach rolling out a ground ball to the face-off players at midfield. The players fight for possession and the team that comes up with the ball transitions to offense.
A three second rule is implemented in the drill to promote quick decision-making, solid ball movement, and constant attacking at a rapid pace. If a player holds possession for more than three seconds, a whistle is called and that player must drop the ball at that spot. The closest player picks up the ball immediately (AKA a “free scholarship”) and starts up play for his side.
For this 4-on-4 half field drill, the team is now split into two groups, a white team and a black team. Each side takes turns going on offense. The goals are simple. The defense must make stops and offense must score goals.
Teams can tally a point by scoring. It’s a two-ball drill for each set of groups, meaning there’s two main possessions for each rotation. The balls initiate once behind the net and then once from up top. You can get two points for each group of four guys out on the field. Meanwhile, the defense needs to clear cleanly to get out of the drill.
This is a terrific team-wide drill that promotes competition while focusing on half field skills.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “All Access Duke Lacrosse Practice: Individual Skills & Full Field Drills – Volume II” with John Danowski. To check out more videos in our All Access collection, simply head over to our lacrosse library.
In this week’s edition of All Access, we take you to Haverford, Pennsylvania for a behind-the-scenes look at a Haverford School boys’ lacrosse practice. Watch as head coach John Nostrant leads his squad through a number of team drills on the heels of a big victory over archrival Malvern Prep.
This All Access session presents a great opportunity for coaches and players to see exactly how one of the nation’s top high school lacrosse teams prepares for opponents during the week. In this example, Coach Nostrant has his team run through the England Drill and the Mineola Drill, two highly effective half-field drills that get the players going at game speed.
At the time of filming, the Fords were 17-0 and coming off a huge win over the Friars. The coaches have told the players that they are looking for an up-tempo practice, which is a typical practice following a game. Meanwhile, the next day’s practice will be a little bit more specific and geared toward their opponent on Saturday.
The drill starts out 2 vs. 1 with the offensive players sprinting down the field from the midfield line with possession. Note: The coaches eventually tell the players to pass the ball forward to their teammate from the start and play it from there.
The players are looking to finish on goal in a 2 on 1 transition situation (with goalie in net). As soon as the play is over (whether it be via goal, missed shot, save, turnover, etc.), one additional defender and one additional offensive player enter and the drill turns into a 3 on 2 situation. The new offensive player comes down with the ball and passes it ahead to a teammate and the unit looks to score quickly. Players must be on their feet at all times and ready to attack.
Next, the drill moves to 4 on 3, then 5 on 4, and finishes with a 6 on 5 situation. Entering players must always communicate with teammates and get into position as soon as possible. As soon as one play is over, the next one should commence immediately.
The team is looking to run a number of different sets here. When you hear “31” called out, that means the unit is set up in a 2-3-1. The squad also likes to put a middie down on the crease at times with this look. Each set might be different depending on the kind of personnel playing at the time. The first group that you see is the team’s first group of offensive middies.
Next it’s to “20X”, which is the team’s double team. Notice there’s no need for a horn as the team just gets right into things. Meanwhile, it’s key that the players are always reading and reacting.
The coaching staff prefers to progress as practice goes along, and eventually the squad moves into a 6 on 6 out of a scramble set, which forces sliding and decision making, rather than just going straight 6 on 6. It also allows the guys to play with different groups and ensures that no one gets complacent.
Meanwhile, Nostrant and his staff try to make the teams even in every practice. Haverford has 38 players, so the coaches prefer to keep them active. Also, you can do a lot with this drill. For instance, the squad is currently working on clearing and this really gets everyone involved in the flow.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “All Access Haverford Lacrosse Practice with John Nostrant.” To check out more videos in our All Access series, simply head over to our lacrosse video library.
In this week’s edition of All Access, we take you to Stony Brook, New York for a behind-the-scenes look at a Stony Brook University men’s lacrosse practice. Watch as former head coach Rick Sowell leads his squad through a number of team drills in preparation for the season opener – just two weeks away.
This All Access session presents a great opportunity for coaches and players to see exactly how a top college lacrosse program prepares for opponents during the week. In this example, Coach Sowell talks to his team in the locker room before reviewing game film from a previous contest. Eventually, the players take to the field and run through a variety of ground ball and shooting drills that mimic game-like situations and quick decision-making.
First, Coach Sowell talks with his squad about ways they can get to the fourth quarter and give themselves a chance to win every game. Concepts such as team defense, fundamentals, knowing your role, and establishing a gameplan are all discussed. Says Sowell, “Remember going forward, time and score matters. It must factor into everything we do. Playing your role is also important, especially when trying to set the game plan.”
Next, Sowell reviews video footage from a recent contest, focusing on defensive tactics. Specific player movements are detailed, including how they should react based on offensive passes and dodges.
After the locker room discussion, the team begins practice with a competitive 1-on-1 ground ball drill. Basically, it’s a fight for possession where players must scoop up the ground balls under major pressure. Once they scoop, the player with possession sprints back the other direction and tries to elude the defender. In this scoop and run drill, short sticks may end up going against long sticks. Players will start at a specified line before the coach rolls out a ball. Players can also work on their ground ball moves as well, such as boxing out the defender.
First, one after another, players move across the crease unloading inside shots on cage. This is an opportunity for players to really work on their hands, shooting close to the net, and overall accuracy in a tight space. It’s also a chance for players to practice different shots down low. For instance, changing planes when making a fake. This drill is a great way for players to get a lot of shots in a short amount of time.
Later on, players move into rapid fire shots. There are dozens of balls set on the ground in two areas at the point. One player scoops and passes across before a shooter dodges or carries and fires on net. This drill is a perfect way to get into shooting shape.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “All Access Lacrosse Practice with Rick Sowell.” To check out more videos in our All Access lineup, simple head over to our lacrosse catalog here.
In this week’s edition of All Access, we take you back to Denver, Colorado for a behind-the-scenes look at a University of Denver men’s lacrosse practice. Watch as legendary head coach Bill Tierney leads his squad through a variety of team drills in preparation for an early-season match-up.
This All Access session is an ideal way for coaches to see exactly how a top college lacrosse program prepares for opponents during the week. In this instance, Denver runs through a variety of pressure passing and transition drills centered on game-like situations and quick decision-making.
The goal here is to get some regular stickwork in but while under some pressure. Coach Tierney believes that the team must get better under pressure at practice in order for the squad to be successful in games. This particular drill moves up the entire length of the field with 1-on-1 pressure passing situations, from one group of players to the next.
In this drill, there’s one more player on offense than defense. The goal is to quickly move the ball around the perimeter and have the players keep their feet moving when throwing and catching the ball. Offensive guys are working on their pressure passing around the horn and needing to pass and catch with a tight defense on their heels. It’s also a great drill so that players can work on their footwork and stickwork skills.
With “Hoops“, a ball is thrown out onto the field and it’s initially a 2-on-2 fight for possession. The direction of play depends on which team scoops up the ground ball. Whichever team scoops up the ball, they immediately transition down the field and look for the quick score.
Although not entirely realistic, the drill simulates a 5-on-5 situation that starts with a ground ball fight. The offensive team is trying to push the ball and score, while the defense is looking to get set and recover on the transition break.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “All Access Denver Lacrosse Practice with Bill Tierney.” To check out our entire all access collection, visit our extensive lacrosse library. Don’t miss our latest edition featuring Haverford (PA) head coach John Nostrant.