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Archives by Tag 'Individual Defense'

Strengthen Your Team’s Individual Defense with this 1-on-1 Drill!

By Kevin Fitzpatrick - Last updated: Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Train your athletes to be better individual attackers and defenders with this drill from University of Colorado head women’s coach Ann Elliot. Coach Elliot loves to run this drill because it strengthens players’ footwork, conditioning and mentality in a difficult situation.

1-on-1 Restraining Line

Drill Summary: Before beginning, set up a line of cones about ten yards off the sideline to use as a boundary (this can be a line already on the field if there is one available). The goalkeeper starts with the ball in the net, with a defender in the drill boundary directly across from the goalie and an attacker ready to re-defend. The goalie sends a clearing pass to the defender, who then must advance the ball to a line about 30-50 yards down the field (could be the restraining line). Once the player with the ball reaches that line, they must make a clean pass to another player who is waiting on the other side of the line. The person guarding the ball tries to force the offense to the outside of the field, create turnovers or cause a bad pass. If the defender creates a turnover or forces a bad pass, the defense gets a point. If the offensive player steps outside of the drill boundaries, it counts as a turnover.

Keys to the Drill:

1) On offense, use whatever individual moves you have.
2) On defense, focus on staying in front of the offensive player.
3) Good footwork.
4) Maintain composure.

This video came from Championship Productions’ video “Drill Progressions for Developing Team Defense.” View other world class Lacrosse videos!

Develop Better Individual Defense with this 1 vs. 1 Activity!

By nate.landas - Last updated: Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Jason Breyo, Lambert (GA) High School Assistant Coach, shows you a 1 vs. 1 defensive drill that will help athletes learn the basics of playing good individual defense. This will also lead to developing the skills needed to play good team defense. Coach Breyo begins by teaching the developing defenders the importance of quick footwork in order to play solid defense. 

1 vs. 1 Defense

Player Movements: This drill begins by having a defensive player take on an attackman without using the long pole. As the drill progresses and the player now uses the D-pole. The defenders are instructed again on proper positioning, using an effective poke check, staying on the attackman’s hands, and keeping the stick in front of the man.

Drill Essentials: For the attackman, emphasize the importance of beginning a drive with their off-hand, switching hands, and roll dodging. For the defender, focus on proper stance, direction that he wants to drive the offensive player, use of the drop step, shuffling his feet, and effective pushing.

Drill Tips: The defender should work on cutting across the crease to get a better angle on the attacker and keep them from getting closer to the goal.

Check out an additional clip from the Championship Productions’ DVD “Defensive Skills & Drills for Youth Lacrosse.” If you’re interested in more Individual Defense videos, click here.

A Pair of Effective Lacrosse Drills for Up-Tempo Defense

By adam.warner - Last updated: Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Pick up two efficient defensive drills this week that reinforce fundamentals and will improve your team’s transition game. The Bulldog Drill and Intercept Pass Drill are both staples for the Tufts men’s lacrosse program, Div. III’s national champs in 2010. From clearing to team communication, these drills cover many facets of the game and will be huge additions to your practice plan this season.

Bulldog Drill

This first drill is a fine tool to encourage good habits for defenders. It also works on getting up the field and using an over pass as a part of a circuit of passing drills.

Start with a coach or goalie rolling a ball out to an open side. Then have an over pass where the ball goes to the other side of the field before two more upfield passes are made. As you roll the ball out, look to run through the ground ball. As you start your transition, try to push up the field and get a fast break. If it’s open, take it. If it’s not open, reverse the ball. Look for a break out pass and then a pass on the other side of the field to finish the drill up.

Coaching Tips: When it comes to the ground ball and driving up the field, we want an explosive move up the field. Sometimes in practice, we have the tendency to go slow. You must go at full speed. Once players get the hang of the drill, look to get more than one ball going at once.


Intercept Pass Drill

The “Intercept Pass Drill” focuses on improving on-ball to off-ball communication, using both ends of the field, and having a continual rotation. Coaches, make sure that the prime defender in the drill intercepts the pass at some point.

The set-up has three offensive players making sure the defender is playing at least two of his main roles on defense: being in the hole, on ball, or adjacent.

To begin, our defender is either in the hole or adjacent. As adjacent, he goes out to play the ball and now he’s on ball. As a new adjacent, he’s working back inside to help out and play team defense. His primary purpose now is to take away the skip pass. You can do that by working back inside. Be sure to look over your shoulder to find the skip lane. Do not blindly look inside.


Alright, so let’s put this all together now. Start by working out to play the ball and apply pressure there. As you work back inside, open to the ball, peak over your shoulder and get in position to get that interception. If you take away that skip pass, you can be in a great position to play great team defense.

Coaching Tips: Don’t leave the drill until you make an interception, even if it takes awhile. Coaches, make sure that players are constantly communicating out there. Also, you can go both sides of the cage at the same time to increase team reps.

The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “Fundamental Defense Drills for Winning Lacrosse.” To check out more defensive-oriented videos in our lacrosse library, click here

Riding Schemes: Essential Rules and Roles for the 10-Man Zone Ride

By adam.warner - Last updated: Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Force your opponent into turnovers and low percentage passes through the 10-Man Zone Ride. Stevens head coach Gene Peluso walks you through each step of his go-to riding system and breaks down complete player roles and responsibilities. Then catch his squad in action as players demonstrate the zone ride in a full-field setting.

10-Man Zone Ride Overview

According to Coach Peluso, coaches aren’t spending nearly enough time on the riding game at all levels. If you spend time enforcing it with your team, it can pay major dividends. As for this system, it’s an all or nothing, no hesitation ride utilized 75 percent of the time by Stevens. A key point to remember is that there will be times when your squad lets up transition goals, but 7 out of 10 times they should be looking to get the ball on the ground and create some offense.

Attackman Rules

1) The attack is in a triangle and a rotation call

2) It’s important that the backside attack covers the middle of the field in front of the face-off area to give added support

3) Ride towards the outside of the field (get a trap or double to produce a turnover)

4) No takeaway checks; Ride hip to hip and set up the ball carrier for the trap or double

5) Do your job and contain the clearing person in your area

6) If there are two players in your area, go to the one closest to the ball.

All players go hard to the ball when it is thrown in your area. They have no responsibility behind them. They maintain their position in the zone even if there’s a player in his zone (meaning they do not begin to cover the man in their zone until the ball is thrown).


Midfield Riding Rules

1) Wing middies have responsibility to go after anyone in front of them when the ball is thrown.

2) Wing middies cover the wing area from the sideline to the face-off X area.

3) The center middie (LSM) covers the area from the middle up to the sidelines. This player is very aggressive. It’s important they play their angles right. Try to funnel the ball carrier into a trap. Pin players to the sidelines and not the middle of the field.

All players go hard to the ball when it is thrown in your area. They have no responsibility behind them. They maintain their position in the zone even if there is a player in his zone (meaning they do not begin to cover the man in their zone until the ball is thrown).


Defensive and Goalie Riding Rules

1) Wing defenders have similar responsibilities as the wing middies.

2) Cover any throw in their areas from the sideline to the center of the field between their defensive restraining line and the midfield line.

3) The goalie and down defender will split the three attackmen leaving the attacker furthest from the ball. The goalie should stay close to the cage.

All players go hard to the ball when it is thrown in your area. They have no responsibility behind them. They maintain their position in the zone even if there is a player in his zone (meaning they do not begin to cover the man in their zone until the ball is thrown).

Notes: Don’t let players get nervous and bail out of this. Don’t encourage this. Many turnovers can still occur in defensive side of the field.

General Riding Rules

1) This is an all or nothing ride

2) There should be no hesitation

3) Go full speed and attack the ball when it is thrown in front of you in your area

Notes: The hope is that so much pressure is created that the opponent can’t get the ball near our defensive restraining line. If they do, it is a scramble situation. It may happen 2 out of 10 times, but the 8 times it does not, we may create unsettled opportunities for our offense.


The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “High Energy, High Success Rides” with Gene Peluso. To check out more special teams videos in our lacrosse library, click here

Slide Schemes: Effective Drills & Concepts to Improve Team Defense

By adam.warner - Last updated: Tuesday, April 17, 2012

In this week’s team development feature, we’ll focus on defensive slide schemes in a 4 v 4 format. Be sure to pick up critical tips, strategies, and effective practice drills from one of the game’s brightest minds. Brown head men’s lacrosse coach Lars Tiffany first breaks down the action using whiteboard diagrams before moving to the field for live simulations.

The action starts with 4 v 4 dodging and then moves into top down slide schemes. Also, read about more defensive practice drills and key strategies by checking out previous features featuring Coach Tiffany.

4 v 4 Dodging — Overview

This 4 v 4 drill, zeroing in on perimeter rotation, is highly effective for building on team defensive concepts and practicing game-like situations. Start by putting four offensive players in box positions on the outside (two behind attackers and two middies up top). Then put four defenders on the field as well, each covering an offensive player. Coach Tiffany prefers to start by coming out of the low right corner for this drill. You can also change where you do the initial dodge to practice a number of different looks.


Key Concepts & Drill Strategies

In terms of player roles, “D0” means the on-ball defender. Because there is no crease in play with this set-up, we must slide adjacent. Here we can practice our adjacent slide schemes versus a perimeter four-man set up.

D1 is the hot man and must be ready to slide cross crease. D2 is ready to be the second slide, or our fill. D3 could also be ready to be the third slide. If your unit does a good job on the on-ball defender and forces the attacker to the outside or inside roll and doesn’t beat you top side, then D1 comes cross crease. If the offense makes the open pass to the opposite open attacker, D2 comes down the backside with the second slide and then D3 arrives with the third slide across. Meanwhile, our recovery man (the former on-ball defender) comes back and finds the open man, which in this case is the middie up top.

Goals: You can get a ton of reps with this drill. All players should rotate through the positions as well (from D0 to D3). This way, defenders must recognize their new roles and make the proper adjustments.

4 v 4 Top Down Slide Schemes

This particular slide scheme simulates when the second slide comes from the top down. The drill demonstrates when there are three middies up top offensively, a set-up teams are using more frequently in recent years. There’s also one crease player and likely two players behind the goal with this formation.

In this simulation, the dodge is coming from the top left middie, and “D0” will be the on-ball defender. Also, get a line of players just off to the side and ready to step up after each rep.

Key Strategies: “D1” is our hot player and covering the crease player in the middle. Now, we have a choice as to who’s going to be that second slide. Let’s identify “D2” now for the second slide on the backside wing. When D1 moves up with his slide, D2 will then slide down the backside to cover the crease man and “fill down.” Now the offense won’t have an open crease player because we slid properly and have it covered. Then it all comes down to how quickly the offense can move the ball around against how quickly the defense can recover and defend against it. There is a big chance for a 2-on-1 offensive break, so communication is key for the defense.


Goals: You can have them go at 100 percent and smash each other OR go at 75 percent and have the dodger dodge and force the defense to slide, and then the dodger resets and goes again. Make this simulation realistic where the defense must slide, recover, and then slide again quickly.


The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “How to Create a Strong Team Defense” with Lars Tiffany. To check out more defensive-oriented videos, head over to our lacrosse library


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