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Experienced U.S. Lacrosse Women’s National team coach, Amy Bokker, puts together a defensive drill that is sure to prepare defenders of all levels to focus on the fundamentals of their defensive approach. Her ‘Defensive Box Breakdown Step Drill’ is a great way to start off partner work with a defensive mindset to get a lot of reps in before going into a small game environment.
You begin the drill with (4) cones and (2) players. Set up a rectangle about 15 x 8 yards. Players will begin on opposite sides of the rectangle (15 yards away from each other).
The player that starts off with the ball will play defense, she will pass the ball outside of the box to the attacker, drop her stick and work hard to quickly make contact with her attacker as high as she can and as quickly as possible on an angle. She will do this 5 more times and then become the attacker.
After each partner has played defense, have the defender then utilize her lacrosse stick and concentrate on presenting the lane she wants the attacker to take by taking away the strong side with her stick and continuing to keep her defensive focus.
- Body Positioning: Approaching at an angle to force your attacker out of the box
- Good Footwork: Breaking down your steps to keep the attackers movement lateral (east/west vs. north south)
- Good Hand Positioning: To control your attacker, turn her back and slow her down.
Rollins College Head Coach, Dennis Short, led his team to a 2012 NCAA Final Four appearance and knows what can take your defense to the next level. Coach Short’s defensive instruction segment provides great information on how to dictate where you want your attacker to go rather than reacting to your attacker.
Staying behind the attacker is key when they tuck in. This allows your defender to make a check on the opponent’s stick. It will also help you block the attacker from rolling and giving your fellow defender the chance to come to help.
As the defender comes toward an attacker, line up the inside shoulder with the attacker’s shoulders. Run with the attacker in a trail position and keep your stick up. The defender will continue to stay behind and on the strong side of the attacker.
For better “team” defense, focus on the mechanics of the body and hand positioning of forcing. Always maintain a trail position!
Two different and effective dodges are covered in this segment by former collegiate player and current high school coach, Jason Breyo. These drills are great for developing the stick work and cradling needed for long poles. Practice maintaining possession of the ball while executing the dodges and improving your player’s agility.
Goalies can participate in these drills along with the defenders. These dodging drills can be used with Attack and Middie players as well.
The defenders are in a traditional line drill, facing each other, while Coach Breyo demonstrates how to perform each dodge and then the players practice the moves.
Don’t expect perfect execution, but with emphasis on the proper principles and techniques, the players’ skills will develop over time.
Mark Petrone was part of the coaching staff that led The Haverford School to a 2011 LaxPower High School Boys Lacrosse National Championship title. Coach Petrone develops his players’ shooting and the team’s offense. Using this drill will reinforce correct player and ball movement.
There are two separate lines of players, each twenty yards above GLE and on the hash marks (five to ten yards outside of the pipes) with another player closer to the goal – approximately five to ten yards above the right pipe and at the hash marks.
To begin, the top player on the right passes to the top player on the left who dodges towards the cage. He turns and passes back to the initial feeder who has moved towards the middle (between the two hash lines). He then passes the ball down to the player that began closer to the cage for a shot. This drill incorporates dodging and then reversing the ball from one side of the cage to the other by passing back to the top player.
Remind the dodger and the player closer to the cage to stay wide in order to spread the defense and create space for shooting.
In this week’s edition of All Access, we visit Durham, North Carolina for a behind-the-scenes look at a Duke men’s basketball practice. Follow along as head coach Mike Krzyzewski leads his squad through a series of 3-on-3 drills. This particular practice session stems from Duke’s 2009-10 National Championship season and features the likes of Kyle Singler, Jon Scheyer, and Nolan Smith.
The team splits up to two different courts. For this first drill, players go 3-on-0 full court off of a make or miss. In each rep, it’s key that the big hustles and runs the length of the floor. On the other end, the goal is to throw it ahead, look for the post, and play off the post.
Keys: Go right to the rim off the transition break. Don’t slow down and set up a play. Get the ball right to the post as quickly as possible.
This time the defense enters. Whichever team gets the initial rebound is on offense. The goal remains exactly the same in regards to getting the ball into the post for a scoring opportunity.
3-on-3 Half Court
Once again, the goal remains the same: Get the ball into the post for a high percentage opportunity. Also, listen in as Coach K offers some key advice pertaining to taking chances in practice: “This is practice right now. Take your left-handed hook, even if you go 0-for-20 today. This is what we practice. You need to come up with these kind of moves.”
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “All Access Duke Basketball Practice National Championship Season.” To check out the latest videos in our All Access lineup, including a new DVD series featuring UNC coach Roy Williams, click here.