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Archives by Tag 'John Nostrant'

Essential Goalie Drills: Footwork and Warm-Ups

By adam.warner - Last updated: Tuesday, April 9, 2013

In this week’s player development feature, follow along with Haverford School (PA) boys lacrosse coach Travis Loving as he reveals goalie footwork drills and his go-to in-season warm-up. In addition to reinforcing proper technique and fundamentals, these drills will get your players adequately prepared to cover every angle of the cage.

Goalie Footwork Drills

We begin with a series of goalie footwork drills that place an emphasis on technique and will help players explode to the ball. Notice that all drills are performed with a lacrosse stick in hand.

Side to Side – Players hop from side to side with quick feet across a designated line on the field.

Right Foot Side to Side – The drill is the same as before but now players should only use their RIGHT foot.

Left Foot Side to Side – The drill is the same as before but now players should only use their LEFT foot.

Side to Side Mixed – Start with side to side both feet and then the coach will direct which foot to use from there.

Front to Back – This drill is similar to before, but now players will be going front to back with their steps instead of side to side.

Front to Back Left Foot – Now players should only use their LEFT foot.

Front to Back Right Foot – Now players should only use their RIGHT foot.

Figure Eight – Players should now jump with two feet in a figure eight pattern.

Figure Eight in Reverse – Now do figure eights in reverse order. Start at the back right.

Figure Eight on One Foot – Now do figure eights on just one foot.


Formal Warm-Up

Check out this formal goalie warm-up done every day at Haverford. A coach will start by shooting against the goalie in net from about 15 yards out. He will start with high shots on both sides of the net — stick-side high and off stick-side high. By doing this, the goalie doesn’t know where the next shot is going. Also, the coach will always walk around the field and shoot from different spots to mix up the angle.

Overall, the coach won’t make too many adjustments when it comes to positioning or corrections. Meanwhile, it’s key to make sure the last three shots are on cage. From here, the coach will then shoot around the hips and go around the horn once again. It’s critical that the goalie can’t anticipate the shot on net before it’s even released.


The previous clips can all be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “High School Coaching Academy: Training the Lacrosse Goalie.” To check out more goaltender-oriented videos, simply visit our lacrosse library

Offensive Lacrosse: 2 Efficient Mid-Range Shooting Drills to Boost Production

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

Looking to improve your offensive production? Implement these efficient mid-range shooting drills to your lacrosse practices this season. Follow along as Haverford School assistant coach Mark Petrone runs through each rep with his team at full speed. Great for midfielders and attackers alike, the following drills ensure players get a ton of reps in a short time while improving overall shooting accuracy.

Island Curl

Lacrosse teams often run shooting drills from the top down, but it’s also important to work on drills from the bottom up, especially for attackmen. In this drill, players will dodge up from the end line to about “7 and 7” or “5 and 5”, what we call the “island.” From here, players will roll back, curl off a cone, and get away a mid-range shot on the run or curling to the goal.

We will put a few cones on the island where the players need to get to. The next player in line should get moving as soon as the previous player starts his roll back to the goal. You can also add a second shot to this, for instance a curl shot right after shooting the first one.

Reinforces: Dodging from X, inside shooting, mid-range shooting, and coming from behind the goal to out front and delivering a nice accurate curl shot (with a second shot, which helps attackers be alert and think a little bit).


Figure 8 Drill

This is a versatile drill that’s helpful on seven-yard shots. It involves a lot of stickwork skills and is a great conditioner too. Also, it requires constant movement as players must catch a pass while running and then shoot it while running. Players will curl around cone and catch it right after the curl for a quick shot.

You can run this drill with as many players as you’d like to. For this example, we will proceed with four players: Two feeders and two shooters. When the players start to get tired, we will have them switch up.

You can also mix things up by going for long-range shots, mid-range shots, and tight space shots. You can even put feeders behind the goal so the players can step down and shoot it. Look to add some fakes to the shot before shooting, tight shots with both hands, and then shots using outside and inside hands. Clearly, this is a very versatile drill.


The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD ”Efficient Shooting Drills for Lacrosse Practice” with John Nostrant. Check out more shooting videos by visiting our lacrosse library.

All Access Haverford Lacrosse Practice: Warm-Ups & 3-on-2 Drills

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

In the latest edition of All Access, we head back to Haverford, Pennsylvania for a behind-the-scenes look at a Haverford School boys’ lacrosse practice. Follow along as head coach John Nostrant leads his team through a number of warm-up and odd-man full-field drills.

Don’t miss this opportunity to learn several effective drills that are a practice staple for one of the nation’s most renowned high school programs. Then look for ways to implement them with your own squad as you gear up for another lacrosse campaign.

Warm-ups – Passing and Stickwork

On the heels of a pre-pracitice pep talk, Haverford immediately gets into passing and stickwork drills. While the offensive unit starts in “Diamond”, the defense gets things going with footwork and ground ball drills. The defensive unit first focuses on changing positions based on ball movement around the perimeter.

Next in Diamond, the offensive players are working on meeting the pass, rolling back, and protecting the stick. Notice how the outside guys are working on long passes around the perimeter and quick ball movement while the inside guys are making rapid-fire passes between teammates set out about 10-12 yards apart.


Notre Dame Drill

In the Notre Dame Drill, players pick up ground balls, kick the ball, move it, and handle pressure in a high traffic scenario. This is a nonstop ground ball drill where half the team in the same area of the field. The drill, which goes for about one minute per repetition, works on each player’s ability to handle pressure and get the ball out of their own end of the field. Go for about 4 reps total.


3-on-2 Continuous

With this final drill, players are coming down on a continuous 3-on-2 break where you got two top guys and a crease guy and one of the top guys will try to drive it down the side. You always want that middle guy to get down low on the high crease. If you do, try to pop it up through the middle. If the top guy tries to drive it across the top, then the crease guy comes out behind him. Make sure you designate a crease guy and he gets up the middle early.

As Coach Nostrant explains, there are a couple of different ways to approach a 3-on-2. For instance, you can drive it deep or you can put a guy inside and roll him out. If you drive it, the crease guy can pop out on the other side, while the other side drags it.

Notes: Look to play to points and make this drill competitive. Haverford will often put juniors and seniors up against freshmen and sophomores to get the competitive juices flowing.


The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “All Access Haverford Lacrosse Practice.” To check out our entire All Access catalog, head over to our lacrosse library

All Access Haverford Lacrosse: Pre-Practice Drills and 6-on-6 Action

By adam.warner - Last updated: Tuesday, May 15, 2012

In this week’s edition of All Access, we take you back to Haverford, Pennsylvania for a behind-the-scenes look at a Haverford School boys’ lacrosse practice. Follow along as head coach John Nostrant leads his squad through a number of team pre-practice drills focusing on defensive fundamentals and 6-on-6 half field simulations.

Pre-Practice Blocking

We start things off with a few pre-practice drills on the defensive end. This opening blocking drill forces players to go 1-on-1 from behind the cage, but the offensive player does not have a stick. The objective for defenders is to use their stick skills and fundamentals to keep the offensive player from gaining certain areas and to force them away from the cage. Three cones are set out on each side of the goal (in the shape of an arc). These cones provide defenders with a guideline for where they should prevent the offensive player from moving.

Tips for Defenders: Do whatever you can to get around the cone and grab the ball. Find that leverage spot and get inside that offensive player’s glove. Don’t let the attacker get top side, either. To help with this, get your stick up field, placed on your man’s back, and wheel him around with the goal to get him back behind the GLE. As for the offensive guys, look to go around the cone and get top side.


Slide Progressions

In this slide progression series, we have an offensive player going up against a number of defensive players. As the offensive player makes a variety of moves, the defensive guys work on their slides based on where the offensive person goes. There are four designated spots, so make sure that players change spots each time. Also have the first two players start back-to-back to commence the drill.


6-on-6 Action

At this point in practice, Haverford is looking to implement certain schemes in a half field setting to prepare for its upcoming games and the playoffs. The goal here is to throw in some different wrinkles defensively and offensively. First, the squad will go for about 10 minutes vs. man-to-man defense and then finish up with 5 or 10 minutes against the zone.

This is a prime opportunity for the offense to work on limiting turnovers, an area of concern for the team lately. A few minutes in, the team loses focus and is forced to run sprints. When they get back into things, Coach Nostrant reemphasizes handling the ball and passing and catching with authority — even when you’re getting tired.


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 library, click here

3 Key Goalie Drills That Focus on Game Situations

By adam.warner - Last updated: Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Whether it’s a fast break, traffic on the crease, or making crisp outlets against aggressive rides, a goaltender needs to be ready for every type of game situation. In this week’s player development feature, Haverford coach Travis Loving  breaks down three key drills that practice tough scenarios goaltenders often face in a game. In addition to reinforcing proper technique and fundamentals, these game-saving drills will have your players able to cover every angle.

Defending the Fast Break

We’ll begin by mocking a fast break in a game. The ball will come down to the middie, then move to the point guy, and then he would throw to the player nearest to the GLE. From here, this player will often throw a cross-crease pass to the backside player for a shot. This is the evolution of a typical fast break and a goaltender needs to be prepared to defend that GLE pass and shot.

First, it’s essential that the goalie “steps down the line.” So with his left foot, the goalie will step on the goalline and get across as quickly as possible. Remember, try not to go the long way (like an arc). Try to stay on the line. Also, when the goalie comes across, have them keep their stick in the ready position at all times. Often, goalies will dip down with the stick and come back up.

Meanwhile, when the ball is in tight, have the goalie move up and down with their body, so they don’t get out of position. To help with this movement, place your feet like a “V” and get them a little wider rather than right next to each other.

This fast break drill basically involves two offensive players and the goalie and mimics the cross-crease pass on the fast break near the GLE. Have your offensive players try shots high, low, bouncing, etc. Mix it up. Then switch sides with the passing/shooting.



The following drill practices those frequent situations when there’s a crowd in front of the goalie or a screen low and the goalie must look around these distractions as best as he/she can. Start by getting a player to set up right in front of the crease. Next, have another player or coach shoot from about 10-15 yards out.

In screen situations, it’s preferred that the goalie looks toward his off-stick-side as opposed to his stick-side. Remember, you’re more likely to get scored on this side. But keep in mind, depending on how the screens are set up, sometimes you may not have a choice. The best remedy is to practice for these situations and be ready for anything that comes your way.


Outlet Pass

Finally, it’s time to practice making crisp outlet passes with attackers in your face. Start out having a coach shoot on net. After each save, have the goalie immediately clear the ball to a teammate down the field with an opponent right in his face. Be sure to get your goalies to follow through on each outlet pass. This will also pave the way for potential interference calls on opposing attackmen and a free clear for your side.


The previous clips can all be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “High School Coaching Academy: Training the Lacrosse Goalie.” To check out more goalie-oriented videos, visit our lacrosse library today. 


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