Coach B's Lax Blog

Lacrosse – Anything & Everything – What else is there?

Archive for May, 2011

Available in all shapes and sizes….

Posted by Barry Marenberg on May 24, 2011

I’m a huge proponent of helping the sport of lacrosse grow (and grow and grow).  One of my favorite t-shirts is from LacrosseAllStars.com and say’s GROW THE GAME.  I love it that more and more boys (and girls!) are starting to play the game each year.  I watched both quarterfinal games on Saturday and typically I “watch” the game but don’t listen to the commentators.  At one point, I did, however, catch a quick exchange between Eamon McAnaney and Quint Kessenich that resonated strongly with me.

Over the last 5 years as a boys lax coach in NJ I have gained new players every season.  Oftentimes I hear from current players or through the grapevine that so-and-so will be joining the team next year but he is not athletic, too small, etc.  If I don’t know a player I immediately dismiss such hearsay.   During Saturday’s NCAA game between Cornell and UVA, McAnaney and Kessenich hit it right on the head when they were discussing how size and strength is really not a determinant for overall success as a lacrosse player.  All a player does need is SPEED.  If a player has speed, all the other lacrosse skills can be learned and mastered with practice.   THAT I have seen first-hand as well.  Some of these new boys that come to me every year are small and some have never played an organized sport before BUT most of these new players have SPEED.  With the speed in place, any coach can teach the fundamentals and necessary skills to be mastered.  I have seen this first-hand many times.  Some of my best and most improved players had nothing more than speed when they started.  To this day, some are still considered small in size, but they make up for their lack of size or strength with their speed and ability to beat their man using that speed.

When my Saturday mail arrived just after the Cornell/UVA game had ended, I was flipping through my just arrived INSIDE LACROSSE magazine and right there in Editor John Jiloty’s column was an article about SPEED and how lacrosse has not yet become like other major sports where participants can be eliminated due to lack of size or strength.  Agree!

At least at the youth and middle school ages, lets continue to encourage young athletes to try the sport.  If they have the speed, they can learn the skills and can no doubt end up being a top-notch lacrosse player by the time they reach high school.

See you on the field!

– Coach B

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This blog is moving up in the lax world… and lax on TV this weekend.

Posted by Barry Marenberg on May 19, 2011

First off, Coach B’s Lax Blog (the one you are reading right now!) is now a featured lacrosse blog in the Blogroll on Lacrosse Playground (www.lacrosseplayground.com)!  – Lacrosseplayground.com is a must-read website for any lacrosse fan!  If you are not visiting lacrosseplayground.com daily then you are truly missing out!

Second,  more great NCAA Division 1 lacrosse on TV this weekend.  This is great stuff people!  Last weekend’s games were awesome and it can only get better from here.  There are 4 quarterfinal games this weekend – 2 on Saturday and 2 on Sunday – all are on ESPN2:

Saturday:
Game1 – UVA vs. Cornell at noon
Game 2 – Denver vs. Hopkins at 2:30pm

Sunday:
Game 1 – Maryland vs. Syracuse at noon
Game 2 – Duke vs. Notre Dame at 2:30pm

There were so many things I saw in last weekend’s games where I said to myself (or sometimes yelled out loud!!): “I hope my players are watching this!!”

See you on the field!

– Coach B

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It truly is never over … UNTIL ITS OVER

Posted by Barry Marenberg on May 18, 2011

I am a huge proponent of playing until you hear the whistle.  I tell my players year after year to keep playing until you hear a whistle.  If the Ref throws the flag and its a play-on, then PLAY ON until you hear the whistle.  Furthermore, I have expounded upon my players numerous times to play your heart out until the very last second of the game.  The game has not ended until the final horn blows and the Ref ends the game.

Tuesday night’s Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference semifinal between Boys’ Latin and Gilman is just such an example that supports my point!  In this game, the 2nd ranked Gilman Greyhounds scored three man-down goals in the final 1 minute of regulation to tie the game and then went on to seal the deal in overtime to defeat the 4th ranked Boy’s Latin Lakers, 7-6.

No doubt in my mind that the Gilman players left everything they had on the field that night.  Not to take ANYTHING away from Boy’s Latin as I have no doubt they gave it their all, but once again the lesson holds that it “ain’t over until it’s over!”  DON’T EVER FORGET THAT!!

The video of the overtime goal can be viewed below.  I get goosebumps watching it!!

See you on the field!

– Coach B

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Another great play from this weekend’s NCAA playoffs.

Posted by Barry Marenberg on May 17, 2011

Following my previous post (below) showing some great plays from this weekend’s playoff games, here’s one more.  Watch the awesome finesse, aggressiveness and stick work of Mark Matthews of Denver (#22):

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How can anyone not love this sport?!

Posted by Barry Marenberg on May 16, 2011

I really hope many of my players got to watch some of the NCAA playoff games this past weekend because they were some great lacrosse games.  If you haven’t already seen Maryland’s hidden ball trick play, here it is:

And these great plays are not just limited to the college level!  Thanks to Janet Barth and Leigh Anderson for sending me a link to this awesome 80 yard goal scored by a defenseman at  Gonzaga H.S. in Washington last Tuesday night:

More reasons why its hard for anyone not to love this sport!!

See you on the field!
– Coach B

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NCAA Division I Lacrosse Tournament on TV starting 5/14 – WATCH IT!

Posted by Barry Marenberg on May 13, 2011

As I’ve said many times in the past, a great deal can be learned from watching elite lacrosse players.  The NCAA Division I lacrosse tournament starts this weekend and ALL the games will be carried on the ESPN family of networks (ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU).  I strongly suggest that our players spend at least some time this weekend watching some of these games.  The players in these games started out just like our young players.  Everything that takes place in these elite level games is based upon what we teach the players presently.

See below for the this weekend’s First Round schedule.

Saturday May 14, 2011:
Hofstra at No. 3 Johns Hopkins, noon (ESPN2/ESPN3.com)
Penn at No. 4 Notre Dame, 2:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
Delaware at No. 5 Duke, 5 p.m. (ESPNU)
Hartford at No. 2 Cornell, 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)

Sunday May 15, 2011
Maryland at No. 8 North Carolina, 1 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN3.com)
Bucknell at No. 7 Virginia, 3 p.m. (ESPNU)
Villanova at No. 6 Denver, 5:15 p.m. (ESPNU)
Siena at No. 1 Syracuse, 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)

After the weekend I’ll update the blog again for the next round based on this weekend’s results.

HONOR THE GAME!

– Coach B

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Zack Greer shorts to support Autism

Posted by Barry Marenberg on May 4, 2011

Last month I uploaded a post about a new pair of shorts being sold by the Zack Greer Foundation to raise funds for Autism. The Foundation ran into some issues and the ordering of the shorts were put on hold.  All issues have now been remedied and you can now proceed to order a pair (or pairs!) of these great shorts.  My original post is reprinted below. 

We all know well how crazy lacrosse players go for the funky sublimated shorts that are all over the place these days. I’d like to draw your attention to a wicked new pair of shorts that I know our lacrosse players will love AND which support a great cause.

For those of you who don’t know Zack Greer, he is a former All-American lacrosse player from Duke and Bryant University and currently plays professional lacrosse for the Minnesota Swarm.  Not only is Zack a great guy, and extremely passionate lacrosse player, he is also passionate about supporting families who need assistance in caring for their children with autism. The Zack Greer Foundation was set up with the commitment to help improve the quality of life for those affected, and their families, by raising funds and awareness for the Austism Spectrum Disorder.

In order promote the cause and raise money, Zack Greer and the Zack Greer Foundation have teamed up with LaxAllStars.com and Pro Athletics to design a LIMITED EDITION custom pair of lacrosse shorts that are now being offered in a pre-sale through the LaxAllStars Store by clicking this link: http://bit.ly/ZackGreerShorts.  Info about Zack Greer and his foundation, etc. can be viewed here: Zack Greer and Autism Info . The profits generated from the sale of these shorts will be donated to the Zack Greer Foundation to assist in providing assistance to those in need and awareness to the lacrosse community, and the general public.

The design incorporates the Zack Greer Foundation logo, an 88 with a puzzle piece inside it, as well as the LacrosseAllStars logo. The colors are those of the ZG Foundation (blue) and hot pink with navy. The honeycomb is a fantastic background layer that reminds us of all the strength required to do the right thing.

Please join Zack, LacrosseAllStars.com and me, in supporting this worthy cause by purchasing a pair (or two, or three!) of the Zack Greer Foundation Shorts and wearing them as much as possible! They are awesome shorts. By spreading the word and getting involved we can all make a difference in the lives of those affected by autism.

The  pre-sale ends Tuesday, May 17th so don’t delay!  Shorts will take up to 6 weeks to manufacture and ship.  Order Now! Click here to order: http://bit.ly/ZackGreerShorts

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