denver marquette college lacrosse 2016

2-3-1 Alley Dodge with a “Shallow” Clear Through

We've seen this simple play several times this season from college and Pro teams. It's an easy way to give your players space to Dodge, and get open for good, easy shots up top!

(Cover photo courtesy of Di Miller Photography)

We first saw Marquette and Maryland run this play in the NCAA Tournament. Then we noticed the New York Lizards running it in their MLL Playoff Semifinal. If the Pros are doing it, you probably should too.

Shallow Clear Throughs are a simple way to get two players to exchange and rotate to get open, and create space for the man with the ball. This is an easier offensive skill to teach younger players than the more complex 3-man or 6-man triangle rotations that make up the traditional 2-3-1 Motion Offense.

Teach your players to "Clear Through" for the man with the ball, so he has space to dodge without running right into a Double-Team. This is one of the fundamental skills of playing team Offense. If attacking players "Off Ball" (without the ball) move out of the way, their Defenders have to follow out of the way also.


2 3 1 formation alley dodge shallow clear through offense play

Figure 1.) How do you know when it's a "Good Time!" to start your offense? We usually start this play when the ball goes from one side of the field to the other, right-to-left or left-to-right.

Draw the Defense to one side of the field, then move the ball to attack the other side where there is more space and fewer players.

The Crease Attacker (Blue 3) should "Stretch" to the back pipe of the goal. He needs to create space for the Dodger and draw his Defender away from the ball.

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