We worked with some pro players last week, and this is one of the first drills they did. The kids had tons of fun going to the goal in loose ball unsettled situations. Give it a try!
When we get to work with really experienced and successful players and coaches, we're copying everything they do. If it's good enough for them, it's good enough for us. We're always surprised how simple the drills they work on really are. This is a great drill to combine ground balls, passing, catching, and defense into a fun, fast, competitive scoring situation! It's also great for "Situational Awareness"!
Ground Balls Win Games.
Every good lacrosse coach knows that. Ground balls equal extra possessions and extra chances to score. If you're not winning loose balls, you're probably not winning that game. If you're coaching younger and inexperienced players, the ball is probably on the ground a lot. So give your players tons of chances to compete for the ball in practice!
"Scoop it, and Move it!"
ALWAYS pass after picking up a loose ball. This is a hard and fast rule for most coaches. It's non-negotiable. Loose balls attract extra players and pressure. So as soon as you pick it up, pass to a safe stick right away! So many good things happen when your players do this. Bad things happen when your beginning players try to run through two, three, or four defenders after picking up a ground ball. Don't run it, pass!
3-on-2 Drills are the Sweet Spot!
2-on-1 drills can be too easy. 4-on-3 can often be too difficult, even for high school players. 3-on-2 drills are where most of your players will be challenged enough that it's fun, and not too difficult that they don't learn anything. 3-on-2 drills are great for youth and high school teams, in practice, and pregame warm-ups. Ever heard of "West Gennies", the greatest drill ever created? It's a 3-on-2. Even college and pro coaches in field and box lacrosse spend tons of time in 3-on-2 situations.
HERE'S THE DRILL:
Figure 1.) Start your players in four lines on the Sideline, Midfield Line, or Endline, with another line somewhere on the other side of the field. Two lines will form one team (Blue 1 and 2 here). The other two lines will be the other team (Red 1 and 2). This is a very common way to create competitive situations in your drills.