Offensive and Defensive Philosophies

To really implement effective specific offensive and defensive philosophies, it is critical to have a good idea of the capabilities of all of the players involved.  However there are some basic ideas that should be followed regardless of the skill set of the players.

Offensively we will make sure that we stress “Playing Lacrosse not Lacrosse Plays”.  We will implement multiple offensive sets and discuss the advantages if using each of the different sets.  We will even discuss some initial movement from each set, but that is as close as we will come to “scripted plays”.  The concepts that we will install will allow each player to understand what is happening on and off ball in each set and therefore allow them to operate a smooth dynamic offense no matter what set we are in.  Specific points we will discuss are:

  • Areas of attack from each set
  • On ball strategy (dodging and 2-man game)
  • Off ball strategy
  • Field balance

Defensively we will be teaching and stressing a few different concepts.  Good body and stick position depending on the area of field, communication for the entire defense (including the goaltender) and proper stick checking.  We will also go over some solid take away checks that can be used in different situations for the right defenders.  We will also go over the ideas and concepts behind each different defense.  This will allow the players to truly understand why we use each defense and how to take advantage of the benefits of each different scheme.  We will specifically adress:

  • Basic Defense (man to man)
  • Pressure Defense
  • Shut off Defense
  • Zone Defense

We will also discuss Different slide packages:

  • Crease Slide to the middle
  • Crease Slide to the alley
  • Adjacent Slide

I am a firm believer in an active and engaged defense.  This is key to the success of any of the above mentioned defensive schemes.  I am also a proponent of the defense starting the offense so it is imperative that all of the defensemen and goalies spend a much time and effort on the stick skills as the rest of the team.