Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Canadian influence

Here's a great read from Lacrosse Magazine.
During the last live field session of the US Lacrosse National Convention on Jan. 22, a goalie was dressed to the nines in his bulky box lacrosse gear, waiting to enter a drill. Jamie Munro, the former Denver coach and indoor pro, led a simulated practice with a group of field players, explaining during a 3-on-2 exercise how to "integrate the two-man game" into what they were doing and the nuances of picks. And grizzled Canadian national team coaches past and present, Johnny Mouradian and Dave Huntley, chatted off to the side.
Earlier in his own speaking session titled "The Convergence and Integration of Indoor and Field Lacrosse," Mouradian, the general manager of the National Lacrosse League's Philadelphia Wings, a former five-time coach of the Canadian national field team, and current president of the newly formed American Indoor Lacrosse Association, said to a room of coaches, "I'm glad you all are here because you realize the big movement that is going on."
Indeed, it's hard to follow NCAA lacrosse and not see one Canadian or another darting around the field, and having a significant impact. More than 200 Canadians are at United States colleges playing the outdoor field game. They grew up playing indoor, or box, lacrosse -- the game played in converted ice hockey rinks featuring 5-on-5 play with goalies, 4' by 4'9" goals, no long poles, and a 30-second shot clock. And they've brought their unique style built from that environment to the U.S., leaving their footprint on the college game.
Guys like Tom Marechek come to mind and just recently, Stony Brook midfielder Kevin Crowley, from New Westminster, British Columbia. He is Lacrosse Magazine's preseason player of the year and was drafted No. 1 overall by the Hamilton Nationals of Major League Lacrosse the weekend of the convention.

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