Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

Lacrosse in the UK is beginning to reap the rewards for the endless amounts of effort and planning in its INTOLacrosse scheme.

The English Lacrosse Association’s new coaching regime all has been hitting Universities and Schools since last summer and has overseen the rise of many new teams as a result.

Bournemouth and Falmouth are the two newest teams in the South West, with English Lacrosse Development Officer, Will Finlayson, at the forefront of their success. The Bath Lacrosse player travels to the respective Universities on a weekly basis to carry out basic Lacrosse skills sessions, along with activities to encourage more and more players to take up the sport.

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Joe 'Rampage' Jackson ready to go into battle (pic, E.Fish)

Epic is often a word bandied around far too easily in my opinion, but last Sunday was definitely one of epic proportions for me and the Bournemouth Lacrosse team – ignoring the 7am wake-up call that is!

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Bournemouth dejected after Cheltenham loss (pic, J.Hellier)

This week for Lacrosse has not been the best for me and Saturday just rubbed salt into the wound.

It all started on Monday, after happily announcing last week that I had restrung Rosie and she was looking great and what not; it turns out I was wrong. Ever since that bold statement I have been stressing and struggling to re-fix her. Where I tried looking at videos on YoutTube of how to re-string a Lacrosse goalie stick, this seems to have thrown me off in the wrong direction. At first I had a stick that was whipping so much I couldn’t throw it more than 10 feet in the air. Then after alterations and once again telling people I had fixed her once and for all, I messed it up further so the ball started catching on the bottom shooting string.

Monday came and I was sure that this time I had definitely fixed it, but after five minutes of training I realised these thoughts were misguided once more. Our INTO Lacrosse coach Will then took a look at it, only for him to laugh in my face at the poor job I had done at restringing the bottom of the head. My excuse was that the video had told me to do this, in truth I was just terrible at it and doing my own thing. Taking his advice into account I tightened up the bottom strings and took Rosie to Wednesday’s training session with reserved optimism. By this point I had decided to change the two shooting strings from the double V that was in last weeks blog, to two curved top shooters with a sidewall string as a third shooter.

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(Above) Piper's birthday celebrations

In a week which saw no action Lacrosse-wise, there was still plenty to keep the team occupied including Captain’s birthday night on Sunday, at the SuperBowl and Goddard’s mess of a party the night before.

All the good stuff this week, however, has been overshadowed by the events occurring from 7am on Saturday. As the first real national public showing of Lacrosse, this caused excitement to all fans of the sport, including Bournemouth Universities team. It even had some of us calling for a group viewing as we all anticipated – bar the cynical ones among us – a great example of the sport we have all grown to love. In our heads there were images of huge hits, great goals, reaction saves and top skills for the sports fans of the UK to feast their eyes upon. Reality brought a whole different image of Lacrosse as we all know it.

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Bournemouth celebrate in pub after the game (pic, B.Piper)

If you didn’t already gather from the frantic updating of statuses and tweets in the last day or so, Bournemouth University Men’s Lacrosse won their first ever full game on Saturday and we haven’t shut up about it since!

In my many years of playing football before hand I can definitely say that no team I’ve played for has had as much team spirit and heart as BULC do. What we have managed to do over the last few months, from picking up a stick for the first time, to being able to dominate a team who beat the team we lost to very convincingly last week, is incredible. Without sucking up to him too much, most, if not all of this has to go down to Ben Piper. His enthusiasm for the sport has rubbed off on all of us and got us hooked straight away – probably shying many of us away from uni deadlines etc. but having fun doing it.

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Rosie in tape and hard mesh (pic, J.Hellier)

As far as Lacrosse goes, this week has been pretty slow. A decent stick skills session on Monday, which saw me pick up a short stick for the first time since the eye incident, was followed by the news that our game was cancelled on Saturday due to a lack of numbers – probably just as well considering our two best players would have been missing!

This was followed by a lethargic strength and conditioning class for me in which I couldn’t even finish the shuttle run at the end – pretty pathetic really. However, Wednesday’s training session was a huge confidence boost after the humiliation of Saturday’s game in Swansea. In what everyone agreed was one of the best training sessions we’ve ever had – mainly down to the practice game we had being a big success – I felt more comfortable and, well, in the words of the Lonely Island, “Like a Boss”, more than I had ever felt in my brief spell as a goalie so far. As soon as the first shot came towards me, I felt the urge to really step out, or ‘explode’ to it to make the save, something I have been taught but never really carried out with aggression. From that point on I felt a rush of adrenaline every time I was getting shots fired at me – even feeling the need to bang the rage cage as the attack-man ran round the back of my goal, in the hope of putting them off. It was the first real time I’ve felt in myself that I could actually become a semi-decent Lacrosse goalkeeper – which is a confidence, NOT arrogance, that I have learnt that a goalkeeper really needs.

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Josh Carter Walrus drinking challenge (pic, Jamie Hellier)

It’s been a while since I last posted on here, but in all honesty not a lot has happened in my my life Lacrosse-wise in the last few weeks.

The Christmas break was great – relaxing, full of food, friends, family and more food. The only downside was my Gran being in hospital and my Granddad being ill at the same time, but thankfully they are OK now! The one thing that stood out to me over the holidays, however, was how obsessed I now am with Lacrosse. I mean it’s ridiculous now I think of it.

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