Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 5/30/12
Would a college player’s overall lacrosse game be better served by playing indoor NLL style lacrosse during the summer?
It’s a relatively new idea that seems to be gaining a lot of support. American Indoor Lacrosse Staffers Johnny Mouradian (Head Coach of the Philadelphia Wings), Steven Holmes (UVA ‘05 and current Wings defenseman), and Scott Gabrielsen (Former Wings Captain) believe that’s exactly what college and high school players should be concentrating on to improve their all around game.
American Indoor Lacrosse wants players to be the best they can be outdoors, and they believe playing indoor, NLL style 5v 5 indoor lacrosse is a fabulous way to accomplish this. They are not alone in this thinking either.
St. Joseph’s University Head Coach Taylor Wray has publicly endorsed the AIL College League as the premier training option for his players this summer.
“I am thrilled for my players to have the opportunity to play indoor lacrosse over the summer months through the AIL (college) program,” said Wray, former captain of the Wings. “When I think about the benefits of playing in a confined space, shooting on the tighter goals, not to mention the fact that they get so many more touches as the ball rarely goes out of play, it is easy to see why the indoor players develop a higher skill level than traditional field players. You couple that with the physical play and up and down nature of the indoor game and it is a great tool to hone your skills.”
This summer American Indoor Lacrosse is holding an 8-week college league on Wednesday nights at United Sports in Downingtown, as well as an 8-week high school league at BucksMont Indoor Sports Center, Hatfield, PA.
AIL College 8 Week: Wednesday nights. June 13th-August 1
Where: United Sports, Downingtown, PA
AIL High School 8 week: Tuesday nights. June 12th- July 31st
Where: BucksMont Sports Center, Hatfield, PA
Register for either now at WWW.AILACROSSE.NET
Contact: Sholmes@ailacrosse.net (215-219-2654)
“Typically the summer has been looked at as a time for pick up summer leagues, and tournaments down at the shore,” says AIL regional manager Steven Holmes, who is a Germantown Academy graduate, went on to captain the UVA team in ’05, and most recently is playing for the Wings. “When I was younger I loved playing outdoors during the summer and I think those experiences are important.
“It is a fun way to maintain your skills. However why wouldn’t summer also be a good time to expand your game, lacrosse IQ, and the whole way you perceive the game of lacrosse. I am never burnt out on lacrosse because playing indoors is so different. And the great thing is I am a better player outdoors in countless ways once I step outside after playing for the Wings.”
Locally, the high schools are catching up on to the benefits just as quick. American Indoor Lacrosse trained players from Downingtown West, Central Bucks East, and Upper Dublin this past winter for eight weeks each. Those teams went a combined 53-10 this past spring.
Downingtown West coach Tommy Hannum shared his thoughts after AIL’s training session with his team: “Our kids were pumped coming out of the AIL training and couldn’t have been better prepared for our season. The enthusiasm from Head Coach Johnny Mouradian, Steve (Holmes), Dan (Dawson) & Kevin Crowley was a great foundation for the start of the season and gave our kids a whole new perspective on the game.”
Scott Gabrielsen, a former field All American and Wings player feels the indoor lacrosse is changing the game.
“It is no secret the impact Canadian Box Lacrosse players are having on the NCAA Collegiate lacrosse scene,” he said. “Canadian-born players liter the top 10 in scoring year in and year out. Our kids need to start playing the same game that is making them (Canadians) better. It is time to give our son’s the same advantage.”
Do you want in? Spots are limited but still open for the College 8-week league at United States Training Center and the High School 8-week league at BucksMont Indoor Sports Center this summer. The college league already has committed players from many of our top local colleges and returning local HS players who took their skills outside the state to some of the top programs in the country.
Each league is formatted with three weeks of skill training with coaching from Philadelphia Wings players and coaches. Followed is a five week league with referees, shot clocks, and fully outfitted goalies and 4 x4 indoor nets. This is NOT a Field Indoors league. No bad habits allowed here! The setting is as professional and intense as it gets!