2019 will be the third season of 8U soft lacrosse. Soft Lacrosse is a Co-Ed beginners league for boys and girls that emphasizes having fun while teaching the basics of the game of lacrosse. It is a developmental program that is made up of 8U players.
The Club will conduct player evaluations the first few weeks of practice prior to making player assignments that commensurate with skill level in their age bracket. We strive to field teams that are competitive with the other lacrosse clubs in our region.
Q: How long has the FLA been developing lacrosse in our area?
A: Lacrosse in the Folsom-Cordova area started its existence in late 2004 and played its first competitive season in 2005. The 2007 season brought the first youth level team. In the spring of 2007 the Folsom Cordova Lacrosse Association was chartered and set up as a non-profit corporation. Our continued growth in the Folsom community resulted in us changing our name to the Folsom Lacrosse Association. Our growth potential will only be limited by the involvement of parents as volunteers and the availability of field space for practice and play.
Q: What is Lacrosse?
A: Lacrosse was invented by North American Indians who played with sticks made of wood and leather and a rock was used as the ball. The game became a (slightly less dangerous) substitute for warring between tribes to establish dominance. The Canadians also adopted the sport from the Indians in Northeastern America and it is their national sport, not hockey as is commonly believed. Modern lacrosse has been played by athletes in the United States and the British Commonwealth for over a century.
The sport of lacrosse is a combination of speed, and strength and draws from skills found in basketball, soccer and hockey. Anyone can play lacrosse--big or small. The game requires and rewards coordination and agility, not raw strength. Quickness and speed are two highly prized qualities in lacrosse. Lacrosse is fast-paced and full of action. Players run up and down the field with lots starts and stops, precision passes and dodges are routine in both men's and women's lacrosse. Lacrosse is played with a stick, called “the crosse”, which is used by the player to throw, catch and scoop the ball.
Lacrosse is one of the fastest growing team sports in the United States. US Lacrosse reports that its youth membership (ages 15 and under) has doubled since 1999 to over 60,000. The National Federation of State High School Associations reported that in 2001 better than 74,000 students played high lacrosse. With club teams, private schools, and states not yet having sanctioned lacrosse, high school-aged participation is actually much higher. Varsity collegiate participation has grown by one-third since 1995, and collegiate and post-collegiate club teams field thousands of players as well, with NCAA sanctioning play at the collegiate level. For more information please go to the US Lacrosse web site.
Q: Who plays lacrosse?
A: According the U.S. Lacrosse Association, youth and recreational programs playing both field and "soft" lacrosse are estimated at about 125,000 participants. US Lacrosse's 48 regional chapters indicated a total of 82,448 players participating in lacrosse at the youth level. Several areas of the country have youth programs but are not yet represented by a US Lacrosse chapter. Over 4,500 programs span the United States. Programs range in size from 50 to 15,000 children. Youth players range from 5 to 15 years of age.
Q: When does the season start?
A:The 2019 Folsom Lacrosse main season runs from mid-January to mid-May. We have CO-ED 8U Soft Lacrosse (Mar - May), Boy's 10U City League (Feb-May), 12U, 14U, High School, and Girl's 10U City League (Feb - May), 12U, 14U & High School.
Registration will be September 15 - October 31 for Youth and HS Registration
Register EARLY to guarantee a spot. Once registration closes you may not get on a team! DON'T DELAY!
Q: Why do we do evaluations?
A: The NCJLA (the governing body of Northern California Lacrosse) requires that clubs submit teams for the upcoming season by the first week of December. The NCJLA currently has 3 divisions within each age group to promote a competitive lacrosse experience for all ages and skill levels. They provide a set of guidelines (http://files.leagueathletics.com/Text/Documents/6490/21270.pdf) for determining playing levels for each player. We use the results of the evaluations to determine what division we will register each team in and what division each individual player should reside in.
Q: Who evaluates the players?
A: An open invitation is sent to the Folsom Lacrosse coaching staff (all ages and genders) in order to participate in evaluations. In addition, other members of the lacrosse community participate including coaches from the local high schools (Vista Del Lago, Oak Ridge), competitive leagues (ADVNC, Aces), and top area clubs (El Dorado Hills, Sacramento Stingers, Granite Bay) in our community. On average, each player gets at least 10 independent coaches evaluating them throughout the process. There are many coaches at each evaluation that have no "skin in the game" (not coaching at that particular age group or even with our program) when it comes to evaluating the players. Folsom Lacrosse goes to great lengths to ensure that we have reputable, unbiased, eyes evaluating each and every player.
Q: How are the evaluations conducted?
A: Typically, the week prior to Thanksgiving break, Folsom Lacrosse holds 2 separate 2 hour evaluations per age group. Both of these evaluations should be considered mandatory. Players are pre-grouped by members of the Board prior to the first evaluation and run through a series of drill stations to evaluate where they are in their lacrosse development (https://www.uslacrosse.org/athlete-development/athlete-development-model). The drill stations provide a small group look at each player to evaluate them based on their stick skills (catching, throwing, cradling, shooting), athleticism, lacrosse IQ communication, attitude, coachability, teamwork, footwork, etc. These drills are picked carefully to ensure that we get to see the "whole player", not just one facet of their development. The evaluators are instructed to move around to different groups in order to maximize the number of "looks" each player gets. After the small sided drills, the groups are put together and run through a series of team drills against the other groups. This provides each player with an opportunity to compete against other players that may be above or below their current level of development. At the end of the first evaluation, each player will have a grade (1 - 5) from each of the coaches. Those grades are then averaged out and are used to regroup for the second evaluation. The purpose of the second evaluation is the evaluators are looking to finalize a roster for each team in each division and ensure that there are no players that were regrouped incorrectly. The same drill format is used at the start of the second evaluation (small group drills). Evaluators are looking at the small group drills to see if any players were regrouped incorrectly and may move players around during this time. At this point, each group has certain players that are "on the bubble" for each division/team. The final part of the second evaluation is used to pair down/shore up the bubble players and get close to identifying the appropriate level for each player to play. At the end of the second evaluation, the scores are collected, averaged, and final average scores are created for each player.
Each team can only effectively carry a certain number of players to ensure adequate growth for every player in the program. As each position on the lacrosse field has it's own set of skills, there are limits on how many of each position can be on any given team while ensuring that every team has enough players to be competitive in their respective division. The final numbers are collected by the Board, evaluated, reevaluated, and evaluated again to finalize rosters and create teams that deliver the right level of lacrosse for each player's development.
A: Once the data is gathered and evaluated, Folsom Lacrosse Association registers the teams with the NCJLA for the upcoming season. This process can take a few weeks. Folsom Lacrosse Association will then publish the rosters on the website and communicate those rosters to the players/families.
During the regular Spring season we travel to other teams in the NCJLA. Games may be played in a variety of cities around the region including, but not limited to: Loomis, Elk Grove, Orangevale, Palo Alto, Chico, Yuba City, Redding, Stockton, and Nevada City. The NCJLA dictates the schedules and where we play.
Each team will play a minimum of 10 games but more likely around 12-15 games during the Spring season. We attempt to schedule about half of them as homes games at Livermore or Kemp 2; however, some teams will play fewer and some more games at home.
10U City League games are locally played on Friday evenings starting in mid-Mar. in locations like El Dorado Hills, Roseville, and Granite Bay.
Q: How do I start playing?
A: Register on our website. Membership is also required with US Lacrosse Association. Next, purchase your equipment, and optionally, check into some basic skills training held at one of the many camps or clinics that are run in the region.
Q: Why do I need to join US Lacrosse?
A: The US Lacrosse Association, in addition to being the main governing body for our sport, also provides insurance coverage for its members. This insurance is required by the NCJLA in order to practice or play with our league or other clinics/tournaments.
Q: What kind of equipment do I need?
A: Each player provides his own equipment including both protective gear and a
“ crosse” or stick. The protective gear required by the league and Folsom Lacrosse consists of:
- A lacrosse helmet (our colors are white with red visor)
- Mouth-guard – cannot be white or clear (have spares)
- Athletic supporter with cup
- Shoulder pads
- Arm/elbow pads
- Rib pads (optional but recommended)
- Lacrosse gloves
- Goalies need additional chest and throat-guard protection (provided by the FLA)
- A “crosse” or stick with a pocket
- Cleats (football or soccer will do) – keep tennis shoes in your bag too.
- Balls to practice with
- Women’s Lacrosse Stick (NCAA approved), not boys'/men's
- Protective Goggles (get cage style, not the see-through plastic type. We recommend Cascade Iris. Iris (standard) is preferred over Iris "Mini," unless player has very small facial structure.)
- Mouth-guard – cannot be white or clear (have at least two)
- Gloves (optional)
- Goalie gear is provided by the FLA
See our equipment section for more details.
Q: What kind of “Crosse” should I buy?
A: In the Boy's division there are three kinds of crosses including: short stick, used by attack and midfield players; long stick, used by defense and midfield players, and a goalie stick. The basic lacrosse skills can be best learned with the short stick, and the club requires all players to start with a short stick. The club has a few goalie sticks that will be loaned to players wishing to try the goalie position. The crosse consists of a head (basket and webbing) and handle. Both the heads and the handles come in a variety of styles and are made from a wide assortment of materials…which means that they come in a wide variety of prices as well.
In the girl's division there are a variety of sticks to choose from. See a retailer that specializes in Lacrosse to get help choosing the right stick. Girl's use a stick that is the appropriate length for them (there is no short stick/long stick). Sticks will be measured to each girl and coaches might recommend that parents take a hacksaw and shorten the length depending on the size of the girl.
Q: Is Lacrosse a contact sport?
A: Boys lacrosse is a contact sport. Girl’s lacrosse is not a contact sport. Boys in 10U and below play with minimal physical contact. The focus is on developing their lacrosse skills. From 12U and older physical contact is allowed and is taught by coaches appropriately.
Q: Who provides the uniforms?
A: Uniforms will be purchased by families through a 3rd Party vendor. More information will be provided soon.
Q: How do I improve my skills?
A: Practice, practice, practice! The Folsom Lacrosse Association focuses on teaching skills and skills development during the practices held during the season. Additionally there are a number of camps and clinics available in the area (see our web-site links for more details). Between practice, “having a catch” with a friend or getting out and doing some “wall-ball” will hone your throwing and stick skills which are the most important aspect of beginning lacrosse. We also have a good deal of “web-based” knowledge resources linked to this site, and we invite you to surf around for some great tips, tools and help building your player skills.
Q: Where can I buy equipment?
A: Check out the links on our site. There are two local vendors, Lacrosse Fanatic and Sports Authority, and many vendors are on-line. You can also check out the Equipment Exchange here on our website for used equipment.
Q: How can parents get involved?
A: Parent participation is fundamental to the success of our organization and all families are required to volunteer a minimum of 10 hours. In addition to managers, coaches, and assistant coaches, The Folsom Lacrosse Association is an all-volunteer organization and we have a number of critical positions that must be staffed for each team by parent volunteers. We are also planning a number of activities and other opportunities (festivals, fund-raisers, etc.) in which you can contribute. Please get involved! The club needs your support!
Q: What’s the rain policy?
A: Folsom Lacrosse teams play rain or shine. Players should arrive at the field prepared. Practice or games will only be canceled if there is lightning present or at the coaches discretion. Otherwise, practice/games are on as scheduled. Cancellations will be posted on the FLA website by 1:00 pm on the day of practice/games during the weekdays. Saturday practice/games will be posted two hours prior to game start or earlier if available.