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Tip of the Week #4

Posted Sunday, January 11, 2009 by Cliff Hedges
Ahhhh, Snow again!  Seems like a good time to discuss Lax.

Tip of the Week#4  will focus on Double Team- I love Dbl teams and they cause turnovers.

When a defender forces to help, they create dbl team situation. With PATIENCE, and SMARTS a double team can be very effective in causing the attacker to turn the ball over or make a bad decision.

A- Positioning:  When a dbl team is formed, it is important that the defenders position themselves so they do not cut each other off.  The defenders should form a "V" shape, essentially forcing the attacker to go between the two defenders.
  • If the attacker tries to go to the outside one of the defenders, they must force her back to their teammate, just as in a settled 1 v 1 situation(i.e. step up to her side)
  • If the attacker tries to go through the middle, the defenders simply need to close the gap with their bodies. It can be tempting to go for the check , but this is risky.  The defenders should close the gap with bodies first,; the check will come second. (Maddy Dowd and Lida very good at this)
  • Remember; be prepared for the roll back.  The attacker will always try to get out of pressure, usually by rolling the opposite direction. Be ready for it. (Stef the TOWER an alum now, was good at using her body to stop the attackers)
B-  Communication (yes we need to talk) Communication  in a dbl team sistuation is just as important as communicaiton any other time.  Communicaiton does not become any less important when there are two defenders against one attacker. Learn to know what your teammate is going to do. It is important  to communicate woh has body, who has stick, and where to force.  Here are a few communication examples:
  • "I GOT BALL"  This defender is focused on playing body defense.  They are not going for a check; they are SOLEY trying to contain and slow the attacker with their body.  JUST CAN"T stand some girls who feel the need to yell this 1 million times. 
  • "I GOT STICK" this defender is in a better position to make a check.  They still must play body defense but are aggressive and looking for a check. (Chaug is good at this, so remember to protect our sticks)
  • "FORCE BACK"  Force back is a term used to indicated to a teammate that they need to step up and force the attacker in the opposite direction (back to the communication defender)
C-  Double Team Situations:
  1. Stay on the Dbl Team: After the initial side to double the defender can chose to stay on the dbl team or to return to their original girl.  If they stay on dbl, they should communicate and pressure the attackers so that she cannot find the open player and make a pass(WE ARE GOING TO BE A HIGH PRESSURE DEFENSE TEAM).  Stay on the dbl if you have good pressure on the attacker after the initial slide, if you feel the attacker getting flustered, if the attacker is one of their weaker players, or if you know she will not be able to make a good pass or good decision under pressure.  (Most players have a tendency to drop a good dbl team to early)
  2. Drop off the dbl team: Sometimes after the initial slide to dbl it is better  to back off and return to open girl.  This can depend on the opposing team, your defensive scheme, or the time remaining in the game.  Drop off the dbl if you do not have good pressure on the attacker, if you feel vulnerable to getting beat, if the attacker sees the pressure coming and backs out before you can form a solid dbl team, if the attacker starts to back far out, or if we for some reason are not playing a high pressure def, we won't need to chase them out of critical scoring area.  Remember; if you drop off the dbl team, quickly find the open girl. However, do not leave a dbl blindly.  A good aggressive attacker mght feel the pressure release and try to re-attack. Find the open girl but keep an eye on the ball. ( OPEN YOUR FIELD OF VISSION)
  3. Attacker Passes out of the Dbl team: Once the attacker passes out of the dbl team, both defenders need to get back into defense. One defender needs to comunicated and listen to the feedback from their fellow defenders to quickly find the open girl.



SLIDING:  Sliding is one of the most important defensive skills. It is a term used to define the movement of a defender as she leaves her current position to help a fellow defender.  "FIRST SLIDE"  refers to a slide from the defender directly next to the ball (right or left), to help her teammate who is on ball.  "SECOND SLIDE" refers to the defender who slides  to cover the girl left open by the FIRST SLIDE; this slide comes from the closest defender to the open player. Often, there are numerous slides until the ball carrier is stopped and the defense can reset into a settled man to man (or woman to woman in this case), with every player marked.  When a defender slides, there are a few basic keys:
  • Always Anticipate: One of the most important parts of good team defense is anticipating the slide.  It may seem strange, but a defender  should expect their teammate to get beat.   If you expect your fellow defender to get beat, you will always be ready to make the slide to help if needed.
  • Body: When a defender slides, they should slide with their body not their stick( foul will be called) Usually a slide comes because a teammate just got beat.  Focus on slowing the attacker down with your body.  A defender cannot afford to go for a check and get beat too. (REMEMBER BE STRONG AND AGGRESSIVE)
  • Slide Hard: Slide hard and with a purpose.  Do not be scared or reluctant. Making half hearted slide can be more detrimental then not sliding at all.  A purposeful slide will not only surprise the attacker, but it will help fellow defenders to make the second and third slides effectively. ( I rather you try and make a mistake then not try at all, once you decide GO!)
  • Communicate the slide: As long as a defender communicates when they slide and where  they slide from, they can do no wrong.  Do not assume that you your teammates can read your mind (SWEET JESUS NO WAY) or see what you are doing.  Communicate to tem so that they know who will be open when you slide and where they need to slide to( VERY EASY, LIDA I GOT GIRL, OK MARTHA I GOT #3)
  • Get back: When you make your slide and the attacker moves the ball or backs out of pressure, hustle back and find the open girl.
  • Communicate the Open Girl(are you seeing a trend here) It is just as important to communicate after the slide as it is to communicate before the slide.  When a defender(s) stops the ball, the defenders must get back into thier settled defense, unless we are in high pressure "we need to get the ball mode"
I LOVE DEFENSE AND OUR ENTIRE TEAM PLAYS DEFENSE, IN ORDER TO BECOME A GREAT DEFENDER YOU HAVE TO HAVE GAME SENSE, COMMON SENSE AND NO FEAR.  (MADDY IS VERY GOOD AT THIS) WE NEED 12 OF HER ALL OVER THE FIELD, AND EACH OF YOU CAN DO IT, YOU JUST HAVE TO BELEIVE YOU CAN.  WE WILL FOCUS ON THIS A LOT THIS SEASON.   Have a great day, see you at our meeting this week. Coach

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