As part of my brutal job covering lacrosse here in the Sunshine State I had to spend a day on the beach at Siesta Key covering the inaugural World Lacrosse Beach Festival. But, for you the reader, I suffer. The Beach Festival served as a lunch pad for Casey Powell’s new SPEED Lacrosse™ format.
This modified format is played on a 20 x 40 yard “court” and is played 3 on 3 with small goals and no goalie. There are no pads or helmets, just a stick and a soft “SPEED” ball. Over 200 players participated in the event which included age groups for boys and girls from age 9 through 18.
A Pro game highlighted the event. Casey Powell took to the court with Brett Queener, Tucker Durkin, Chris Mattes, Jordan Hall, and Dan Durns and entertained a crowd of over 500 fans. How many sports can you go watch the games best play on the beach for free from just a few feet away. It was cool.
After watching games in most divisions including boys and girls, as well as the pro event, one thing was consistent. Everyone was having a blast. With the short field and no off sides the game moves from end to end at full speed. Even on the sand the game was fast. The tight field put a premium on moving the ball quickly. While some players did try to dodge they ran out of good angles quickly and had little success. Teams that could move the ball and, most importantly, move off the ball, proved tough to beat.
Games are played in a series of short 6 minute segments so players are able to go full speed the entire game. Walking back to play defense proved costly to teams on just about every occasion. The SPEED format certainly puts a premium on hustle, ball movement, and creativity.
The first SPEED™ league is forming at North Broward Prep and is nearing the sign up deadline.
From their press release;
The first ever Florida SPEED League will take place on the following Sundays – September 27th, October 4th, October 18th. Each Sunday we will host tournament style play where all players will be guaranteed a minimum of 4 matches per week. SPEED teams of 4-5 players are randomly selected by the computer. The teams will team will be re-selected each week based on player rankings.
To sign up for the North Broward League and experience what is unique about SPEED visit www.speedlacrosse.com.