A Shutout Is The Result Of Playing Well…Duh

Getting a shutout as a lacrosse goalie is really hard.  Veronica writes…”How do I make my son understand that it’s just about impossible to stop every shot on goal?”

First and foremost, be sure to download my Lacrosse Goalie Cheat Sheets because that will help you understand that the “grade” of the goalie is NOT the scoreboard.

I was lucky enough to be taught very early by Coach Winslow that getting a shutout in lacrosse was ridiculously hard.

Why It’s So Hard To Get a Shutout In Lacrosse

The sport of lacrosse is so much more difficult than any other sport when it comes to goalies.  In my post, “Why is lacrosse goaltending so damned difficult” I talked about this a little bit more so check that post out as well.

But in addition to being just plain difficult here are a few reasons why:

  • Off set heads make it easier for offensive players to shoot with more velocity while delaying how the ball comes out of the stick.
  • Shooters can release the ball from anywhere: high or low, left or right, in front of the head or behind the back, underhand, one-handed, left handed or right handed, between the legs, falling to the ground, etc.  In other sports the ball or puck, primarily, leaves from the ground.
  • The net is smaller (with the exception or soccer or field hockey or handball) and yet the style of play to cover the net is limited. (i.e. trying to save the ball with one hand)
  • The lacrosse goalie tries to be a goalie AND a player and therefore wears less so they can be more mobile (which they don’t do as much as they think they do.)
  • The hardness and size of the ball and the protection that goalies wear (or don’t wear) makes the “stress factor” higher than other sports.  No other sport has such a low protection rating versus a hard omg-this-is-going-to-hurt-if-I-get-hit-with-that-thing factor.

Save Percentages In Lacrosse Are Lower…Why?

Quality of shots is higher, especially for the girls. Velocity and shot difficulty is significantly higher.

But a lacrosse goalie MUST adopt the attitude that they can stop every shot no matter what Mrs. Jones says.

Some parents will say, “Hey you did a great job but that one goal…well you aren’t supposed to stop that shot.  That’s not true.  We have to believe that we can stop every shot and learn what to do to save the shots that we missed.

Sure…Some Shots Are Tougher to Save Than Others

It’s true, some shots are more difficult, but you can keep track of your save percentage on those shots too.  I used to Why A Lacrosse Goalie Shouldn't Shoot for a Shutoutkeep track of my statistics inside 5 yards, between 5 and 10 yards, and outside 10 yards.  You can break it down even further if you like.

Embrace The Challenge of Being a Lacrosse Goalie

Be excited that you have embarked on the most difficult goalie position in any sport.  And you can do this!



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