Q: Who plays in the Issaquah Lacrosse youth program?
Issaquah Lacrosse Club programs are only open to student athletes attending resident schools whom will matriculate to Issaquah High School or those attending a private school without lacrosse and with a resident address in the boundaries for Issaquah High School.
High School - Grades 9-12
Youth 78 - 7th/8th Grades
Youth 56 - 5th/6th Grades
Youth 34 - 3rd/4th Grades
Youth K2 - K, 1st and 2nd Grades
If you live outside the Issaquah High School catchment and want to locate Lacrosse programs serving your neighborhood please visit the Greater Eastside Lacrosse League
Looking for info on Girl's Lacrosse in Issaquah - go here to ISD Girl's LAX
Q: When is the Boys Lacrosse season?
Issaquah Lacrosse offers programs year round though the bulk of play termed the "Regular Season" is in the Spring; mid-February through first weekend in June. The Summer includes opportunities for tournament play. The Fall Programs includes indoor and tourney play for experienced players in addition to an "introduction to lacrosse" free program for new players (K-6th grades). Fall Programs runs from mid-September into November and conclude with a tournament the first weekend in December for the returning experienced players.
THE REMAINDER OF THIS Q&A IS FOCUSED ON THE REGULAR SPRING SEASON
Q: What is the time commitment?
Generally, the more advanced the Division of play, the higher the degree of commitment is expected. The Issaquah Lacrosse Club encourages players to participate in other sports "out-of-season". See the multiple sport FAQ for recommendations on "in-season" sports participation.
Q: Can a new player be competitive?
New players at all levels can become highly competitive with experienced players through dedication and effort. Every season we have many new players who work hard and become key contributors on their teams. What players do outside of practice and game time is the most important to skill development. New players in particular will need to work on their stick skills and the best tool for this are the Wall Ball Drills. Many of the fundamentals of Lacrosse come quickly to boys who have played other sports like Football, Soccer, Hockey, Basketball and who participate in conditioning sports like track. The proven key: Good practice makes good players.
Q: When are practices?
For 5/6 and 7/8 Divisions practices typically run from 7:00 - 9:00pm at Central Park in the Issaquah Highlands.
For 3/4 and K/2 Divisions practices typically run for 90 minutes between the 5:30 - 7:30pm time frame at PCMS or IMS.
Flexibility is key with practice schedules due to unforeseen schedule changes rom the city and/or school district. Please keep this in mind when registering for Lacrosse and scheduling other activities for your LAX player.
It is very important to BE ON TIME for all team events. Please respect the coaching staff's time and your teammates commitment. Start times are "ready to go times"; not show up and start dressing time. The Issaquah Lacrosse maxim is "Ready to play 5 minutes early is "On Time". Please plan this into your schedules for arrival and please pick up your player on time as well. Issaquah Lacrosse coaches will wait until the final player is picked up and we ask that you be considerate of our volunteers and respect that they have family commitments as well as their commitments to your players.
Q: When are the games?
Games are on Saturdays beginning first or second Saturday in March. Games typically start between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM for both home and away. Issaquah Lacrosse will normally not schedule regular season practices, games or events on Sunday.
Q: Where are the games?
Issaquah Lacrosse youth home fields are Pacific Cascade Middle School (PCMS) and Issaquah Middle School.
Most regular season away games will be in the greater Eastside area (North Bend to Mercer Island and north to Bothell), with occasional games in the greater King County area. Some special games or lacrosse events may include games outside of King County locations.
Q: Who are the coaches?
Issaquah Lacrosse Club is led by Program Director, Brandon Fortier. Coach Fortier has served as the Issaquah HS Varsity Coach since its inception in 2002. All coaches at the youth junior and senior levels are chosen by Coach Fortier and several are Issaquah lacrosse alumni. Coaches are screened by NCSI and trained through US Lacrosse certifications. 3rd/4th Grade and Lightning Programs are coached by volunteer dads and Varsity HS players.
Lacrosse is an all-weather sport; we play rain or shine. There are two exceptions: if there is lightning in the area (less than 20 seconds between flash & boom) within 15 minutes of event start the game will be delayed until judged safe - please do not leave your player if the game-start is delayed due to lightning until the event begins. A lightning suspension during a game in progress will last at least 20 minutes after the last lightning in the area. All events will be terminated if there is a second lightning suspension. Players should know their parents' cell phone numbers so they can call for pick-up if lightning persists and the event is ended. Snow is always a possibility in early Spring and we will not practice is the field is completely covered in snow before the start time. If in doubt, come, but parents should wait until the practice begins before leaving. Every effort is made to clear turf fields for scheduled games; it is best to come under non-severe conditions and wait until play begins or is officially canceled before leaving your player.
Q: How to dress in cold or wet weather?
Players must wear their Issaquah Lacrosse-issued shorts and reversible jerseys to every practice. Players may not wear their game jersey at practice. You should also bring the reversible jersey to all games in case it is needed when the visiting team has similar colors to yours. Game jersey's must be worn to all games.
When the weather is cold and/or wet players should come prepared. While some players legs stay warm enough in shorts only; others prefer to wear athletic tights or light warm-ups. We recommend long sleeve tight tops and optionally long leg tights to ensure comfort and prevent chilling between game action. Cotton is never the material of choice as it absorbs water readily and once wet, it stays wet and will sap body heat. Sports undergarments made of synthetic fabrics designed for active use are highly recommended. In addition, thin rubber gloves (hospital/surgical type) worn under the lacrosse gloves help keep hands dry and warm. Thin ski liner gloves are also effective.
Players should generally wear undershirts appropriate for the weather even in the summer. During warm-ups a loose sports jacket or sweatshirt OVER the pads and jersey may help a player stay comfortable but will need to be removed once a game begins.
IMPORTANT – All undergarments, sweats, etc must be neutral or team colors. This means black, white, gray, purple or gold!
Q: How can I get ready for the season?
There are a number of ways to improve your game and overall conditioning during the "off-season". There are a number of camps and clinics offered locally that can be valuable for continued development of a players skills & knowledge of the game - watch the Issaquah Lacrosse youth website for upcoming camps & clinics.
Stay active! Issaquah Lacrosse encourages players to stay active with other sports in the off-season. Make sure to have a regular program of running and weight-bearing exercise.
Last, but not least: Hit the wall! There is nothing better than starting the season with your stick skills sharp and both hands developed. You will be a markedly better player that you were last season with just 15-20 minutes of systematic wall ball drills 3-4 times each week. You will get more touches on the ball in a 20 minute drill than you will in a 2 hour practice! So use our Wall Ball guide to hit the wall every week during the off-season - not just during the regular season!
Q: How do I get more playing time?
Everyone plays in Issaquah Lacrosse youth. We have a dual mission that can be best summarized as "Participation and Preparation".
Participation means that all players get opportunity to play and contribute to their respective teams, regardless of their experience or skill. Given the rapid growth of Lacrosse in our area, Issaquah Lacrosse will continue to have some first-year Lacrosse players in each Division every year. To accomplish our mission we ensure that all players are placed on teams and in positions where they can make contributions to their teams' success.
Preparation means that Issaquah lacrosse youth hopes to "graduate" 20 or more 8th graders to the high school program every year, all of whom are ready to step into and take on that next level of intensity and competition. That preparation requires that players play - and play at an appropriately challenging level where then can develop the key skills and understanding of the game needed to succeed at the next level.
Issaquah Lacrosse offers the opportunity for all players to develop their skills and "graduate" to the next level throughout their experience starting at the youngest levels. Our coaches work hard to see that all Issaquah Lacrosse players learn to love the sport of Lacrosse as well as learn how to succeed in playing it.
Issaquah Lacrosse youth is a 'participation-based" program that strives to develop competitive team spirit. We ask our coaches to establish a playing rotation irrespective of ability and experience for the bulk of each game. That said, when the game is on the line late in the fourth quarter, we typically observe that all players want to "play to win" and coaches may choose to put the kids on the field that are having a great day and have the best chance to deliver the win for the whole team.
Players at different positions play more "game clock time" than others which may not have any relation to "game action". There are also special situations in game-play due to penalties which may have a "flagged" player sit in the penalty area for 30 seconds - 3 minutes: a penalized team plays "man-down" for the duration of the penalty and the other team plays "man-up". "Man-down" and "man-up" teams are a central part of game strategy even at the younger levels. Players are selected for a position on the Man-up and Man-down team based on their effort, spirit, diligence and skill exhibited in practice. Players should ask their coaches what they can do to earn the chance to contribute during Man-up and Man-down situations.