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Girls Lacrosse: Unstoppable and Rising Quickly

Many young female athletes typically turn to basketball, soccer, gymnastics and tennis. Those who excel at their given sport try to play at the college level, hoping to land a scholarship. Yet lacrosse (sometimes abbreviated to lax) is gaining national attention. In fact, the NCAA recently stated in its Annual Participation Report that lacrosse is the fastest growing college sport.

“There is a huge opportunity right now for girls trying to earn collegiate scholarships in lacrosse,” says Marty Miller, President of the HSE/Fishers Girls Lacrosse Program. “This opportunity is apparent not only because of Title IX [educational amendments of 1972 requiring that women’s sports offer an equal number of scholarships as men’s sports] but also because its popularity continues to grow more and more.”

Although the modern women’s lacrosse game first began in 1890 at St. Leonard’s School in Scotland, this budding sport continues to gain national fame for women. Lacrosse resembles basketball in the grass, only each team consisting of 12 players tries to score a goal using a rubber ball and a lacrosse stick or racquet.

Calling Girls of all Skill Levels in Grades 5-12 Girls lacrosse in Fishers is a club sport (through S.P.O.R.T.S.) made up of players from both HSE and Fishers schools combined into one team.  (fishersgirlslax.usl.la)

Teams are made from among two age groups: high school (grades 9-12) and youth (grades 5-8). If you were unable to attend the Spring Call-Out Meeting December 2, don’t worry. It isn’t too late to play this spring sport.  Email: hsefishersgirlslax@gmail.com with any questions.

“Our goal is to double the program to 160 female lacrosse players from last year,” says Miller. “At the high school level, evaluations are held to place players into varsity or junior varsity teams with no cuts.”

The first practice is January 6 (indoors). Miller invites you to bring your friends to discover the opportunity that awaits you for playing lacrosse, whether you are playing in the off-season to help enhance your skills in another sport (e.g., developing eye-hand coordination for softball) or trying to further prepare yourself for a prospective collegiate scholarship.

Pioneering the Way for Future Players Some of the HSE/Fishers High School lacrosse players are also members of the Predators Lacrosse Club. These girls are proving their extreme talent as they travel around the country for big showcase events. Since September 2012, they have competed in 17 events. They won the University of Louisville 5v5 Tournament, Marquette University 5v5 Event and finished 2nd in Notre Dame’s 5v5 Event. They also won the Midwest Showcase in Chicago at Loyola Academy, Six Flags Classic and the Chi Town Classic this past fall. They finished 2nd in their pool at the IWLCA President’s Cup against U.S. and Canadian teams this past November in Orlando.

This elite team includes players from these high schools: HSE/Fishers High School (9), Carmel (6), Mooresville (1), Westfield (1), Sacred Heart (2) and Culver Academy (1). The nine players from HSE/Fishers on the Elite team are being recruited by Division 1, 2 and 3 schools. Five of these players are being recruited by D1 programs.

“The reason why we named the club team the Predators Lacrosse Club is that we did not want Indy or Indiana in our name because Indiana is an undeveloped lacrosse market that is not recognized for strong lacrosse players,” says Mark Gricius, assistant coach HSE/Fishers Girls Varsity Lacrosse and co-founder/head coach of the Predators. “Every event that we attend, no matter where it is, we always hear from other teams’ parents, college coaches and referees, ‘Who are you? Where are you from?’ When we tell them we are from the Indianapolis area, their response is, ‘Really?!’”

Lacrosse Clinics “It’s just a matter of time before people realize that Indiana has a lot of talent with girls lacrosse,” says Mary Handrahan, head coach of HSE/Fishers Girls Lacrosse Team. Mary recalls how her mom pushed her to try a lacrosse clinic while growing up in Chicago. Mary loved it so much, she played it in high school and college. She says, “You never know until you try it. Once you do, you’ll realize it’s the best sport because it’s challenging and fun!”

HSE/Fishers Girls lacrosse will be hosting a FREE clinic for any youth who has an interest in trying lacrosse. The date is February 1 from 2-4 pm at SPARTA (10080 E. 121st St., Suite 157, Fishers). Contact Rex Holliday at rbholliday@comcast.net or go to hsefishersgirlslax.com for more information.

Predators Lacrosse also holds beginning, intermediate and advanced clinics throughout the year. Contact Mark Gricius at mgricius@predatorslax.com with any questions or visit predatorslax.com.

Sidebar: Here are two short clips of the Predators Lacrosse Team. One is the girls at Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom’s Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas after their first game at the President’s Cup this past November, and the other is the highlights of the semi-final game vs. Loyola Academy and the championship game at the Midwest Showcase against a National Team.

https://vimeo.com/79924572  Highlights of the Midwest Showcase

About Janet Striebel

Janet C. Striebel is a Fishers resident and freelance writer. She and her husband, Doug, have three children: Ryan, Jessica and Justin. She has been writing for atGeist.com for more than seven years and claims that the best part is meeting all the interesting people in her community.

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