How to Defend Above the Goal in Men’s Lacrosse

Learn the two key steps needed to defend against attackers in this challenging lacrosse situation.

One of the most dangerous scenario for the defense in lacrosse is when the ball is above the goal. Defending above the goal is a two-part process involving the approach and on-ball defense.

As a defender, you need to have sound positioning on the approach. This means you should be in an athletic stance with your hands and stick out from your body. You want your feet, hands and stick to “split the field in half” so you can push the defender the direction you want him to go.

When the attacker begins to dodge, take him off his straight line with a jam. Maintain contact with the attacker to drive him away from goal. When possible, you should keep your stick head behind the attacker, in what’s called the back pocket, so that he cannot roll back for a safe shot.

Having defenders who can lock in and play quality defense above the goal is essential, so make sure you are practicing this skill regularly. Develop a well-rounded defense by also practicing defending behind the goal.