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Lacrosse: Player Positions

Lacrosse Player Positions Lacrosse Rules Lacrosse Strategy Lacrosse Glossary

There are four main player positions on a Lacrosse team: defenseman, midfielder, attackman, and goalkeeper.


Defender: Lacrosse defenders protect the goal. It is their job, together with the goalie, to make sure the opponent does not score a goal. Defenders often use a longer lacrosse stick to allow them to block or deflect passes and shots. They must try to stay between the attacker and the goal and prevent the attacker from getting off a clean shot on goal. Working together and communication with other defenders is key in forming a good defense.

Midfielders: The midfielders are allowed to play over the entire Lacrosse field. They play both offense and defense. A good midfielder must have speed and endurance. One of the main tasks for midfielders is transition. That is moving the ball from defense to offense quickly in order to create an advantage on offense. Midfielders also are responsible in making sure the team doesn't get called for offsides when transitioning. Midfielders are sometimes call "middies".

Attackers: Lacrosse attackers are responsible for scoring goals. There are three attackers on each lacrosse team. They stay on the offensive side of the field, receive the ball from the midfielders in transition, and move the ball into scoring position. Attackers must have superior skills with the lacrosse stick in shooting, passing, and protecting the ball from defenders. Attackers use fakes, passes, plays and other moves to get off clean shots on goal. They must work together to outwit and outplay the defenders and goalie.

Goal Keeper: The goalie is one of the most important positions in lacrosse. They are the last line of defense and must keep the opponent from scoring a goal. The goalie has an area around the goal, called the crease, where only they (and their fellow defenders) can go. Typically the goalie remains in the crease and near the goal, however, sometimes the goalie needs to come out of the crease as well. The goalie must have very quick hands and tremendous hand-eye coordination. A lacrosse goalie must also be very tough as they will be hit by the ball at high speeds many times during a game. The goalie must also be a good leader in order to direct the defenders and organize the defense.

Players are substituted throughout the game. Midfielders are often substituted in lines like in ice hockey because they run so much and need to rest. Sometimes there is a player that is really good at face-offs, so they will play the face-off and then immediately get substituted for another player.

Lacrosse Player Positions Lacrosse Rules Lacrosse Strategy Lacrosse Glossary

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