I can't stand it any more...

Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby Scorekeeper » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:46 pm

And again, DLax dad, my 5'4", 100-pound daughter was able to play four years on the Acalanes varsity and three years at USC, something she would have found it much more difficult to do in basketball, rugby or hockey (particularly hockey, given we don't have it out here). She really loved it and it gave her a great deal of presence, confidence, leadership experience (team captain) and camaraderie.
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby Coach Jen » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:30 pm

Amen, Scorekeeper...
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby DlaxDad » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:09 pm

The issue really isn't whether the other sports are played with a stick, or whether hockey is available in the west, or whether it's a better idea to provide competitive opportunities to smaller athletes. The question is, why are there different rules for women's lacrosse, when in other sports, with the same or greater physical contact, women play under the same rules as men? If the physiology arguments were valid, I'd expect them to be applied to hockey and rugby, too, as those are sports with significant contact -- and rugby is played without pads. I have a niece who plays travel soccer, and who will play for a Division I team in college. Women's soccer is extremely competitive, fast-paced, and physical. I don't see the women's game constrained by different rules than the men's game.

My niece is 5'3" or 5'4". She didn't need a set of special rules either to protect her, or to give her the chance to play at a high level. She got her chance because she's tough, fast, athletic, and has superior ball handling skills. That's the description of what a coach wants in a lacrosse player, too. Tough, fast, athletic, skilled players will find a place to play -- in hockey, rugby, soccer, lacrosse, basketball -- you name it. My son's 5'9" (maybe) and plays defense. He has been seen and contacted by some Division 1 coaches; he's been seen and has contacted Division 3 coaches. (I guess there's some division 2 interest, too.) It's not because he's tall. He's not. He's a kid who's been told since he hit high school that it's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.

I have to believe that Scorekeeper's daughter is an athlete, who would have found her place on the playing field in one sport or another, and that it wasn't necessary for her to play a sport with special, non-contact rules for girls in order for her to excel athletically. I'll bet she'd have been a leader, and a success, in the women's game with or without non-contact rules. Monte Vista has a starting attack man on the men's varsity team who's pretty darn short -- he's been the shortest player on the field in every game I've ever seen him play -- since 6th grade. Doesn't matter. He's a baller. He'll find his spot at the next level.

As I continue to get more involved in the sport, I find more opportunities to watch the women's game, both at the high school and collegiate level. I've just never been persuaded that in lacrosse, separate from almost all other contact sports played by men and women both, it's better for the athletes to have different rules specifically for women. I'm still not persuaded. Listening -- skeptically -- but still listening.
A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby Scorekeeper » Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:23 am

Few women seem to be interested in playing rugby or hockey. Only in the northeast and across the northern tier of states is hockey played at all at the school level. Rugby is purely a club sport.

Soccer is not a contact sport (at least in theory: you may have seen the clip of the New Mexico State player on YouTube). Lacrosse for men has similarities to football (or hockey) and I simply would not like to see a long pole defender repeatedly hitting my daughter on the upper body. Whether she would have been interested in wearing a helmet, I don't know; they didn't even wear goggles in those days and I was always worried that her perfect nose would become the inadvertent target of a ball moving at sixty miles per hour.

Just consider womens' lacrosse to be a slightly different game, depending on the true skills of lacrosse, good stick work, good teamwork and strategy, rather than clobbering an opponent with your crosse or body to dislodge a ball or winning a face off by shoving the other guy off the ball rather than exclusively by stickwork. I really like watching mens' lacrosse, including the contact and the hits; I just don't want my daughter doing that. I think the gals' brand of lacrosse is every bit as appealing.
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby Coach Jen » Tue Apr 27, 2010 12:49 pm

I agree wholeheartedly with you, Scorekeeper! No goggles? I had my nose broken so many times by lacrosse sticks, balls, field hockey balls, baseballs, elbows, shoulders, knees... Love the goggles! I should show you pix of me sometime with the jury rigged face guard I played with so I could play with a broken nose! they called me Jason (Halloween/ the masked guy)...

Also, DLax Dad: What about figure skating and gymnastics? Why can't we just keep it different? Graceful? Why does it have to be called less? The Women's game is beautiful to watch! Why do we need to change it?

Just sayin'! :D
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby DlaxDad » Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:40 pm

Figure skating and gymnastics? Since when are they contact sports?

And since when are the rules different for men's and women's figure skating? (I wouldn't know -- I watch skating once every four years.) If anything, men's and women's skating is growing closer, as women are more able to complete jumps with additional rotations. I'm not sure I'd want to dig down into sports that are scored by a panel of international judges to justify my own preference, either.

And Scorekeeper, anyone who thinks soccer is non-contact hasn't watched much EXCEPT that video of the girl from New Mexico. Soccer, both men's and women's, is non-contact the way basketball is non-contact. As in, not any more.

The fact is that while it's a contact sport, men's lacrosse played well isn't primarily about contact. It's about stick skills, movement without the ball, ball movement, field vision, teamwork, and strategy -- except it isn't stopped for phantom danger and no one gets a free run at the cage while everyone else has to stand still.

The Iroquois called the game Little Brother of War. Is there a women's version of that?

I think women's lacrosse is an acquired taste, which I haven't acquired. If my daughter had played I'd have seen more, but she opted for cross country, soccer, track, and softball. I never developed a taste for softball, either. It has less action than baseball.
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby Coach Jen » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:05 pm

OMG... then why do you care? I think it's funny that you even say that the rules should be changed... YOu crack me up! You don't even watch the game! Soccer is no more contact that girls lacrosse... :lol:
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby DlaxDad » Fri Apr 30, 2010 9:24 am

Here's an interesting perspective on women's contact sports from today's Chronicle. It's an article on women's college rugby, and the tournament being played this weekend at Stanford.

The headline in the morning Chron was "I dream of hitting people," and the headline inside the fold was "Stanford women embrace the roughness of rugby."

Here's the link to the article at SFgate: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... 1D71FC.DTL

By the way, Coach J, you need to read more carefully -- I didn't say I never watch the women's game -- I said that as I get more involved in the sport, I watch more of the women's game -- and I've been on the same field with a Bay Area women's high school varsity lacrosse team, sharing practice space, for the whole season, so I've had a reasonably extended opportunity to see the game played by capable players -- I've just never acquired a taste for women's lacrosse, and don't see why the women's game developed with different rules, particularly with respect to the stoppage of play and awarding players free and unimpeded runs to the cage.

And here's a set of interesting and competing viewpoints from a topic in a forum at LaxPower.com. This one was entitled, "Why girls' lacrosse is tougher than men's . . . " It generated some spirited debate. Here's the link: http://network.laxpower.com/laxforum/vi ... =5&t=19079

Never say I don't consider both sides of the discussion.

I'm not sure why people argue so vigorously that soccer, women's or men's, is non-contact. My niece comes home from every tournament beaten to within an inch of her life. People go for the same ball with their heads, they push and shove each other, and they tackle each other legally -- and I'm not talking about the woman player from New Mexico who pulled somone down by her hair. But the elbowing, collisions, and physical retaliation are absolutely present in women's soccer.
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Re: I can't stand it any more...

Postby Coach Jen » Fri Apr 30, 2010 9:35 am

Girls lacrosse is not non-contact either. My kid, and her teammates are covered with bruises... and bumps on their heads. Incidental contact is what it is called in a politically correct conversation.

All good points, laxdad... will read those articles...
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