Any lacrosse player knows the importance of strategy. A team can emerge victorious in a matter of seconds. All it takes is a single dodge, a pass, or a well-timed set play.
Over the past few years, a specific strategy has become extremely common in the game of women’s lacrosse. Towards the end of a close game, if a team is up by a goal or two, they will try to maintain possession for as long as they can to avoid any possibility of their opponent capitalizing on a turnover and tying the game.
This “strategy” has become a concern of many coaches as it significantly slows down the pace of the game. Consequently, the NCAA Women’s Lacrosse Rules Committee has decided to implement a 90-second possession clock, which will be in place for the 2017 season.
“We, as a committee, felt that limiting the amount of overall possession time will encourage more urgency in transitioning into the offensive end…the main objective should be scoring more efficiently rather than to hold possession of the ball.”
–Julie Myers, Committee Chair and Head Coach at University of Virginia
According to the committee, the offensive team must register a shot within that window or the opposition will be awarded the ball at its location on the field when time expired.
College coaches have responded very positively to the addition of the possession clock.
“It’s a lot of forward thinking. It’s the right thing to do. We want our sport to be the fastest game on two feet…it encourages us to play more up tempo.”
–Cindy Timchal, Head Coach of Navy Women’s Lacrosse
Looks like the “fastest game on two feet” is about to get even faster. What are your thoughts on the addition of a possession clock? Comment below.