Beautiful Game

By Nick Williams, Associate Head Coach, Georgetown University  @HoyasWLax

Lacrosse is a beautiful game with a ton of history. Dating back to a time before shooting space, before shot clocks, and before boundaries, lacrosse has been and always will be a beautiful sport.

             Photo credit: Rafael Suanes

Like our country itself, the sport of lacrosse has grown and molded over the centuries into one of the most explosive, athletic and exciting sports in our nation. From native war cries to JMU Dukes cheers, lacrosse’s beauty has echoed through time.

Grace, balance, strength, precision, heart, speed, and desire are just a few attributes needed to be a fantastic lacrosse player. This sport allows boys and girls the opportunity to come together and showcase their own beauty. Beauty is not just on the surface. Beauty is in the art form we create. Beauty is a Katrina Dowd dip n dunk shot from goal line extended, beauty is a Matt Danowski behind the back rip on the run, beauty is a Devon Wills stuff in a one on one situation to ice the game and beauty can be found in a Kyle Hartzell kayak check to get the ball back.

Lacrosse provides our young people with a platform to showcase their creativity, talents and beauty. The most beautiful thing lacrosse does is bring communities together. From the cascades of the pacific northwest to the Atlantic beaches, and everywhere between, lacrosse is growing and showcasing an individual’s beauty.

Although men’s and women’s lacrosse both bring communities together and showcase an individual’s beauty, that is about where the similarities end. Aside from the name and goal size, men’s and women’s lacrosse are completely different. The field dimensions are different, the equipment is different, the rules are different, and even the color of the ball is different.

These differences do not make either sport more valuable or more enjoyable, they simply allow us two paths to the same destination. As a former men’s lacrosse and football player in college, I had no idea about women’s lacrosse. The rules were different, the pockets were smaller, the physicality was lesser, and I believed men’s lacrosse was “better.”

It wasn’t until a chance opportunity fell in my lap that I had the privilege of getting involved with women’s lacrosse. This chance to get involved with women’s lacrosse opened my eyes to a fantastic new world. The finesse, the grace, the power, the speed and the finite skill it takes to play women’s lacrosse blew my mind. Even though the skills needed are different, the ability to be great at women’s or men’s lacrosse is an amazing accomplishment.

More times than not I hear people ask me if women’s lacrosse will “finally go to the men’s game.” My answer every time is ,“I hope not.” Lacrosse is one of the most impressive sports in that we have so many different versions of it. Men’s lacrosse, women’s lacrosse, box lacrosse, and now talks of 6 vs. 6 Olympic lacrosse provide more and more opportunities for people to be involved with this amazing sport. The differences between women’s and men’s lacrosse shouldn’t be frowned upon, but in my humble opinion, they should be highlighted.

Communities across America are made up of different people with different experiences, different talents and different personalities. Our differences are what make each one of us unique and beautiful. We should not shy away from these differences but embrace each difference for what it is: beauty.

The differences in lacrosse are not a flaw, but a beautiful way to increase participation in a tremendous sport that provides happiness to countless people. So, whether you are wearing a helmet or goggles, as long as you are playing lacrosse, you will forever be… beautiful.

3 thoughts on “Beautiful Game

  1. As a Dad, who played lacrosse, coached my son and then my daughter, I can totally relate to this and could not agree more! I continue to coach High School aged club players and women in college, because I too, grew to love what a beautiful and distinct game it is!


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