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GAME SKILLS DEFENSE


WHAT IS IT? Players work as a team and individually to keep offensive


players from scoring. Footwork, field awareness, solid stick skills and constant communication are the keys


to a strong defense.


WHEN the ball is in a team’s defensive end


WHERE between the center line and end line behind goal


WHO 6 field players and a goalie WHY keep opponent from scoring


FUNDAMENTALS


COMMUNICATION Defensive players must talk so they know when to support each other.


FOOTWORK All defenders should stay light on their feet and ready to move.


DEVELOPMENTAL


U9 AND BELOW - Coaches should discourage double teaming.


Effective defensive body and stick positioning and proper use of legal holds and pushes should take priority over stick and body checking at all ages.


Players should learn man-to-man defense first. Zone defenses should be discouraged at younger ages.


Learning team concepts in small sided situations can help player development.


50


VISION Defenders must see the ball, the man they’re defending, and


always know where the goal is.


POSITIONING Players must be taught proper defensive positioning in all areas around the goal.


PLAY SAFE


Team defense is played with good positioning, footwork, communication and teamwork, not by swinging sticks trying to knock the ball away.


Playing with short sticks only on the defensive end is safe and has tremendous developmental value for U11 and under players.


No player should play defense with a stick that is taller than he is.


Players should be taught how to engage their opponent and the age-appropriate rules for body checking at the same time they’re taught to help or slide.


BOYS YOUTH RULES GUIDEBOOK


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