Lacrosse success was many years in the making

To the editor:

Congratulations to the combined Saranac Lake and Lake Placid girls varsity lacrosse team for a good showing this year.

Twenty-two years ago, I started Tri-Lakes Youth lacrosse for kids in kindergarten through eighth grade, with the help of many along the way. The dedicated local organizers and coaches continue the program. When Tri-Lakes Youth Lacrosse was established, it was decided that we would form girl’s teams to compete against other North Country youth lax programs.

In 2001, there were few youth lacrosse programs in the North Country and even fewer girls programs. Most existing youth organizations in this area mixed boys and girls together and played boys rules, even though the women’s and men’s games are very different. Now there is a boys and girls youth and scholastic lacrosse program in almost every one of the big North Country school districts. Lacrosse was and continues to be the fastest-growing team sport in the country.

The combined town team concept that was promoted by Tri-Lakes Youth Lacrosse years ago has worked. In some team sports, Saranac Lake and Lake Placid were too small to have their own scholastic programs. After several years of work, the school boards decided that the “combined” model was a good one and could be applied to other programs, too. We see the results on the fields now as local teams continue to be competitive, as evidenced by the SL-LP girls varsity team.

Special thanks to the current youth and scholastic coaches, parents and players for putting in the effort to sustain the game that was created through and by Indigenous people hundreds of years ago, and remains viable today.

Bill Larzelere

Founder, Tri-Lakes Youth Lacrosse

Juno Beach, Florida, and Bolton Landing


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