High School Girls

July 4, 2009

7 Questions: US Lacrosse U-15 National Championship

by Brian Logue, Lacrosse Magazine Online Staff

The inaugural US Lacrosse U-15 National Championships, presented by Modell’s Sporting Goods, opens on Monday morning at Cedar Lane Sports Park in the Baltimore suburb of Bel Air. Sixty-two of the nation’s top boys and girls youth teams will be on hand, hoping to earn the right to call themselves national champions. Girls’ play runs from July 6-8 and boys’ play goes from July 8-10. Lacrosse Magazine gives you seven questions to get ready for the championship:

Do I know any of these people?
The players might not be household names…yet, but some of their coaches are. On the girls side alone, the coaches include National Lacrosse Hall of Famer and four-time U.S. World Cup team member Danielle Gallagher (Long Island Liberty), her former World Cup teammate and former Stanford coach Michele Uhlfelder (Nor Cal Blue/Gold), legendary high school coach Kathy Jenkins (Stars Gold) and another National Lacrosse Hall of Famer in Mike Farrell (TLC Lacrosse).

Where are the teams from?
The national geographic expansion of the sport will be on display this week. The 32 boys teams represent 18 states, led by New York (6) and Maryland (5). The 30 girls teams hail from 13 states, with Maryland (6), New York (4) and Pennsylvania (4) best represented.

Who has the best name?
There are some great names – how can you not like the LaxManiax girls from Florida and you have to like the Phantastix Purple & White teams paying tribute to their Philadelphia roots, but sometimes simplicity wins out. So, I’m casting my vote to the FatCat Lacrosse girls’ team from Michigan.

Will lacrosse ever have a video game?
The Pittsburgh ACES boys team is coached by former Robert Morris captain Carlo Sunseri. Sunseri has also kept busy working on developing the first college lacrosse video game. Sunseri’s College Lacrosse 2010, a planned Xbox Community game, was featured on Lacrosse Magazine Online last month.

What’s the tournament format?
There are eight pools for each event with four teams in each pool (two of the girls’ pools will have three teams). Each team plays the other three teams in its pool and the top two finishers in each pool advance to a 16-team single elimination tournament.

Are there any honors?
Absolutely. For starters, the US Lacrosse Youth Council will honor one team from each event with a Sportsmanship Award that is based on the team’s behavior throughout the tournament. Each member of the championship team will receive tournament jackets from EnduraFit, the official retailer of the event. Finally, Lacrosse Magazine will select an all-tournament team at the conclusion of the event, with Brine providing sticks to each player.

Who will win?
Obviously we don’t know that one, but follow the tournament right here on Lacrosse Magazine Online to find out. Video highlights will also be available on SportsMaryland.com

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