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Boys Intro to Travel (Grades 3rd and 4th)

GYL offers a travel program for 3rd and 4th grade players.  Our Intro to Travel program is a great place for our younger players to get a taste of travel lacrosse.  All games will be played against other towns in our area using consistent rules across the entire league (see below for more details).

 

In 2017, as part of a CONNY-wide initiative, all Lightning Lacrosse (3rd and 4th grade) was moved to a small-sided format which was modeled, in part, after GYL’s successful House League.  In 2018, CONNY will make some adjustments on the boy’s side which includes a move to the same 8v8 model as the girls (2 defenders, 3 midfields and 2 attack (2-3-2) plus a goalie).  Additional modifications to the rules are being introduced which will further improve the flow of the games.

 

A big change to our program for 2018 will be the introduction of age segmentation for our K-4 age group.  Last year, CONNY and US Lacrosse, the governing travel lacrosse body in our area, moved to age segmentation for our 5th through 8th grade programs.  Basically, all of our older players have to play with an age group within a pre-defined age band.  The K-4 programs have the option to stay purely grade based.  In recognition that some families would like to move up their children to a higher grade, based solely on their birthday, you will have the option to do so when registering.  So older second grade boys, older third grade boys and girls, and older fourth grade boys and girls may be eligible to play for the age group above.  If you elect to do so, you will be aged up for the entire season without an option to return to the younger age group. See FAQ below for greater clarity.

 

Here are additional details on the Intro to Travel program:

  • Team evaluations will begin April 7; time and location will be posted on GYL home page

  • Participation in our House League is required (Fridays and Saturdays)

  • 3rd grade boys will practice once a week on Wednesdays following evaluations (a second practice may occur on Sunday in lieu of a game)

  • 4th grade boys will practice once a week on Tuesdays following evaluations  (a second practice may occur on Sunday in lieu of a game)

  • 3rd and 4th Intro to Travel teams will have one or two games per week (they will typically play Sundays or may have a practice in its place)

  • Season ends June 1st

  • Individual team practices and game schedules can be found on the home page of the website under the tab, Travel Teams

  • GYL may add a team due to registration numbers and may balance teams differently to accommodate a wide range of skills - GYL reserves the right to field a development team (Blue)

 

If you have any questions please contact .

 

Age Segmentation FAQs

 

Q.             Why are you allowing optional age segmentation in boy’s 3-4 and girl’s 4th grade?
A.              Your child will eventually have to adhere to CONNY age segmentation.  For most, that means they will finish the 4th grade one season and move directly to 6th grade.  This can be a hard transition for some and we are giving parents the option to make that change earlier in your child’s travel experience.

Q:             I want to find out more about CONNY’s Grade-based player segmentation.
A:              You can find more information here.

Q:             What are the birthday ranges by grade:
A:              You can find more information on the GYL homepage

Q.             So if my son is in second grade but according to age segmentation can play third grade, does he play Intro to Travel Lacrosse?
A.              No, he has the OPTION to move up. He can stay in grade, or OPT in to third grade travel and corresponding third grade house league.

Q.             My son/daughter is an older 4th grader and, according to age segmentation, can play 5th grade travel.  Can we do that in 2018?
A:              Again, this is your OPTION. We are allowing families to decide in grade 2 – 4 for boys and 3 – 4 for girls.

Q.             I have an older 1st grader that would benefit by moving to the second grade house league. Can we do this in 2018?
A.              No. All K – 1 boys and girls, and 2nd grade girls must stay in grade for house league. This OPTION is granted for older youth that would prefer to accelerate their travel experience in grades 2 – 4 for boys and 3 – 4 for girls.

 

 

 

GYL and Small Sided Play

 

GYL is a long-time advocate of small sided play. 

 

What exactly does this term mean?  It means you play a game with fewer players competing on a smaller sized field.  GYL’s House League was an early adopter of this concept and we’ve introduced other facets such as smaller goals and modified sticks (K-2 in our girls program).  Our House League has been a model for other programs.

 

What are the benefits?  Small sided play provides a competitive environment where the boys and girls have a greater opportunity to touch the ball and be involved in the game.  The kids gain confidence as they maximize time with the ball in their stick (touches), field time, and overall development. 

 

Seriously?  Why mess with the game?  Lacrosse and youth sports are changing.  It’s about development and not one alpha kid running through a team to score a goal.  Here is some additional material that highlight the merits of small-sided play:

 

Other sports aren’t doing this!  Think again.  Most sports have adopted a similar mindset and it is changing the way young athletes learn their sport and learn how to compete.

 

How does this apply to Intro to Travel Lacrosse?  In 2017, CONNY Lacrosse, which is the governing body of youth lacrosse in our area, will adopt small-sided play for all 3rd and 4th grade travel lacrosse.  GYL and the entire CONNY membership fully endorsed this move to make the game better for our young players.

 

So, are the rules changing for 3rd and 4th Grade Intro to Travel?  Beyond the field and goal size, the rules are largely the same.  Here are some highlights of the modifications being made CONNY-wide.

 

Boys:

  • 8 v 8 (7 field players plus a goalie)

  • 60-70 x 35-45 yard field, adjustable for local conditions

  • Goals 40-50 yards apart, adjustable for location conditions

  • 9’ radius goal crease with an option to use small goals

  • Helmets, shoulder pads, arm pads, lacrosse globes, mouth guards and protective cups are required at all times

  • 37” to 42” length sticks – no long sticks permitted

  • Regular lacrosse balls

  • 10-min running time quarters (2 minutes between quarters and a 5 minute half time) 

  • Rotational substitutions strongly recommended

  • No team time-outs

  • No overtime

  • No body checking but legal holds, pushes, and incidental contact are allowed

  • Only stick checks are permitted (lift checks, poke checks, and downwards stick checks initiated below both players’ shoulders)

  • Penalized player for personal fouls leaves field – but, no man down defense/extra man offense **note, for 2018 there is a proposal to change this rule to fast-breaks for penalty infractions

Girls:

  • 8 v 8 (7 field players plus a goalie)

  • 60-70 x 35-45 yard field, adjustable for local conditions

  • Goals 40-50 yards apart, adjustable for location conditions

  • 9’ radius goal crease with an option to use small goals

  • Goggles and mouth guard required

  • 35.5” – 43.25” field crosse length, 35.5” – 52” goalkeeper crosse length

  • No jewelry is to be worn, no taping of ears is allowed

  • Regular lacrosse balls

  • 25 minute running time half; 5-minute halftime

  • One team time-out per half

  • No overtime

  • No checking

  • No covering ground ball, no empty stick check

  • All players stand on whistle

  • Draw to start each half and restart play after goals

 

Do these rules apply to all 3rd and 4th grade travel teams/programs?  Yes, these rules are consistent across all CONNY programs (New Canaan, Darien, Rye, Wilton, etc).