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Where Have I Been?! Updates

1 - Published March 12, 2012 by in CILA, Des Moines, High School, Ramblings, Valley, Youth

I would like to offer my humble apologies to the frequent readers of Lacrosse Iowa (all half dozen of you) and to those that periodically check in on the Hawkeye Cyclone State.  This winter has been insane for me compared to years past.  We moved into our house and got our dog about a year ago.

She's not a fan of wall ball though

Our daughter was born over the summer.  All three major life changes have had a greater impact than I could have ever imagined.  Blogging is much more difficult with a baby on your lap doing her best to smash your keyboard…

But she enjoys the finer things in life

Still, I have been able to get some lacrosse related work done.  A few weeks back I ordered the new Brine King Superlight lacrosse gloves for the Valley Tigers.  Last Monday I submitted our orders for Cascade Pro 7 lacrosse helmets, Harrow gear bags (our new supplier could not get us bags), and all new apparel.  Needless to say, I am stoked to post pictures of the gear when it arrives.  I am digging the new team t-shirt.

Along the way I learned a few new tricks to make the orders easier for me to manage.  Being easier for the parents and players is just icing on the cake.  Our focus now is on our annual fund raising effort.

We’ll head to Omaha this weekend for the league’s JV jamboree.  This week we will be focused on preparing our staggering number of freshmen for their first taste of league action (though quite a few did participate in fall ball).  We have a solid group of new comers that already work well together, so I really like the younger team’s chances this spring. [3/16/2012 Edit: Due to a decrease of the number of player staying in town during spring break, we were forced to withdraw from the Jamboree.  We're all pretty bummed about it.]

Varsity games begin 3/31/12

Now that everything is in place and outdoor practices have finally started, I will begin to focus on the (boys) youth program offered through the Central Iowa Lacrosse Association.  Unlike more established areas, our youth program begins after the high school season to allow the high school coaches and players to take an active role.  With the limited number of experienced laxers here, this is the only feasible way to ensure that new players are receiving the instruction they need.

Last year we were able to purchase 15 sets of gear from Adidas Lacrosse thanks to their liquidation sale.  An almost equal number of helmets were donated by Valley players and other members of the local lacrosse community.  We had hoped to receive an equipment grant from US Lacrosse to aid expansion, but we were denied for the second time.  Obtaining additional equipment to ease the burden on families of varying income levels, most of which have never heard of lacrosse, is the only way to foster real growth.  We are currently working hard to find alternative ways to obtain equipment – without any assistance from US Lacrosse.

Luckily members of the lacrosse community are very generous.  I cannot say much now, but there is a group that has offered to help ease our burden.  There is not enough thanks in the world to convey how I feel about their generosity.  Once they are ready, I will praise them publicly.

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In the mean time, I’ve been picking up random lacrosse equipment here and there.  Being the bargain shopper that I am, I ordered some Warrior Breaker 2 shoes for my wife and myself today-  for $30 each.*  After giving one of my spare lacrosse heads to a buddy, I have been looking for a good deal on a replacement.  I stumbled across the not-long-for-this-world Maverik Bull for $25; since I had $44 worth of gift certificates, I paid nothing (not even shipping).**  Even though the head is old and will soon be pulled from the market (based on what I have seen and heard), I will still review it.  I have some other items to review as well, now that it is warm enough to use them.

Lacrosse Panda received some business from me as well recently via the Tigers.  Even though we’ve just moved outdoor last Thursday, we’ve already fallen victim the lacrosse ball troll.  Somehow the guys have managed to lose a half dozen soft pink lacrosse balls while practicing indoors.

Also, the Panda’s mesh and stringing selection is out of this world and cheaper than the other stores.  My mind nearly exploded while I was exploring the possible combination.  Absolutely unreal.

*Lacrosse Monkey

** Great Atlantic