Youth hockey gives lacrosse a shot in Alaska
Lacrosse is the ultimate spring sport. Right now, in the Lower 48, at different levels, they're into the post-season. In high school or college visions of fans sitting out on a warm spring afternoon watching high paced contests are not uncommon.
But in Alaska, there's no championship round and no playoffs. First, it needs some teams.
The Anchorage Hockey Association is doing its part. During the month, kids are gathering at Ben Boeke Arena--yes normally with ice--now for lacrosse on the artificial turf.
It's more like a see-how-it-goes trial. But the organizers, many who played previously in college or high school want to give the youngsters an opportunity at something other than hockey. They love the pucks and the ice but realize kids need variety.
"The problem you get with a lot of sports, people play year round and that's not what's needed for these kids, like for us put their hockey sticks down and pick up a lacrosse stick because hockey and lacrosse have so many similarities and it's just good for these kids to unplug from hockey and try something new," said Barrett Heisten, the AHA's Development Director.
They're taking to it.
"So far, it's been fun, easy, pretty hard sometimes," said Shawn Casey.
It's seen as a cousin of hockey, but on grass. It's fast and at the higher levels physical, like hockey. It's billed as the "the fastest sport on two feet."
Depending on the interest. the program may extend into the summer.
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