Scooping a ground ball in lacrosse is one of the most important skills in this sport. There are numerous opportunities in a lacrosse game that require a player to scoop a ground ball. The lacrosse scoop is a technique used to gain possession of the ball when it is on the ground.
The scoop happens as a player moves toward the ball. In order to scoop the ball, the player should drop the head of the stick to the ground and the stick handle should almost, but not quite, be parallel with and only a few inches off the ground. The concept is similar to how you would scoop poop (pardon the expression) with a shovel off the concrete. With a quick scoop and then angle upward to keep the ball forced into the deep part of the pocket and from rolling back out. Once in the pocket the player will transition to a cradle, pass, or shot, and continue on.
Breaking it down:
- Approach the ball. Bend your knees and lower the middle of your bottom toward the ball. Lowering your center of gravity will help you get a better angle on the ball when you attempt to pick it up.
- Extend your lacrosse stick directly in front of you. The stick should be almost parallel with the ground at this point. Many players have problems with this skill because they do not place their stick in a parallel position.
- Aim the stick so that the stick will hit the ground directly behind the ball. This will allow you to scoop through the ball when it comes time.
- Pick up the ball with a shoveling motion. This motion should place the ball in the pocket of your stick. Once the ball is in there, bring the ball up towards your eyes. You have successfully scooped a ground ball.
- Practice this skill everyday. It can be a very uncomfortable motion, but a necessity for a serious lacrosse player. The more practice you have with the skill, the better you will be in game situations.