The sport of lacrosse has evolved from the Native American game played centuries ago into two separate forms…the men’s game and the women’s game. The rules that govern this gender sport differ for men and women. Women’s rules limit stick contact and prohibit body contact. However, in men’s lacrosse, there is some degree of body and stick contact although violence is neither condoned nor allowed.
Enthusiasm for the sport has exploded in recent years, which is often dubbed the “fastest game on two feet.” Participation in the sport is growing at a 10 percent annual rate. According to US Lacrosse, the national governing body of men’s and women’s lacrosse, statistics reveal that there are more than 125,000 youth players nationwide. This number does not include the 120,000+ high school, college, and club players. The fastest segment of growth in lacrosse is at the youth level. Forty-four percent of current lacrosse players are under the age of 14 and represent the largest segment of growth in girls’ lacrosse.
Beginning in the spring of 2000, the Southern Maryland public high schools instituted a girls’ varsity program. The following year saw the addition of the junior varsity programs. Since then, opportunities to participate in the sport have opened up doors through summer instructional camps to indoor recreational ball. The idea of the St. Mary’s Girls’ Lacrosse League was formed to expand upon these opportunities. With the community’s persistence and passion by our side, we have been able to afford the opportunity for lacrosse exposure to girls at the youth level. The league looks forward to the future growth of women’s lacrosse throughout Southern Maryland.