Attendance + Playing Time Policy

As a township-based youth sports club, MSHLAX is committed to the mission of providing a high-quality lacrosse experience for each and every child in Millburn-Short Hills that desires to play the sport in Kindergarten through 8thgrade.

Our club provides skills development and competitive play for a wide range of experience levels and athletic abilities, from beginner through advanced players. In addition to providing athletic and skills development, MSHLAX is dedicated to promoting sportsmanship and a positive team-culture.

Building lacrosse skills and high-functioning teams necessitate a level of commitment from each child who chooses to join MSHLAX.  Lacrosse is a demanding sport that requires hand-eye coordination, physical and mental toughness, a team-player attitude and a focused, spatial awareness of the field and surrounding players—something commonly referred to as “lacrosse IQ.”

In the early grades through 4th grade, MSHLAX realizes that children have not yet “chosen” a spring sport and may be involved in multiple sports during our regular season.  As the children age and mature through 5th grade and the Middle School years, dedication to the sport of lacrosse becomes important not only for personal development as a lacrosse player, but also important to forming high-functioning teams.

As such, MSHLAX has implemented an attendance policy aimed at requiring a progressive level of dedication from each player in grades 5th through 8th.  While we strive to play each child for at least one quarter during each game for which he/she is dressed out, playing time ultimately will be driven by the following:

  • Attendance: the first task is showing up.
    Players who miss practices and/or games or who are routinely late or leave early can expect for their playing time in games to be reduced, perhaps significantly.
  • Effort: showing up isn’t enough, you have to work.
    Players who are disruptive, do not follow coaches’ directions, are unsportsmanlike, or “go through the motions” at practice, can expect for their playing time in games to be reduced, perhaps significantly.
  • Commitment: being there + working hard + dedication to MSHLAX
    During our regular spring season, it is our club’s expectation that each child in grades 5th - 8th will progressively increase their commitment to lacrosse and to MSHLAX. Furthermore, MSHLAX expects that during the spring season our club will be each child’s primary lacrosse club.  While we endeavor to exist symbiotically with other spring sports and for-profit travel lacrosse clubs, if a player frequently chooses another sport or another lacrosse club over MSHLAX, that player can expect for their playing time in MSHLAX games to be reduced, perhaps significantly.  In post- and off-season play, agreement to specific attendance requirements may be a condition of registration and rostering to the team.  However, MSHLAX will never require a player to join our post- and off-season programs, and any child who chooses to play elsewhere in the post- and off-season can feel secure in knowing that his/her place on the MSHLAX regular season team will remain intact.