Grand Valley Lacrosse Camp piques interest of youngsters
Caleb Miller went from curiosity to participation in one week.
Last week, 14-year-old Miller decided lacrosse would be an exciting sport to try out, and by Monday night, he was one of the participants at the Grand Valley Lacrosse Camp at Canyon View Park.
“I thought it would be kind of fun, and I wanted to see if I would like it,” Miller said. “I got my stick a week ago, and have been just throwing it around with friends.”
Miller and friend Dylan Plsek got their first taste of the sport on a shopping trip at the Mesa Mall.
“The boys went running off to Sports Authority, and of course, wanted to do something where they got to play with sticks and throw balls at each other,” Caleb’s mother Kim said. “They called me, and asked to buy them sticks because they were having so much fun.”
Caleb Miller said the only knowledge he had of the sport was what he had seen on TV, and what his cousins who play in Denver told him. Miller added he wants to try it out as a possible sport to play in high school.
“This really is my first time being exposed to it,” Miller said. “But so far it’s been a lot of fun.”
Miller is the target audience of the camp, which runs through Thursday. Camp organizer Lenny Lang said the event is geared toward players beginning to play the rapidly growing sport.
“This is a skills camp for kids where there is no contact, and they can get the basic skills down,” Lang said. “It’s giving them building blocks to go forward.”
The camp is for boys and girls grades 2nd-8th. Lang said Grand Valley Lacrosse will offer a 2nd and 3rd grade team next spring, and the camp is an opportunity for the young kids to try it out. Lang’s son, Cameron, played for the Grand Valley United high school team this past spring, and is serving as one of the coaches at the camp. Cameron Lang said the camp’s goals are to help build upon the number of players in the Grand Valley.
“We have to show little kids how to do it while they are young,” Cameron Lang said. “That way they can hopefully get better, and stick with the game.”
While the camp catered to first timers there were also a good amount of 7th and 8th graders with previous experience on the Grand Valley Lacrosse middle school team in attendance. For that group, the camp is a chance to improve on the skills they have already learned, as well as break any bad habits.
“The kids who have played before, we still show them the right way,” Cameron Lang said.
“We remind them about always shooting it overhead and not sidearm.”
Lenny Lang said any interested players can still attend the camp at a pro-rated amount.
“We want people to get involved,” Lenny Lang said. “We are looking to grow the sport, and continue to educate people about the sport.”