Lacrosse Boys v. Girls


The General’s Varsity lacrosse team play the Yorktown patriots. The uniforms for boys lacrosse have more padding, as do their sticks. Photo Cred: Jeanie Laybourn and Lucas Codispoti

Boys and girls lacrosse are two very different sports. Even though they have the same name, they use different equipment, play on different fields and follow different sets of rules.

Equipment is one of the biggest differences; boys have to wear helmets, protective gloves and elbow and shoulder pads, while girls only have to wear eye protection. Also, the sticks that girls use have no pockets, making it more difficult to hold onto the ball.

“Historically, girls games have been less aggressive,” junior and varsity lacrosse midfielder Jeanie Laybourn said. “[However,] even though girls lacrosse is not perceived to be as aggressive as boys lacrosse, the lack of safety equipment [such as pads or helmets] tends to make the game more dangerous.”

Boys play with ten players on the field: one goalie, three defenders, three midfielders, and three attackmen. On the other hand, girls play with twelve players on the field: one goalie, five defenders, and six attackmen. According to US Lacrosse Rules, the field length for girls lacrosse is 120 yards, while boys fields are only 110 yards.

“I think each type of lacrosse was designed specifically for each sex, but if someone wanted to play on the other team, they should have the opportunity to do so,” Laybourn said.

Many people believe that there are more differences than similarities between boys and girls lacrosse and that one of them should be renamed all together.

“Boys and girls lacrosse are completely different and it wouldn’t be an overstatement to call them different sports,” junior and J.V. lacrosse midfielder Lucas Codispoti said. “With that said, I personally wouldn’t go that far [renaming one of the sports] because I believe there would be lots of backlash.”

There are lots of different opinions on boys and girls lacrosse, some believe that girls lacrosse is more entertaining in the sense that girls need to learn more ball controlling skills and be more creative while others believe boys lacrosse is because of all the physical contact and the aggressivity.

“The rules were made for girls in a way that they don’t physically injure themselves [as much as boys lacrosse],” Shane N. said, a graduate from the class of 2017 who played on the varsity lacrosse team. “[The] reason being to preserve their physical features, especially beauty. That’s the basis of these rules [for girls lacrosse], just like in softball and it’s unfair not only to girls playing lacrosse, but girls playing almost any sport.”