If you are NEW to Henry Youth Lacrosse or lacrosse in general, the following information will answer many of the questions you might have. We realize this is a lot of information, but we want you to know the details. Please feel free to contact us (or your team’s coaches directly) if you need additional information or have questions that aren’t answered in the information details below. We also recommend you review our FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) section of this website – which has additional information or details on the most-common questions parents have about lacrosse, our fall season, or our program in general.
TEAM ASSIGNMENTS: Players are assigned to teams based on school grade (as of the 2023-2024 school year) and not by age. If your child is younger/older than the typical grade for his/her grade, or you would prefer your child play on a different team for some other reason, please feel free to reach out and discuss with us. Grade groupings for fall lacrosse teams are set by The Newtown Parks & Recreation League (this league is responsible for scheduling games and officials for the season). Here are the age groupings for the Fall 2023 Season:
* UPDATE: As of August 28, 2023, we are making the following adjustments to rosters based on registration numbers for the Fall 2023 Season:
Teams and roster assignments are subject to change based on coach recommendations, parent requests, or increases in team size due to any late registration activity (which is common). If you have any questions or requests regarding team assignment, please reach out to your team’s coaches.
As a recreational lacrosse program (which plays in a recreational lacrosse league), our goal is to field teams so players have an opportunity to play (versus us not having a team in any given season due to low registration at a particular grade-level). As such, it’s common for us to play children UP or DOWN one grade to fill rosters (and other teams we play do this as well). We get approval from the league for this, so any play-up/play-down recommendation we make is “legal.” In addition to school grade or age, we may recommend players play UP or DOWN based on their size, athleticism, or experience. If you have any questions or requests concerning team assignments, please feel free to reach out.
ROSTER MINIMUMS AND LEAGUE PLAY:
In order to compete in league play against other programs, we need to have enough players on each team to both field a team (number of players required to play the game format at each grade-level), as well as a 2-player buffer to allow for substitutions and/or to prepare for possible schedule conflicts, illnesses, or other factors that might cause players to miss games. As such, Henry Youth Lacrosse uses a “minimum players required”+2 formulate as its “minimum roster requirement.” Teams must meet the minimum roster requirement BEFORE we will register teams for league play. We will make every effort to fill teams in order to play games – for example, we may play players UP or DOWN (as detailed above) in order to field teams for the season. Please see the list below for our minimum roster requirements for each team’s age group:
* UPDATE: Based on registration as of August 28, 2023, Henry Youth Lacrosse has registered the following teams in the Newtown Parks & Recreation League for the Fall 2023 Season:
This plan ensures that all boys and girls in Grades 2-8 will have the opportunity to compete on our lacrosse teams this fall. Team groupings and roster assignments are subject to change – for example, if there is a surge in late registrations. At this time, we do not anticipate making any further adjustments for the Fall 2023 Season.
PRACTICES AND GAMES:
When and Where Are Practices?
Field space is incredibly limited in the fall for lacrosse. All practices for the Fall 2023 Season will be held at Mt. Carmel Soccer Complex. The practice schedule for the Fall 2023 Season is as follows:
Elementary School Boys 2/3 and Boys Middle School Junior 6/7: Sundays from 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Tuesdays from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Elementary School Girls 3/4 and Girls Middle School 7/8: Mondays and Thursdays from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Elementary School Co-Ed 1/2 “Little Laxers”: Mondays and Thursdays from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. NOTE: This is a NEW program and we are attempting 90-Minute Sessions. If coaches determine this group does not have the collective attention span for 90-Minute Sessions, we may shorten to 60-Minutes. If/when we do this, we would likely schedule supplemental “short” practices to compensate for shorter session times.
We are tentatively scheduled to practice on Field #1 at Mt. Carmel. Field numbers are located on the fences surrounding the fields and this field is located in the back parking lot at the park (on the left side). We also have a general use field available next to the playground area at the park. We may utilize this area for practices if our main field is too crowded (or depending on the practice plan). If/when there is such a change, we will communicate to parents and update the field location in the GameChanger App (which all parents/guardians should download and use during the season). All practices will be listed in the GameChanger App as well. PLEASE RSVP for ALL practices and games by clicking “YES” or “NO” for whether your child will attend. This helps our coaches plan for the best-possible practice and game experience for your children.
NOTE: Practice times are subject to change. For example, if a majority of players are unable to arrive on-time to practice, we may extend practice. If/when this becomes an issue, we will discuss with parents before making any adjustment. Coaches may also schedule supplemental or “bonus” practices if/when the team needs additional instruction. Again, coaches will discuss with parents before making any adjustments to the schedule.
When And Where Are Games?
There are no other youth lacrosse programs in Henry County. As a result, our league opponents may be located anywhere in the Greater Metropolitan Atlanta Area. It’s likely that 85% or more of our games will be played outside of Henry County. Newtown Parks & Recreation should complete the game schedule within the first two weeks of the season. Once we receive the schedule, coaches will add these games to the schedule in the GameChanger App. This will include the opponent, date, time, and field location/details for each game. The league typically schedules “round robin” games for teams, where we will play two games each scheduled weekend. This helps make the experience worth the drive for players and their families. In past seasons, our teams have played games in Peachtree City, Decatur, Powder Springs, Roswell, Marietta, and Kennesaw.
We do expect to host home games, though this is not a guarantee (not all teams in the league are always willing to drive to Henry County for games when most lacrosse programs are located North of I-285). When we are scheduled for home games, we try to schedule use of Union Grove High School’s Stadium. In the event we are unable to play at Union Grove, we will likely play at Mt. Carmel Soccer Complex. We will discuss our plan for games with all parents once the schedule is released. If you have any questions or concerns, please let us know. We have had a great experience playing in this league to date, and while the drive can sometimes be less than ideal, our players always have a great time and enjoy the experience.
Who Do We Compete Against?:
Players enrolled in our K-1st Grade “Little Laxers” program do not play against other teams from outside our area. We will scrimmage and compete in other competitions with this group, appropriate for the number of players we have register for this program. Players on our 2nd - 8th Grade teams play against other programs from around the Greater Metropolitan Area. We will travel to host sites for 1-2 games per week and will typically host games 1-2 times during the season (depending on league scheduling). Games typically begin in mid-September and continue until the first week of November. The schedule is typically made available in early September and we will update the schedule in the GameChanger App (the free app we use for communication with parents – this app includes a practice/game schedule, team rosters, and a chat function for parents to interact with coaches and other parents throughout the season).
When Are Games?
Games are typically on Saturday mornings – but can also be on Saturday or Sunday afternoon depending on the availability of fields and officials. It’s common for our teams to play double-headers (two games) when we travel – which makes it worth the drive for our players to be able to compete against multiple opponents when possible. In addition to league play, we may schedule games against other programs we have existing relationships with (such as Peachtree City, Decatur, and Druid Hills Youth Lacrosse Association or DLYLA to provide our players with additional opportunities to play and compete).
What Should We Expect From Games?
The most important thing you should expect is for your child to PLAY in the game. Our coaches make every effort to give players equal playing time, though we do also make substitution decisions based on the flow of the game. If at any time you notice your child sitting on the bench or taking a nap on the sidelines, it is most likely due to their mood, energy level, or interest on that given day. All our coaches work to give all players an opportunity to play and compete and encourage them to “go in” – even when they might not feel like it. We encourage you to walk around the field at any time to check on your child if he/she isn’t actively involved in the game. Coaches will most likely share what is going on and enlist you to help. All that we ask is that you don’t interrupt or distract the coaches while the game is going on or challenge their decision-making DURING a game. We do encourage you to speak with coaches about any concerns you have before or after games – this is appropriate, acceptable, and best done off to the side 1-on-1. As one final suggestion, we want all our players to have fun. It’s not fun to get yelled at. Please join our coaches in sharing positive feedback and encouragement with your child before, during, and after games.
Once you register for a team, your player(s) will be assigned to a team in the free GameChanger app we use for parent communications. Once your coaches add your player(s) to a team, you will receive a notification via email (to the email address you registered with). Please signup for this app and add any additional parent/guardian contacts. This app will have a roster of all players on your team (and parent contacts), as well as coach contacts for your team – that you can message through the app. Coaches will use this app to communicate with parents about any team-related information during the season, so it’s essential that you sign-up for this app. You can download the app from GC.com for free. In addition to player rosters, the app also includes your team’s practice and game schedule. Practice schedules will be added before the season starts. Game schedules will be added once we receive the game schedule from the league and/or schedule one-off games with partner programs. Once you have the app, feel free to reach out to coaches or the team as a whole with any questions you might have.
What Do We Need for Equipment?
Please wait to purchase equipment until after you have registered and have heard from your team’s coach. Coaches will advise you on the best way to equip your player, including the programs we offer to help reduce the costs of equipping your player. That said, all players are required to be fully-equipped and this equipment varies for boys and girls. Boys are required to have a boys lacrosse stick, helmet, mouthguard, pads, athletic cup, and cleats (lacrosse, football, or soccer cleats). Girls are required to have a girls lacrosse stick, goggles (most-common) or a girls lacrosse helmet (less-common), and cleats (lacrosse or soccer cleats).
We try to reduce costs where we can and have several programs to help with equipment. First, we collect used equipment donations from existing or past players. If we have used equipment available, we provide this for free to players. HYL also purchases discounted equipment throughout the year for our “Gear Bank” – we look for deals that are at least 50% off and pre-purchase equipment. If we have discounted equipment, we sell this to parents “at cost” during our pre-season “Yard Sale.” If we are unable to provide used or discounted equipment, we also have negotiated discounts with retailers and also provide parents with guidance on what to buy and where to get the best price. Your coaches will provide more information after registration closes.
LACROSSE PARTICIPATION COSTS
Fees for the program you are registering for are detailed in the registration page for each program and range from $85 to $165 per player (depending on age group). We are generous with discounts for registering on time, for new players, for referring new players to our program, and more. Registration fees cover all practice and game related expenses. Henry Youth Lacrosse is a nonprofit and is not a commercial venture. That said, the costs of operating our program are significant. For context, the typical per-player costs for the season (which your registration fees cover) include:
These expenses alone can be between $90-$130 or more per-player. Our average registration is $130 per-player after discounts – so you can see we are trying to charge as little as possible for registration. We do hope to offset these costs more in the future through our fundraising, sponsorship, and grant efforts – as well as by registering more players (which lowers most of the per-player costs). We believe in transparency – if you would ever like more information or to better understand where your fees go, please feel free to contact us.
Player Uniform Costs
Registration does NOT include a uniform. New players (or players who need a replacement uniform) will need to order and pay for their uniform separately. Boys uniforms include a reversible game jersey, game shorts, and a moisture-wicking t-shirt worn under the player’s pads. Boys lacrosse uniforms are $72.
Girls uniforms include a reversible game jersey (“racerback”-style tanktop) and girls lacrosse skirt. Most girls choose to purchase compression shorts or “skorts” and/or some type of moisture-wicking undershirt or compression top (separately – not included). Girls lacrosse uniforms are $55.
Uniforms typically arrive 3 weeks after being ordered (and are typically ordered 1-2 weeks before the start of the season). There may be a delay in receiving uniforms for players who register late in the process. We use the same uniforms season-after-season, so returning players do not need to purchase new uniforms until they need or want new uniforms. Even then, we try to make “swaps” if we have uniforms in inventory. We do manage a list of jersey numbers and try to avoid duplicate numbers. Players can typically keep their numbers as long as they are active in our program (first come, first served + seniority).
We also provide a reversible practice jersey for NEW players at no additional cost. Returning players may purchase a new/replacement practice jersey for $20.
USA Lacrosse Membership
All players and coaches are required to be USA Lacrosse Members. Player Memberships range from $15 to $35 depending on player age. This is an annual fee and only needs to be paid once a year. If your child plays multiple seasons, joins us for clinics or camps, or any other program we offer, you do not need to pay this again until the next year. Your Membership includes benefits such as an annual subscription to USA Lacrosse Magazine, member-only discounts, supplemental insurance coverage, and more. Please visit the USA Lacrosse website for additional information.
Player fees do NOT cover player equipment (as mentioned above).
Additional Questions? If you would like additional information on our lacrosse programs or have questions, please contact Jeremy Porter at 404.641.9023 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Henry Youth Lacrosse is dedicated to growing boys and girls lacrosse participation in Henry County, Georgia. Our mission is to help children in our communities discover, learn, and enjoy the sport of lacrosse while honoring and preserving the traditions of the game. HYL helps introduce the game to children in K-8th Grade, and regardless of age, grade, means, ability, or experience, helps those children develop their skills and reach their full potential on and off the field.