The History of Girls Lacrosse

Girls Lacrosse

The history of girls lacrosse starts in Scotland in 1890. If you have ever seen a womens lacrosse game, then you might have wondered how the women's game evolved from a male dominated sport that was played to resolve conflict.

The headmistress of a school called St. Leonards visited New Hampshire, where she saw a lacrosse game taking place. She later wrote in her diary that, "It is a wonderful game, beautiful and graceful. (I was so charmed with it that I introduced it to St. Leonards)".

The game was adopted by young women, and they started an inter-dormitory competition. The winners were awarded a "shield of victory."

The first reported house matches were in June of 1890.

The St. Leonards Gazette reported and made commentary on the match saying, "Whether the game on the whole has proved successful may be doubted but at least we have advanced so far in its mysteries as to get a good and exciting game in the field with teams of eight and they last one hour not including a ten minute interval in the middle. After which goals were changed... the game was close and fast but the play rather wild and far too much on the ground."

As you can see, the newspaper thought that the game was played too much on the ground. Although there are a lot of ground ball opportunities in modern day womens lacrosse, the game is mostly aerial now.

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Girls lacrosse

What has changed?

A lot has changed in the history of girls lacrosse since 1890.

The number of players, the position of players on the field, and the equipment have all changed a lot since women's lacrosse was introduced in Scotland.

The old sticks had large nets, short handles, no bridge, and were made of wood.

The positions started as teams of eight in 1890, to teams of 12 (modern day womens lacrosse) in 1913.

Womens lacrosse

Bringing it back to the USA

The history of girls lacrosse was brought back to the United States of America by a woman named Rosabelle Sinclair. Rosabelle would later become the Athletic Director of Bryn Mawr School.

From there, Women's Lacrosse would grow into the fast paced sport of today.

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