Lacrosse finale a tribute to Native Americans

July 6, 2010

By Christopher Huber

Hundreds descend upon Pine Lake to play faster paced-style of Chumash

Katie Mincin, of Sammamish, scores a goal for team ‘IssMish’ during the Sammamish Shootout lacrosse tournament July 3 at Pine Lake Middle School. Photo by Christopher Huber.

While preparing for their run at a girls high school lacrosse trophy at the annual Sammamish Shootout, the Mincin sisters, of Sammamish, had to come up with a team name.

They had members from Issaquah Youth Lacrosse and the Snohomish league, so of all the possibilities, naturally they thought of “IssMish,” said Katie Mincin, a rising senior at Skyline High School.

Regardless of their logic in naming the team, the girls seemed to perform to their standards at the July 3 post-season tournament.

“We work pretty well together,” she said.

Hundreds of lacrosse players, coaches and their families from Washington, Oregon, Canada and even Wyoming, converged on the fields at Pine Lake Middle School to partake in the final major lacrosse tournament of the 2010 season.

Unlike other area lacrosse tournaments, though, each of the 53 participating teams was comprised of three to five players, rather than a dozen or more, from various league teams. The playfields at Pine Lake were divided into 10 fields, thus optimizing the amount of games played.

“It’s getting a lot more intense and competitive,” said Katie Mincin, who recently played on the East Coast with the national high school girls team. “It reflects how good all the Issaquah (Youth Lacrosse league) teams did this year.”The Native American Chumash-style play takes more out of a player because it’s faster-paced.

But heat was not a factor in 2010, compared with the 2009 tournament. In 2009, many teams struggled to compete after playing four, five, or six games. But this year, the billowing clouds and light breeze, with the occasional sun break, created a mild and mellow day of lacrosse.

Unlike traditional lacrosse, with a larger, manned goal, Chumash lacrosse involves just three players per team and is played on a smaller field with an unmanned, approximately 6-foot-by-1-foot goal. The ball must hit the net only, or both posts to count.

Whereas both girls and boys teams saw a significant increase in the number of participating teams from 2008 to 2009, the 2010 Sammamish Shootout saw about as many clubs enter as in 2009. Officials from area lacrosse leagues have said they plan to add teams to their organizations by next season, though.

The shootout event acts as the Issaquah Youth Lacrosse league’s primary fundraiser, which helps the Issaquah and Skyline high school club teams purchase gear and various equipment.

Christopher Huber: 392-6434, ext. 242, or chuber@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

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