Frick hopes to grow lacrosse tourney |

Frick hopes to grow lacrosse tourney

Jordan Simon tries to get around Wally Magill during a lacrosse tournament on Sunday at Steamboat Springs High School.

— There are always dozens of things to worry about before an event, Betsy Frick said.

The coach for the Steamboat Springs High School girls lacrosse team has been putting on a fall lacrosse competition annually — sort of, anyway — since 2012.

It’s sort of a fundraiser, she said, but she had to take last year off as she dealt with an injury to her knee, and any momentum that had been built was lost in the interim.

This year, she sought to include three age groups for both boys and girls playing a style of lacrosse most athletes rarely play, all while trying to be as inclusive as possible, reaching out to every group in Steamboat and other programs and high school teams around the region.

On top of that, there was another last minute complication: Only one fourth-grade boy signed up.

What to do? Tell him, “Sorry. We can’t make it work.”? Play him with the fifth graders, who were slated to scrimmage the sixth graders? Or, play him with the sixth graders so he’ll actually be going up against a fifth grader only a year older instead of two?

She opted for the latter, and to say the least, it worked out. The boy scored a pair of goals and best illustrated what Frick was working for the entire time.

“They had fun, and it was competitive, and that was the goal,” she said. “My main goal is just to grow the sport.”

As a fundraiser, it didn’t exactly work out this year, not after paying the referees, but Frick said the event drew nearly 50 athletes total, including 17 girls she’s either already working with or would love to bring into her high school program.

The variation of the sport, Chumash lacrosse, is particularly suited to low numbers and a casual atmosphere. It puts teams of three players each against one other, all trying to score on a small goal that’s far skinnier than what a player shoots at in a real game.

The regular season for high schoolers is still more than five months away, but Frick said it was great for all involved to get a little taste of the sport before the snow flies.

“I’d love to grow it,” she said of the tournament. “Hopefully, we’ll get the word out much better by next year. We would love to get teams from out of town. We’d love to get people to think, ‘Let’s go see the fall colors in Steamboat and play lacrosse.’”

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email or follow him on Twitter @JReich9

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