BALTIMORE – US Lacrosse will expand its popular Under-15 National Championship presented by Champion and Lax Fests for 2011, and registration for eight major events is now open.
The US Lacrosse U15 National Championships will begin with four regional championship tournaments in the weeks leading up to the July national championships. The Central, Northeast, Southeast and West Regionals, also presented by Champion, will give teams opportunities to earn berths and higher seeding for the national championships, along with registration discounts.
The schedule of the four regionals:
West Regional — May 13-15 in Phoenix, Ariz., at the Reach 11 Sports Complex
Northeast Regional — May 20-22 in Amherst, Mass., at the University of Massachusetts
Central Regional — June 10-12 in Arlington, Texas, at the Patterson Sports Complex
Southeast Regional — June 17-19 in Raleigh, N.C., at the CASL Soccer Complex
Each US Lacrosse U15 National Championship Regional will run alongside an expanded US Lacrosse Lax Fest that will now include three age divisions (U11, U13 and U15).
"Both the U15 National Championships and the Lax Fests rank among US Lacrosse members’ favorite events, so it made sense to increase the opportunities for players, coaches and families to participate in them," said Beth Porreca, director of special events at US Lacrosse. "We’ve selected four great facilities to help give teams a first-class experience."
US Lacrosse membership is required for players and coaches to participate, and players who meet age requirements may participate in more than one Lax Fest and U15 Regional at the same site. To play in the U11 Lax Fest, for example, players may not turn 11 on or before Dec. 31, 2010. High school-level players and ninth-graders are permitted in the U15 National Championship Regionals, but not in the Lax Fests.
The US Lacrosse Lax Fests, formerly called Youth Festivals, are participation- and sportsmanship-focused events that do not crown champions or name all-tournament teams. The third annual US Lacrosse U15 National Championships conclude in July and crown the best boys’ and girls’ teams in the country after tournament-format competition.
Five teams have already earned bids to the 32-team US Lacrosse U15 National Championship events based on their performance at last year’s championship. On the boys side, two-time defending champion FCA has earned a bid along with the three other semifinalists: For the Love of the Game (N.Y.), NESLL Black (Mass.) and Nor Cal Elite and and Sportsmanship Award winner Jersey Ridgers.
On the girls’ side, defending champ Yellow Jackets (N.Y.) has earned a bid to nationals along with semifinalists Cardinal Girls (Va.), Pacific Falcons (Calif.) and Stars Gold (Va.) and Sportsmanship Award winner Greater Houston (Texas).
About US Lacrosse
US Lacrosse, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, is the national governing body for men’s and women’s lacrosse. US Lacrosse has more than 300,000 members in 62 regional chapters around the country. Through responsive and effective leadership, US Lacrosse strives to provide programs and services to inspire participation while protecting the integrity of the game. To learn more about US Lacrosse, please visit www.uslacrosse.org.
About Champion ®
Since 1919 Champion athleticwear has offered a full line of innovative athletic apparel for men and women including sport bras, activewear, team uniforms, sweats and accessories. Champion athleticwear can be purchased at most sporting goods and department stores. For more information please visit www.championusa.com. Champion is a brand of Hanesbrands Inc. (NYSE:HBI).