The acceleration of the women’s lacrosse recruiting cycle has become the topic of conversation for players, parents and coaches. In August, Long Beach (N.Y.) High and Yellow Jackets club goalie Sarah Reznick became the first freshman to commit to a college program. She’ll play at Florida, starting in 2019.

Too soon! Too fast! I’m too late! There is no hope!

Such remarks are made so convincingly that players have come to adopt these drastic statements as truth, giving up before truly informing themselves on the process. Rare cases like Reznick’s only heighten the fear factor.

But take a deep breath. There’s still some sanity within this cycle.

The IWLCA recently surveyed 211 college coaches about their recruiting focuses for the President’s Cup, an official IWLCA event Nov. 21-23 in Orlando, Fla. The results, according to new IWLCA president and Grand Valley State coach Alicia Groveston, support a refreshing reality for high school juniors and seniors who feel like their time has passed.

“There is a much larger majority of Division I, II and III institutions who are still evaluating and finalizing both their 2015 and 2016 graduation classes,” Groveston said. “If you are a junior or even a senior in high school, you can still find a place to play lacrosse in college.”

Let’s break it down, class by class.

Seniors

Forty-five percent of coaches said they still were evaluating prospects in the 2015 class. An additional 26 percent are essentially done with 2015’s, but will continue to look at a few players.

While clubs generally do not hold senior teams, look into tournaments that allow you to join a 2015 team as an independent, or contact college coaches about camp opportunities.

Juniors

You’re a 2016 and have heard that Division I schools are completely finished with your class. You’re unsure if even the top Division II or III schools have space. You feel hopeless and disappointed.

Be encouraged that you are the primary focus of college coaches this fall. Just eight percent (24 percent in Division I) of those surveyed by the IWLCA have competed their 2016 class. Twenty-nine percent of Division I coaches planned to focus almost exclusively on 2016’s.

Let these statistics enliven your motivation to come out ready to play this November.

Sophomores

Forty-eight percent of the college coaches surveyed will evaluate your class this fall. Unsurprisingly, most coaches actively recruiting 2017’s are from Division I, of which 88 percent indicated they will recruit sophomores. For 64 percent of them, it will be their top priority.

Reach out to schools of interest before your tournament season and be prepared to handle that attention.

“Recruiting timelines are important questions to ask the coach who is recruiting you,” Groveston said. “The answers can differ widely.”

Rather than wallowing in the belief that your options have run dry, reach out to coaches and ask them where they are with your recruiting class. You may be surprised by their answers.

Kate Hickman is the director of Bay Area Lacrosse Club and founder of Balance Lacrosse.

College Recruiting

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