Lacrosse Differences

Lacrosse in Montana is a fairly new sport, both for males and females, but the male team was established before a female team was. Lacrosse is not school affiliated, but is quickly gaining in popularity, and the teams do not have a lack of devoted players. Though the players love the sport, there are quite a few differences between female and male lacrosse.
One of the female lacrosse players, junior Ali Bierman, believes that there are inequalities present in all sports, but says that the differences between guys’ and girls’ lacrosse are pretty extreme.
The boys lacrosse team tend to have a different view.
According to junior William Cannon, “the issue of sexism in lacrosse is nonexistent, both males and female lacrosse players are content with their role in the sport.”
Cannon adds that “women’s lacrosse is a lot of fun to watch and the girls that play are all amazing characters, especially here at BHS.”
“I think sexism in sports has become a thing of the past, and rightfully so,” continues Cannon. “You have to understand the history of the sport, both original purpose of the game and the time era in which lacrosse was made the modern sport that it is now.”
Bierman says, “I think there’s definitely sexism, but the rules of lacrosse are a major contributor to being sexist. So for example, guys can check more forcefully and girls can only stick check.”
The rules of lacrosse differ almost entirely between the guys’ league and the girls’ league.
“I think some people don’t understand the differences in the sports so it can get confusing if it is sexism, but guys’ lacrosse and women’s lacrosse is completely different. It’s literally like two different sports. “
Libby O’Donnell, sophomore, another player on the female team explains, “a lot of the times people can see inequality with, like, the guys’ sport is more physical contact and aggression, where girls’ lacrosse is more skill and strategy. That’s the whole point of the game,” She continues, “they’re two completely different sports so it’s hard to compare them as sexism.”
Female lacrosse player Allison Reinhardt, junior, agrees.

“The way the game is played is set up differently. There are minor changes in how the field is set up and rules; girls cannot have direct contact with their sticks and boys can. I honestly think it’s an issue that all teams are facing,” says Reinhardt.
“I think we should be able to wear helmets. Our brains are just as important as the boys,’ equal in capacity and knowledge, and that’s important,” she says.
Reinhardt believes the biggest issue for the girls’ team is a lack of equipment.
“I think that the big issue is the equipment we have, where boys have more protection. This past year, we suffered from about four concussions over the season and that’s not good,” says Reinhardt.
“But I also think there’s more attention paid to the boys because there’s more media coverage. The newspaper did an article on the boys and there was no mention of the girls, and we are state champs, we played under the lights! I think we need more recognition,” Reinhardt explains.
According to Sarah Donovan, the coach of the girls’ lacrosse team, there are many causes of the dichotomy between the teams.
“There’s one girls lacrosse team and at least two boys teams, and I know our girls won the state championship last year and it wasn’t in the newspaper, but the boys came in second or third and they were on the front page of the newspaper.”
She continues, “we won and no one even covered it. I think as far as putting it into the media, specifically in Bozeman, it’s pretty bad that they don’t,” shares Donovan.
Donovan also works in the physical training room at BHS, and says when it comes to funding differences, “it’s hard because [the boys] have more kids, they have a larger budget, obviously, paying to play.”
The boys lacrosse team tend to have a different view.
According to junior William Cannon, “the issue of sexism in lacrosse is nonexistent, both males and female lacrosse players are content with their role in the sport.”
Cannon adds that “women’s lacrosse is a lot of fun to watch and the girls that play are all amazing characters, especially here at BHS.”
“I think sexism in sports has become a thing of the past, and rightfully so,” continues Cannon. “You have to understand the history of the sport, both original purpose of the game and the time era in which lacrosse was made the modern sport that it is now.”

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