High School Girls

July 11, 2012

Bishop Feehan (Mass.) Girls up for National Award

by Matt DaSilva | LaxMagazine.com | Twitter

Efforts to promote concussion awareness and safe play in conjunction with US Lacrosse has landed the Bishop Feehan girls' lacrosse team among five finalists for the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS) STRIVE Award for Organization of the Year. Vote here to help the Shamrocks win $5,000.

The Bishop Feehan (Mass.) High girls' lacrosse team is among five finalists for the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS) STRIVE Award for Organization of the Year in recognition of its campaign to raise concussion awareness and work with US Lacrosse to promote rules and safety.

Shamrocks coach Nancy Semple-Anderson said Tuesday the team is "neck-in-neck" with another finalist for the STRIVE Award, which is determined by voting at nycs.org/strive. STRIVE is an acronym which stands for "Sports Teach Respect, Initiative, Values and Excellence."

"This acronym reflects the values installed in all Bishop Feehan player," Semple-Anderson said. "Their passion for the sport and their commitment to upholding the spirit and value of the girls' game while ensuring the safety of players has become standard practice."

Voting began in June and ends Aug. 1. The winner receives $5,000.

In 2008, a Bishop Feehan player suffered a concussion when she was hit in the head by an opponent's stick. Doctors said she could continue to play, but months later a specialist told her to stop all athletic activities.

The following season, the Shamrocks coaching staff decided to promote awareness of the dangers of aggressive play and checking. They provided footage of that incident to US Lacrosse for use in a rules video that was distributed to lacrosse leagues throughout the U.S. Bishop Feehan continues to provide injury data to US Lacrosse to effect national change.

The Shamrocks coaches were in frequent contact with the US Lacrosse Rules Committee, experimented with protective headbands and questioned the committee chair about rules interpretations. For the past four years, they also provided US Lacrosse with statistics regarding the number of hits to the head that players received (and delivered) each season, summarizing the types of hits and whether umpires stopped the game and carded offending players.

On the field, Bishop Feehan finished 6-11-1 in the spring in just their sixth season of varsity competition. The school is located in Attleboro, Mass.

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