PROFESSIONAL LACROSSE IS ALIVE IN CHARLOTTE
For fans of Lacrosse, you may already be aware that Charlotte is the home of one of the teams that make up the MLL (Major League Lacrosse) league.
If you were not aware, the Charlotte Hounds are one of the league’s nine teams. The team was founded in 2011 and started play during the 2012 season.
Other cities that have franchises are Annapolis, Atlanta, Boston, Columbus, Denver, Miami, New York and Rochester.
The MLL was originally founded back in 1998 and began regular season play during 2001 with an original total of six teams. Over the years there was a period of expansion as well as contraction as some new teams were added and others folded.
In 2011, looking to expand the league southward, the Hounds were added in Charlotte as well as a franchise in Columbus, Ohio now known as the Ohio Machine.
Now in their fifth full season in the MLL, the Hounds are having their best season since joining the league. After nine games the team’s record stands at 6 wins against 3 losses which puts them in a first place tie with the New York Lizards.
In the recently played Major League Lacrosse All-Star Game held in California at Cal-State Fullerton, the Hounds were represented by five of their players.
Playing in the All-Star game were Mike Chanenchuk (Midfield/Attack), Brendan Fowler (Midfield/Faceoff), Joey Sankey (Attack), John Haus (Midfield) and Mike Ehrhardt (Defense).
For those not familiar with Lacrosse, the game is played on a field 110 yards long and 60 yards wide. The goals (one on each side of the field) measure 6 feet high and 6 feet wide.
The games in the MLL consist of four 15-minute quarters. Should the game be tied at the end of four quarters the game will enter a sudden-victory overtime period.Overtime periods are 10 minutes each until a goal is scored.
Each team is the MLL is allowed to dress 19 players for each game although only 10 are allowed on the field at the same time. Positions include 3 Defenseman, Midfielders and Attackmen and 1 goalie.
The Hounds play their home games at American Legion Memorial Stadium in Charlotte.
Lacrosse is an exciting spectator sport and one of the fastest growing sports in the country.
In an October, 2015 report from the NCAA Sports Sponsorship and Participation, Lacrosse is the fastest-growing college sport in the nation.
The study showed that growth in Lacrosse (both men’s and women’s) outpaced all other college sports from 2000-2014.
So as more college teams are added and the participation rises, it is only natural that more players will migrate to professional Lacrosse teams.
Although attendance levels for MLL games are not high, they are growing and with the increased interest from fans will only get better.
With only a few games left on the schedule, if you haven’t been out to see the Hounds play, it might be a good time to get your tickets and check it out.