High School lacrosse in Jamaica is currently geographically focused in Kingston, enabling the schools that have lacrosse teams to compete against their local rivals. While the interest in lacrosse is very strong the JLA has had to keep a disciplined approach focused on geographic centrality of the programs to ensure sustainability and traction. Our long term goal is to see lacrosse played around the country as a fully recognized sport in the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA). The short term goal is to establish sustained programs in Kingston, enabling us to raise awareness of the sport while keeping the administration of a small league feasible with limited resources.
The annual calendar for lacrosse is generally:
November: Fall lacrosse is seen as the “off season” and will be a chance to welcome new players, schools & coaches into the Jamaica Lacrosse family with a spirit of friendship. So while there are games and a fall competition for the Matum Cup, the emphasis is on skill development and growing the game in a spirit of friendship, “Matum,” that would honor the Taino People.
Late December & Early January: Holiday Training Camp, The Holiday Camp is an incredible opportunity to develop your personal skills, while learning from international coaches. The camp is held at STGC’s Emmet Park, and is run by volunteers from the USA. It is also a great chance to play against, and develop friendships with visiting American players your own age.
January – February: This is the season for the most prestigious and coveted championships in the JLA annual calendar, The Taino & Maroon Cups. The Taino Cup, named to honor the indigenous roots of the sports of lacrosse (The sport was first played by the ancestors of the Taino people in North America) is the boys HS Championship, while the Maroon Cup honors the roots of the perseverance of African slaves in Jamaica, and is awarded to the girls HS Champions.
March: International Friendlies, The JLA is working hard to invite American HS teams to visit Jamaica on during their spring breaks which take place from mid-February to April 1, depending upon which region of the USA the school is from. The JLA will announce the scheduled games as HS teams commit to travel to Jamaica.
April: This is the oldest lacrosse competition in Jamaica and dates back to the spring of 2013 when Kingston College played St. George’s College in the first ever HS lacrosse game in Jamaica. The Cup is named after the small peice of North Street that separates these two prestigious schools. In recent years, all Kingston based HS lacrosse teams(boys & girls) have participated in competition.
July: Summer Camp, Similar to the Holiday Camp is an incredible opportunity to develop your personal skills, while learning from international coaches. The camp is held at STGC’s Emmet Park, and is run by
volunteers from the USA. It is also a great chance to play against, and develop friendships with
visiting American players your own age.
August & September: Considered the off season, but depending upon the school’s PE Department, Captains & Coaches, this would be a recruiting and training period.
The goal of the JLA is to further harness the competitive spirit and pride associated with high school sports in Jamaica into a fully fledged ISSA sponsored program.Ultimately, we would like to see our most talented student-athletes (male and female) in a position to play NCAA Lacrosse in the USA, and to compete for Jamaica in the Federation of International Lacrosse Championships.
If you are interested in learning more about HS Lacrosse in Jamaica, or are interested in starting lacrosse at your school you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org (Please respect and understand our strategy of focusing on Kingston area schools in the short term.)