Aloha Youth Lacrosse Association (AYLA) was founded in 2003 as a youth club league and player development program for Boys and Girls, from Elementary through High School. Lacrosse is the fastest growing sport on the US mainland, with more high schools and colleges fielding teams from the West Coast/Pacific Northwest to the Midwest/Southwest and East Coast. In Hawaii, lacrosse is small in numbers, but the youth league has grown every year and very quickly especially in the last few years. About 250 kids played lacrosse in Spring 2019, and we expect this number to increase to 300 for the Spring 2020. There are 4 area chapters East Honolulu, Ford Island, Windward, and new in 2019, Leeward. We continue to lobby the ILH-OIA for recognition as a varsity sport.
The formation of one, possibly two additional area high school teams in 2020, is in the works as of Fall 2019. The Schaefer Cup, renamed in honor of the late Rudie Schaefer, a founding father of AYLA and devoted youth lacrosse volunteer, is the high school boys annual tournament first played in 2015. In 2020, the 6th annual tournament will be held on Oahu where Oahu based teams (Punahou, Saint Louis and Sharks) will play Hawaii island teams from Hawaii Pacific Academy and Konawaena High School.
The majority of our players have learned the sport of Lacrosse from scratch in our league. New players can enter at all age groups, K-12. Several homegrown players have advanced to play at the college level.
THE GAME OF LACROSSE
Lacrosse requires the ability to run well and develop great hand-eye coordination. The game is derived from native North Americans, who for many centuries used the game to train for battle, or compete between tribes in place of war. The modern game for boys involves 10 players on a team, with protective gear, passing a hard rubber ball with a Lacrosse stick to score in a goal on a field similar to a soccer field. Girls Lacrosse does not allow body contact and is played 12 on 12 with only goggles and a mouth guard. Girls Lacrosse and Boys Lacrosse are radically different and are referred to as 1 Sport, 2 Games.
AYLA head coaches are certified under US Lacrosse coach training programs. Most AYLA coaches are former college Lacrosse players, and many from top schools including Navy, Army, St. Johns, Rutgers, D-III power house Salisbury and Ithaca College, and other strong programs. Their experience translates into solid development skills and values in our youth players. Many of our coaches are members of the Hawaii Men's Lacrosse League and the Wahine League of Honolulu.
AYLA GAME SEASON
Lacrosse games are held at Kapiolani Park in the shadows of Diamond Head. Teams form in late February with practices 2-5 days/week depending upon age group division. Games are played on Sunday afternoons, with a 10-game season running from April-May. 2020 Practices will start the week of February 23rd (to be confirmed).
Aloha Youth Lacrosse Association (AYLA) encourages, cultivates, and develops the interest in and appreciation of the sport of lacrosse in the State of Hawaii. We strive to advance the growth of boys and girls youth lacrosse by providing quality instruction and coaching of lacrosse fundamentals, skills, techniques, and strategies. We provide a safe and fun environment and emphasize the development of self-esteem, sportsmanship, fitness, achievement, and affirmative values that team sports provide. Through this positive and fun experience, we hope to participate in, cooperate with, and expose our Hawaii youth to other competitive organizations throughout the state, nation, and world.
AYLA is the youth lacrosse organization of the Hawaii Chapter of US Lacrosse, and is affiliated with the Positive Coaching Alliance. AYLA is 100% volunteer and a registered 501(c)(3) organization. AYLA does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race Your support is welcomed!