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Georgia Select is a team made up of top level Georgia High School players who will participate in both local and travel events over the summer and next fall. 

Georgia Select is targeted for players who want to compete at the highest level. This is a team that should compliment other things players are doing in the summer (Top205, Team Camps, other summer teams, etc.). We try not to directly compete with other local teams such as we have had players in the past play on multiple teams (Trident, Team GA, Atlatna Elite, etc.) . However, as always there may be some scheduling challenges for players so certain commitment levels will be expected and details of our games, practices and the costs will be spelled out further for those who are nominated and/or selected. 
 
Our primary travel events will be to NJ in July and to Maryland in the fall and full participation is required (most likely 1 more summer travel event). In addition to our core team we will also name and carry a set number of alternates for local events where more of the over lap and conflicts of playing on multiple teams typically exist. We plan on playing in the Southeast Championship at Stone Mountain in May and along with some other local tournaments.
 
Our first travel event to NJ is the SweetLaxin’ Tournament hosted by Chuck Apel who was the winning USA U19 Head Coach last year. The dates for this event are 7/10/2010 and 7/11/2010. Our goal for this event is simply to play against quality competition and improve as players. While there are typically college coaches in attendance this is not a showcase tournament and we do not play in this event with the main goal being exposure to college coaches, we play more so to improve as lacrosse players.  We have played in this event the last few years and it is great.  As an alternative we may opt for the Tri State tournament in Mercer NJ that is the same week.
 
In 2008 Georgia Select hosted a team tournament in conjunction with UpLax, headed up by Coach Charlie Toomey from Loyola and Coach John Tillman from Harvard. In lieu of hosting another late summer local event this year Georgia Select will add a fall event and travel to an UpLax tournament in Maryland for the first time. Unlike our local events and even the SweetLaxin’ Tournament, this event will be a key recruiting opportunity for players from Georgia and fits well with our philosophy of how and where our Atlanta players will get the best exposure. The fall event in Maryland is an invitational tournament and this years tournament had well over 100 college coaches in attendance. 
 
Our main objective for Georgia Select is to help players improve their lacrosse skills; traditionally fielding very strong teams it is only natural that certain players will have both the ambition and the ability to play in college.  Our philosophy in terms of getting players exposure to colleges is to play against very good competition in the summer, to improve significantly over the summer and then later in the summer or fall, try to get the appropriate exposure after the boys have become better players. Obviously each player is different but what we have seen is that the difference in a players’ skills form when they first start with us as compared to how they play when the summer is over is fairly dramatic. The ability to play with better players and to get targeted, individualized instruction that they can’t get during a regular season makes a significant difference. We want the kids to get exposure at their best, against the best – but again, we are only one piece to the puzzle.  Another key factor as it relates to recruiting is the fact that the GA Select coaches have numerous contacts in the lacrosse community and can simply pick up the phone and make a call on a players behalf.  We have helped players get recruited at the DI, DII and DIII level and have good credibility based on our past recomendations.  Having said all of that, we will do all we can to help our players but nothing is guaranteed nor are we doing this team just as a recruiting platform.
 
While playing on a travel team like GA Select is important it is equally important for players to also participate in individual camp environments such as Top205, King of the Hill, Peak 200, Blue Chip 225, Jake Reed Blue Chip, Elite 180, etc (easier said than done). Playing in mixed team tournaments where Atlanta players play on teams with players from other areas is very helpful. 
 
The reality of where lacrosse is in its’ growth stage in Georgia in 2009-2010 is that a small handful of our very top players are going to get noticed no matter where they play in the summer, the challenge is that we have so many other players that are good enough to play at the next level that simply are not getting the exposure they deserve early enough in the recruiting process or at a high enough level based on the maturation of lacrosse in Georgia as it stands today. While each year Georgia is getting better and deeper it is still a challenge right now to get noticed compared to other areas that are traditional lacrosse strongholds. 
 
A lot of what determines the success and ability of a player in Georgia to get noticed is up to the player himself; a proactive combination of marketing oneself with a bio and video highlights to targeted schools and then getting the right exposure, at the right time from those targeted schools if possible is very effective. Getting this information out prior to summer schedules is helpful in an effort to have interested schools hopefully see the player in action. We will do all we can to assist in this process to leverage relationships we have through out the county at DI, DI and DIII schools.
 
This is still a bit of a challenge. While some summer teams, Camps, Select Teams and other Commercial Teams will claim that their teams and their events will provide this for you we do not see that being the case and feel that many over promise what can really be done. Do your homework and have realistic expectations. 
 
In addition to the top of the top camps, it is just a simple fact that most colleges still have the luxury of scouring through their traditional recruiting grounds for their top choices and as they recruit in these areas over and over they are identifying new prospects earlier and earlier from these talent laden programs, in most cases, prior to their Junior year in High School.  Most players in Atlanta still find it difficult to get into some of the top of the top camps and do not hit anyone's radar until they are rising seniors - yes, there are exceptions, but not too many.  This leaves very few slots and even less time for our rising seniors to get noticed (again, the top few in Georgia may be identified by their Junior years but not as much as up North). Having said all this Georgia players need to be strategic and specific in their efforts. 
 
One trend we have identified is that many teams will target certain players for their recruiting class but fall short for various reasons and are left with unanticipated “open” spaces to fill late in the process. If a player can market themselves well and then get noticed when there is an unanticipated opening there may be opportunities with teams that otherwise would not have recruited the player and they may be up against less competition as most other top players will have committed somewhere already.   Being able to play in events late in the summer or fall can be an ideal situation for players from Georgia and again is why we are participating in the fall UpLax event in the fall of 2010. 
 
We will help our players market themselves prior to this event, improve their skills over the summer and hopefully peak at this tournament. If their summer was successful they should be a better player in the fall than they were in the summer, thus exposing them at their best and at a time when teams are making active decisions.  
 
Our practice schedule with be light and flexible throughout the summer, picking up based on availability prior to our travel events. In addition to traditional practice we will also offer 1 on 1 or small group session for members of the team (and/or their high school teammates or friends if interested).
 
The SweetLaxin’ Tournament and the UpLax Tournament in the fall are mandatory for the core players selected but we can be flexible for other local events we may play in as it relates to other commitments players may have.
 
The best way to determine if you think you are right for this team and to see if this team will provide what you are looking for in a summer team is to talk to others who have played on Georgia Select in the past (see the website for past rosters). 
 
One of the good things, which is also a challenge for the growth of our sport is that there are beginning to be more and more different opportunities for players. Players will need to make harder and harder decisions as to what teams to commit to in the summer as more opportunities arise and more conflict comes with them.   Our advice is to be realistic in your expectations of any team, camp or event you decide to participate in this summer.
 
Remember, kids should be involved in multiple summer activities. At this point in time there is no one single team that can offer everything. Playing on 1 or 2 different teams and then participating in other camps and/or clinics will help players both improve their lacrosse skills and get exposure to colleges if that is their desire. 
 
I am sure you will have questions…..we look forward to talking with you…..
 
Coach Pritts
Coach Holthaus
 

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