Question: > Hey next year will be my first year as starting varsity goalie and I was the JV goalie last year. What should I do for those time and room shots or crank shots. Should I try and bate the shooter or just kind of get behind it. Teams in my division from Kentucky shoot hard and fast and I kind of “shrink” in goal when I see them winding up. What did you do for these?

I wear the brine eraser chest pad, the throat guard, and non goalie gloves. And of course a cup.
>
> Thanks,
> Alex – Kentucky

Answer: Alex baiting is a good idea. It puts you in the mindset that you are dictating where you want that shooter to shoot and not to sit back like a target. By baiting a bit you want to be aggressive but be aware that they can shoot to other areas.

If time and room shots are giving you a hard time, my first suggestion is to wear more equipment. If you are shrinking a bit in the cage it is a small sign of fear of the ball. You don’t want to get hit, and that’s fine. Getting hit with the ball sucks. Now you might tell me, “I’m not afraid of the ball.” And I’d tell you you’re full of it. Every goalie has some fear, small or large, about getting hit so hard that they can’t walk or play or pee or what have you. We all go through it at every level. There is a level of trust between a goalie and a shooter and if you feel that the shooter might crank one off the soft bits you’re not alone.

So my suggestion is to pad up. I recommend that every young goalie wear a chest protector that has shoulder caps and an upper arm guard. Warrior makes the best ones in my opinion. Also, sweat pants. I know it’s muggy down there in Kentucky but sweat pants can take the sting off the ball at least. Under those pants you can put on soccer shin guards and football pants that no one is going to notice. And you’ll feel invincible. If you feel weird wearing them just wear them for practice and take them off for games. But I bet you you’ll end up wearing them for games too.

Hope that helps buddy. You let me know how it works out. Stay in touch.

Jonathan – The Goalie Guru

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