One of the key roles of a lacrosse defensive player is preventing the offensive players from scoring goals. He must be adept at passing fast shots and intercepting passes from the offensive players. To effectively deliver during a lacrosse game, the defensive player needs a lacrosse head suited to his playing position. Using the best defensive lacrosse heads helps the lacrosse defensemen to scoop and control ground balls with ease. The wide face, deep pockets, and strength to weight ratio of the defensive heads enable the defensive players to perform well.
This article focuses on the six best defensive lacrosse heads. The specifications, advantages and disadvantages of each defensive head were also discussed.
Table of Contents
When and why do you need a defensive head?
In a lacrosse game, the key players are the defensemen, attackers, midfielders and goalkeepers. These lacrosse players require different types of lacrosse heads to perform their respective roles. A defensive lacrosse player needs to be able to react quickly to the playing conditions.
The defensive position demands strength and agility. The heads should be able to sustain an hour of the lax game without breaking. It should also be durable enough to last for several seasons. Hence, defensive heads are built to withstand hard checks, pick-up balls, make passes and knockdown opponent’s shots. Defensive lacrosse heads have wider faces and good stiffness that enable defensemen to perform efficiently.
This is why a defensive player should use a defensive lacrosse head. To get exceptional results, it is advisable to choose the best defensive lacrosse head.
Comparison Table of 6 Best Defensive Lacrosse Heads for defenders
DEFENSIVE LACROSSE HEADS REVIEWS
This review has been compiled after series of research on the existing defensive lacrosse heads in the market.
Rating: 9.6 / 10
The Maverik lacrosse tank head is currently the best choice of the defensive head for lacrosse players.
It has many stringing options that the defenseman can use to customize the pocket position to his preference. It has a wide face that is perfect for intercepting an opponent’s ball passes. This feature also makes it easy to scoop ground balls.
It has a 4-strut design that impacts stiffness and strength to the head. Its level 5 bottom rail arrangement helps the defensive player to achieve good groundball control and quick release. Its wide face makes picking up groundballs easy for the defensive player.
It includes a True Form technological design which helps it maintain its shape without warping when subjected to hard checks. It has two screw holes that the head is firmly secured and rattle free.
This head complies with NCAA and NFHS rules. Therefore, it is acceptable for all levels of play.
- 4-strut side rail design.
- Weighs 5.5 ounces.
- Multiple stringing holes( 17 stringing holes)
- Wide face.
- Two screw holes.
- Strong and durable
- Eliminates head rattle.
- Good stiffness.
- It can sustain hard checks without warping or breaking.
- Poor fit to sticks.
- No bumper.
We highly recommend this lax head for defensive lacrosse players who want to transcend to an advanced level of play. Its wide face, stiffness and technological design makes it a desirable defensive
STX X10 Men’s Lacrosse
Rating: 9.5 / 10
This head is perfect for lacrosse players regardless of their skill level. https://www.stx.com/mens-lacrosse/team-stx/athlete/michael-ehrhardt MVP of the 2018 championship has made use of this lacrosse head.
Defensive players who want to deliver top-notch performance can use a strong and durable head. Made after the STX XCalibur head, the X10 head is by far, an improvement of the Xcalibur in every area.
This head is fitted on the STX hammer 7000 shafts which are made of 7075 alloys. This makes it strong enough to be subjected to hard checks and playing without breaking. The X10 head has a sandblasted finish that makes it easy on the hands and very comfortable to handle.
The STX trestle sidewalls are designed to make the head very stiff and strong while maintaining a lightweight. It also has many stringing holes that give a wide option of stringing patterns. The scalloped shape of the head makes it easy to pick up ground balls and score goals. Its deep offset allows for mid-high pocket placement.
The STX Forward Cant design makes this defensive head able to retain balls, improves shooting and passing speed.
The STX X10 head meets the specification and standards of the NCAA and NFHS.
- Numerous stringing holes hence many stringing options
- STX trestle sidewall design that confers stiffness and strength.
- Scalloped scoop shape.
- Weighs 5.4 ounces.
- Mid-high pocket placement.
- STX Forward Cant technology.
- Accepted and legal universally.
- Comfortable on the hands.
- Durable and strong.
- Easy to string.
- Sidewalls can get loose over time.
- Intense checks can cause the head to warp.
This head is built for the intermediate and elite defenders. We strongly recommend it to the defensemen for its durability, pocket options and construction design,
East Coast Dyes Rebel Defense Lacrosse Head
Rating: 9.4 / 10
This head is designed to dominate in a lacrosse game. From delivering hard checks, fast passes to controlling groundball, the ECD rebel head is the dream of every defensive player. It has an aggressively pinched face with a scoop that picks groundballs effortlessly. This also helps to improve accuracy.
The rebel head is made of hard plastic that can be subjected to intense checks without breaking. It has maximum stiffness which makes it able to not only take but also deliver beatings. It is very durable and can be used for many seasons.
It has many stringing holes, six top stringing holes, four bottom stringing holes and eighteen side-walks. For depth control and ball retention, it has a bottom string that can be adjusted. This head is strung with ECD’s Hero 2.0 mesh which is lightweight and suitable for all weather conditions.
It meets the specification of NCAA and NFHS. This implies that it is legal for use in high schools and college lacrosse games.
- Round shaped scoop.
- Mid pocket.
- Wight of 6.2 ounces.
- Wide face (3.125 inches)
- Many stringingholes.
- Ultra stiffness construction.
- ECD’s Hero 2.0 mesh
- Easily strung
- Can be strung to suit the defenseman’s preferences.
- The plastic can break easily.
From the features listed above, we agree that this head is a true rebel. Sturdy, stiff with good ball control capabilities, we agree that it is an excellent choice of the lax head for the defensemen.
Brine Lacrosse King II ST
Rating: 9.3 / 10
The wide and stiff head of the Brine lacrosse king II ST is perfect for defensive play. This defensive lax head is designed to be light and can withstand warping or bending. Plastic material is removed from some areas in this head to achieve it lightweight. Its scoop is built to pick up ground balls from all angles. It can be used in any weather type.
It has a lock throat feature that keeps the head and handles attachment secured. This feature also eliminates the rattle from the head.
It fosters good ball control. This can be attributed to its bottom rail design that makes it possible for mid-high pocket placement.
It has vari-flex in its scoop and bottom rail that accounts for consistent performance in any weather condition. It is universally accepted for play both at the high school and college level.
- Core tech technology
- Lock throat mechanism.
- Mid / high pocket.
- Easy to string.
- Can be heavier than other defensive heads.
Overall, this is a good choice for the elite defensive player. The durability and stiffness of the head overshadow its high cost as it would last for many seasons without warping.
StringKing Men’s Mark 2D Defense Head Strung
Rating: 9.3 / 10
The Stringking Mark 2D head is built for defense and offense. It incorporates features that it stiff and strong enough. This head is designed using advanced bone-growth optimization software to make it strong and stiff. The head is made lightweight by reducing the number of materials in the low-stress areas. This is made for a head that can sustain brutal checks and very fast shots. The increased stiffness makes the StringKing Mark 2D efficient and durable.
The scoop of the head is engineered to easily pick up ground balls at any angle. Its wider face shape also helps to increase ball control.
It has twenty-nine stringing holes and a pinched throat that makes it possible to achieve any pocket preference.
The head is firmly tightened by the means of a two-piece locking bolt that goes through the shaft. This makes the head rattle free.
It is accepted universally. It is compliant with NCAA AND NFHS rules.
- 29 stringing holes.
- Weighs 5.1 ounces.
- A two-piece locking throat screw.
- Pinched throat.
- Ultra stiffness design.
- No head rattle.
- Many stringing holes.
- Very stiff.
- There have been reports of breaking
We recommend this head for its versatility in two playing positions (offensive and defensive). Its stringing options, wider face and lock throat mechanism make it a powerful weapon in the hands of the defensive player.
STX Lacrosse Hammer U
Rating: 9.2 / 10
This head has many features required by every defensive player. The hammer U head is a great lacrosse head choice for the defenseman. Its wide face makes it easy to pick and control the ground ball. The head is designed with the c channel technology. The C channel feature provides support and stiffness that helps the head to sustain poke and slap checks. The head distributes stress throughout the bottom rail, making the head flexible and stiff.
The hammer U has 13 stringing holes that affords the defensive player flexibility in stringing up their pockets. It supports the mid to high pocket placement. This head has 3 sidewall braces that deliver more stability to the head. It
The lightweight of the hammer U head is a result of its four-chambered throat design. Excess materials were removed from the head making it light.
This head also incorporates the forward cant technology.
The scoop serves to make the head very stiff. It also improves the head’s ability to withstand hard checks.
It complies with the rules and standards of NCAA/NFHS.
- 4 chambered throat design.
- C channel technology.
- 3 sidewalls holes
- 13 stringing holes.
- Nine factory colour options.
- STX forward cant Technology.
- Weight of 5.7 ounces.
- Good strength to weight ratio.
- Does not break easily.
- Good for scooping ground balls.
- Customizable pocket position.
- Good for slap and poke checking.
We recommend the STX Hammer U head a good choice of the lax head for the defensemen. Its lightweight, ground ball control and other features make it a great weapon for the defensive player.
BUYERS GUIDE: BEST LACROSSE HEAD FOR DEFENSE.
Below are some important features that you have to consider before buying the lacrosse head for defenders. It should be noted that the skill and preferences of the defense-men can influence their choice of defensive lax head. However, the players who are new to the game should adhere to standard recommendations in choosing a head.
The Width of the Mouth:
The mouth of the defensive lacrosse head has to be very wide. The lacrosse defender has to catch and control the ground ball to keep the offense team from scoring goals. The wider the mouth of the head, the more chances of possessing the ball.
The space between the sidewalls of the head is called the pinch. A pinched head helps to improve the accuracy of the throw of the defensive player. However, the more pinched a head is, the more difficult it becomes to use it to catch balls. Therefore, the inexperienced defensemen should go for heads with less pinch. The skill level and preference of a defensive lacrosse player would determine how pinched the sidewalls of his lacrosse head can be.
The sidewalls refer to the plastic material on the side of the head and pocket. The sidewalls influence the weight and stiffness of the lacrosse head. The more plastic the sidewalls have, the more stiffness and weight the head would have. For defensive lacrosse players, a stiff and heavy head is recommended.
Most defensive lacrosse heads prefer high pocket placements. This pocket position helps defensemen to pick up and control ground balls easily. The high pocket positioning allows the defensive player to make quick passes and long clear balls.
The mid pocket is also suited to defensive lacrosse players and other lacrosse players. This pocket position is quite versatile and allows for a quick release of the ball. With the mid pocket, the defenseman can cradle his stick one-handed without worries.
The number of stringing holes
Choose a lacrosse head that has multiple stringing holes. This will allow the defensive player to customize the pocket to his preference.
Defensive lacrosse players have to deliver brutal checks during games. The head of their stick needs to be strong and durable enough to sustain these checks without warping. Hence it is important to consider the durability of the head under different weather conditions.
Strung Vs. Unstrung Head
Strung heads are manufactured in factories and have fixed pocket positions. These types of heads are perfect for players who do not know how to string their heads without help.
The unstrung heads allow players the freedom of customizing the pocket placement according to their taste. They are usually less expensive than the strung heads.
Consider your ability to string while selecting your defensive lacrosse heads.
High School & College Head Rules
The NCAA (collegiate level) and NFHS (high school level) have similar sets of rules for the lacrosse heads’ specifications.
If you purchase a head-produced year before 2018, you have to make sure they comply with the requirements of these regulatory bodies. They could be illegal according to the new rules by these organizations. If the lacrosse heads are produced after 2018, they are likely to have been designed in accordance with NCAA and NFHS standards. Hence, the heads would be legal for use in a lacrosse game.
The rules for lacrosse heads are
1. The width of the widest part of the head should be at a minimum of six inches.
2. The front section up from the throat of the head should have a minimum width of three and a half inches. The back section up from the throat of the head should have a minimum width of five inches.
3. At the height of three inches from the throat, the minimum width is three inches.
4. At the height of one and a quarter inches from the throat, the minimum width is three inches.
You need to understand why you want a lacrosse head; your playing position and your expectations.
There are numerous brands of defensive heads available in the market. This can make the process of selecting a head, long and tiresome.
You can use our buyers guide to inform your buying decision. You can also select from our best defensive lacrosse heads guide. This review on the best defensive lacrosse head discussed their features, legality, advantages and disadvantages.
Maverik lacrosse tank head is our top choice for a defensive playing position.
The second best choice is the STX X10 Men’s Lacrosse Head.
StringKing Men’s Mark 2D Defense Head Strung can be used for offensive and defensive positions.
Our budget-friendly recommendation is the Brine Lacrosse King II ST.
STX Hammer U is best for speed shots.
Maverik Kinetik 2.0 is our multipurpose defensive lacrosse head choice.
Your level of experience and taste should be the determinant for the type of defensive lax head you decide upon.
Good luck with your selection and purchase!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is LSM in Lacrosse?
LSMstands for long stick middies. These are lacrosse players that use a long pole while playing on both sides of the field i.e offense and defense. These players use their Lacrosse heads to perform a variety of functions in the course of a game. They clear the ball up, face up the ground ball and create scoring opportunities. They perform all the functions of a defensive lacrosse player at a faster speed.
What is the best lacrosse head for LSM?
Maverik Havok LSM Lacrosse Head is the best lacrosse head for long stick middies. It has features like lightweight, Xrail Technology, stiffness and a tight face that makes a great choice for defensemen and Long Stick middies.
Are defensive Lacrosse heads different from midfielder and attacker heads?
Defensive Lacrosse heads are different from the heads used by attackers and middies.
Defensive lacrosse heads are made with materials that improve strength e.g Titanium. The material of construction for the heads used by lacrosse attackers and midfielders is made of aluminum or titanium.
The shape of the head used by defenders and midfielders in a lacrosse game is usually wider than that of the attacker’s head.
What does the U mean in lacrosse heads?
The Letter “U” denotes that a lacrosse head is accepted universally. This kind of head can be used for play at all levels. In 2018, there was a change in the rules governing lacrosse such that heads labeled “HS” became illegal for use. However, lacrosse heads labeled “X”, “X6”, “10” and “U” are NCAA and NFHS approved.
What is the Level 5 Bottom Rail?
The bottom rail refers to the plastic with side walls stringing holes. The mesh is strung through these holes. The orientation of these sidewall holes and the bottom rail will influence the lacrosse stick’s throw.
The level 5 bottom rail is for players with a preference for a high pocket. Level 5 bottom rail placement is great for long-range shooters as it adds more velocity to their shots.
Why are Defensive Heads Stiffer than other Heads?
Stiffness is an important property a defensive head must-have. This is because the defensive position is quite rough. The defensive head has to be very stiff to make aggressive checks without breaking. Defensive heads are used to transfer energy to the stick of an opponent. The aim is to dislodge the ball from the opponent’s lax sticks utilizing the energy transference.