Whether you’re brand new to the sport of lacrosse, have a few years up your belt, or are an advanced player, it’s hard to deny that the lacrosse stick is the single most important tool that you may own.
Buying a lacrosse stick can be a bit challenging, since there is such a large variety of them with varying factors. Buying the best lacrosse sticks is an even bigger challenge, as there are a multitude of factors involve in determining which one is ideal for you.
The Best Lacrosse Sticks in 2018
This guide has a list of what we think are the best lacrosse sticks you can buy in 2018. Note that these are all complete lacrosse sticks that include both the head and the shaft. At the end of the article, we also have a buyer’s guide for the best lacrosse sticks to help you decide better in what suits you best.
Best for Men
Maverik Lacrosse Men's Charger
Amazing Mens Lacrosse Stick
An excellent defense stick, the Maverik Lacroose Men’s Charger is a high quality professional lacrosse stick that will serve players well.
Best for Women
Maverik Lacrosse Women's Charger
Incredible Attacking Womens Lacrosse Stick
The brilliant STX Crux 500 is an attacking womens lacrosse stick built to attack, shoot, pass, and score. This is a dedicated attacking and midfield stick
Maverik Lacrosse Men’s Charger – Our Top Pick for Men
The Maverik Lacrosse Men’s Charger stick comes with a Level 3 Bottom Rail that grants the user greater accuracy and power during gameplay. It features a designated grip zone that grants optimal control, making it comfortable in the hand and easy to use do to the lightweight yet dependable aluminum shaft. Its design is thoughtful, and the build quality is excellent, making it durable enough to withstand aggressive and physical play.
The 60-inch handle is a little large for attack and midfield, but it can be cut down to fit your needs. Where the Maverik Men’s Charger shines most though is in defense due to the head’s wider surface at the top for good catching.
There have been a few complains by users about the mesh’s life to be short-lived in rainy areas, so if you’re a resident of Seattle, you might want some replacements lined up, ideally a Hero Mesh. Save for that one con, there’s very little not to like about the Maverik Lacrosse Men’s Charger Complete Stick.
- Lightweight aluminum 6000-series gives it great strength without making it heavy
- Great catching due to the head shape
- Excellent for defense
- Secure grip that feels comfortable
- Some complaints of mesh bagging out in damp conditions
STX Crux 500 – Our Top Pick for Women
If there’s one stick that gets recommended every time Women’s lacrosse is mentioned, it’s the STX Crux 500. This lacrosse stick features a strong composite handle and what the manufacturers claim as “10-degree technology” that drives the ball accurately into the scoring range. It has a fast release and a unique launch pocket for extra ball control.
The chevrons can flex outward due to this launch pocket, giving a better grip on the ball when you’re moving with it. The pointed scoop allows accurate passing and shooting. For this very reason, it’s the go-to stick for most attacking and midfield women’s lacrosse players.
The stick also comes in a wide variety of colors including: Black, White/Carolina Blue, Black/Lizard, and Teal/Black.
Just about everything feels perfect with this stick, but there’s obviously a catch: it’s hard to catch with this stick (okay, bad pun). The design of the stick and the mesh is meant to improve the users shooting and ball retention, so it serves very specifically for groundballs, passing, and shooting. Defenders will thus likely find it difficult to play with this stick.
At a price of nearly $210, this isn’t a stick you’d want to buy just for experimentation. If you’re an attacker or midfielder, you should seriously consider it as first choice. If you’re a defender, steer away from it and look elsewhere.
- Extremely strong and incredibly lightweight, giving it a brilliant strength to weight ratio
- Performs brilliantly for attack and midfield
- Your shooting is destined to improve with this stick due to its launch pocket design
- This stick is built ideally for shooting, so defenders may not be able to play their best with it
- The flex on the draw might not be for everyone
STX Fortress 500 – Recommended Lacrosse Stick for Defenders (Women)
If you’re a defender in women’s lacrosse and you read about our top pick, you’re probably pointing. Worry not, for STX hasn’t forget about the importance of a strong defense. The STX Crux 500 is predominantly a stick for attackers and midfielders, and it serves that purpose well, but that doesn’t mean there’s no good alternative that would suit the backline.
The STX Fortress 500 has you covered right there. Whereas the STX Crux 500 emphasizes on precision shooting and passing, the STX Fortress 500 is all about scooping ability to help defenders win groundballs. Not only is it great for such interceptions, it also makes carrying the ball on the run a lot easier than most sticks for defenders due to its patent-pending launch pocket. The launch pocket has a tapered runner system meant to provide superior ball control through the flexing of the chevrons.
While carrying the ball, you’ll also witness reduced rattle due to a patented Elastomer Overmold that improves the ball’s stability.
Like the STX Crux 500, the STX Fortress 500 also comes in a variety of color options. These include Black/Electric, Black, Graphite/Slate, All Navy Blue, and Purple/Plum.
- Excellent scooping ability for winning groundballs
- Carrying the ball is easy due to the patented Elastomer Overmold
- Not that good for any non-defensive position
STX Stallion 200 U – Our Top Pick for Youth and Beginners (Boys)
The STX Stallion 200 U lacrosse stick takes inspiration from its bigger brother, the STX Elite Stallion 500 U, bringing a lot of those features for a fraction of the cost. This stick is, in our opinion, is the best option for boys and beginner players in the market. It compromises very little on build quality and performance, and the feel is just about right to get a new player started, and its use can be extended even to intermediate players.
The design of the stick allows for easy catching and passing, making it applicable to attackers/midfielders and defenders alike. What’s more is that it meets all the NCAA and NFHS regulations, so it can be used in games. Outside of games, it’s a great tool for practice, and helps develop confidence with passing and catching in young players. The body weighs less than one pound, which makes it a great option for children starting out.
If you want a dedicated defense version of this stick, it is available in the form of the STX Stallion 200 U Defense Length stick. It has a lot of build similarities to the standard STX Stallion 200 U, with a slightly wider face that allows for easier catching and scooping of ground balls.
- Great for beginners and young players
- Good balance with a lightweight shaft that is easy to handle
- Wide, universal head
- Dents quite easily
- Head has a lot of whip which needs to be adjusted
Brine Dynasty Rise – Our Top Pick for Youth and Beginners (Girls)
The Brine Dynasty Rise lacrosse stick for girls is a great tool for beginners and intermediate level players. Ideal for children and young teens, the stick is inexpensive, and doesn’t compromise much on performance for its price range. The Brine stick offers a wide face that allows new players to easily grab loose balls. It also makes carrying the ball a lot easier with the head being just shy of maximum TruOffset which increases the pocket depth.
The build quality of the stick is decent and will last the player a good amount before she can upgrade to an intermediate or advanced lacrosse stick. The Brine Dynasty Rise also comes in multiple colors. These include: Neon Blue, Neon Green, and Neon Pink.
Although it’s an excellent stick for young girls and even beginner adults, the Brine Dynasty Rise isn’t intended for college players. At a price point of $39.99 though, it’s the perfect lacrosse stick to get into the game.
- Affordable price makes it a popular choice for all young girls
- Wide face makes it easy to catch and carry the ball
- Not intended for use beyond beginner and lower intermediate level
The lacrosse stick is the main tool with which you play the game. Sure, men’s lacrosse has you padded up from head to toe for protection, but in the end a good lacrosse stick is what will enhance your game or hold it back. For this reason, owning a good stick is the most important part of gearing up for lacrosse. Of course, there’s a lot more to it than that, and a lot of factors go into choosing the right gear for yourself.
Complete sticks give good balance between reliability, price point, and fidelity, which is why we recommend it for all types of players. We recommend owning at least a couple of complete sticks before you consider buying individual heads and shafts. In fact, we’d leave the latter to college and professional players.
Position matters quite a bit in deciding which stick to buy. Generally, the rule of thumb is that you need a stick with a longer shaft if you are a defender/goalie, and as short as legally possible if you are an attacker or midfielder.
Generally, the head of the lacrosse stick also matters quite a bit. Most complete sticks come with dedicated heads that are better at one thing than the other. For example, a launch pocket design will greatly improve your shooting and passing, but it’s not something you want to be defending with as its narrow design makes it harder to catch or scoop and loose ball.
Defenders will want heavier and more durable sticks that give better reach. The heaviness gives better power to players when passing the ball to teammates. Flat scoops with spacious pockets are the ideal choice for defenders as they allow them to collect the ball off the ground easily.
Goalies fall in between. They need shafts that are quite long, but not as heavy. Longer shafts give goalies better reach to deflect shots, whereas the lightweight allows for better reflexes. The heads of the goalie shafts are also noticeably different in shape and size to attacker and defensive players’ lacrosse sticks.
For this reason, it’s important to keep in mind the position you play before deciding which lacrosse stick to buy.
Gender is extremely important in lacrosse, as the rules for men’s lacrosse and women’s lacrosse are very different. Men’s lacrosse is more physical and will thus require sticks that are more robust to withstand force. Heads on the shaft of women’s lacrosse are usually shorter and smaller in diameter with shallower pockets.
It’s important to keep all the differences in mind while buying a stick, and if you’re getting one for a young child, it’s best to get them one that will be similar to advanced sticks they might buy in the future.
Should I buy a complete stick or get the different parts separately?
Generally, more advanced players and professionals look to acquire separate shafts and heads and mix-match them together for the optimal custom build. While it’s obviously the most streamlined way to get the best out of you in the game, it’s also easily the most expensive one.
Is gender important even when purchasing youth lacrosse sticks?
From the age of 4-8, there’s a blur between the type of lacrosse sticks both girls and guys use. Generally, most general youth lacrosse sticks will work well for either. However, there are now more gender dedicated sticks available in the market, and you can opt to train your children with the specified stick type based on their gender.
My throwing isn’t great. What kind of a stick would suit me?
To learn how to throw properly, you’ll need a stick with a wider face and a flat scoop. The wider face will make catching a lot easier, and the flat scoop will greatly help in collecting balls from the ground. The combination overall will make your throwing a lot easier.
I want to buy a separate head, but I don’t know what to consider
You should be buying a separate head once you have some experience under your belt. If you do, you want a head that allows for great pocket depth adjustment, as that’s what individuals seek to customize most.