Tag Archives: Women’s sports

Longstreth Sporting Goods Hires Jana Withrow as Director of Field Hockey

Jana Withrow’s years of dedication, passion and proven commitment to the game of field hockey will strengthen Longstreth’s team.

Longstreth Sporting Goods is extremely pleased to announce Jana Withrow will be returning as Director of Field Hockey. She will lead the field hockey team with a focus on Longstreth’s sales efforts, and will coordinate equipment and uniform/apparel product offerings to build a cohesive experience for our college, team, and club customers. Longstreth co-owner John Schaefer says, “We are very happy that Jana is returning to Longstreth to lead our Hockey team, and believe that she and Alli Lokey together will offer the best customer service available by combining true hockey expertise with our great selection of hockey products, including from our core brands TK, Gryphon and Ritual.”

Jana has an extensive hockey background as a top-level goalie and coach. She was an All-American and National Champion at the University of North Carolina. After college, Jana earned a goalkeeper position on the USA Women’s National Team – where she was a member of the team during the 1998 World Cup and 2000 Olympic Qualifier games. Keeping her hand in the game, she spent a few years coaching at the University of North Carolina and became head coach of Columbia University in 2009. She joined Longstreth Sporting Goods in 2010 as Field Hockey Manager where she managed our hockey business to develop the best equipment and bring it to the U.S. market. Jana has spent the last six years managing hockey sales for Harrow Sports.

“I am thrilled to be joining the Longstreth team,” states Withrow. “I share their values, their focus on innovative products and passion for the game.  With my knowledge of the marketplace, and Longstreth’s history in women’s sports, I know we can offer customers a great experience.”

Jana_Headshot

Longstreth Sporting Goods has been dedicated for more than 40 years to encouraging and developing women’s sports.  While specializing in Field Hockey, Lacrosse, and Fastpitch Softball, Longstreth can also outfit almost any team or athlete.  Located approximately 30 miles northwest of Philadelphia, PA, Longstreth provides teams across the United States with the best equipment, uniforms/teamwear and footwear. Visit www.longstreth.com to see the full selection of products.

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Longstreth’s Super Fan!

Longstreth Sporting Goods’ retail store is second to none. As a forerunner in the female athlete industry, our company and the retail store are “the go-to shop” for many field hockey, lacrosse, and fastpitch softball players. Being part of the local community for almost 40 years, Longstreth’s retail store has been a place where generations of women shop for their gear.

This year, we believe we’ve met one of our ultimate super fans. Kayla Miller became a Longstreth shopper when she started playing lacrosse in middle school and continues to be a patron and brand ambassador today as a high school coach. Kayla is lucky enough to live close to our retail store and has visited many times per year to purchase the latest women’s lacrosse gear. Along the way, she began to collect our yearly lacrosse catalog and keeping them in a special binder. This summer, she brought them all along with her to the WPLL games to get them signed by the featured athletes. That’s where we met Kayla and learned just how dedicated she is to Longstreth.

It’s always a pleasure for us to meet teams of athletes, families, and players – young and old. Many families make Longstreth a destination stop to visit during summer vacations. Teams bring busloads of their players for special shopping days. Mothers who were once shoppers and athletes themselves, bring their daughters to carry on the Longstreth tradition. And fans like Kayla continue to share our mission in being dedicated to the female athlete and growing the girls’ game.

Are you a Longstreth Super Fan? Share your story with us on our facebook page (@longstreth.sporting.goods) or email us at Longstreth.Sports@longstreth.com using the subject line #LongstrethSuperFan .

Longstreth’s Super Fan! Kayla Miller

Kayla Miller, Longstreth’s Super Fan!

Visit our website to check out the latest field hockey, lacrosse, and fastpitch softball equipment. Longstreth Sporting Goods specializes in bringing the best of the best equipment to the female athlete. To plan a visit to our retail store in Spring City, Pennsylvania or take a virtual tour on our website.

Julia Young USA Field Hockey Sponsored Player

Get to Know Longstreth Sponsored Field Hockey Player Julia Young

As female athletes, we all have a passion for our sport. Unfortunately, injuries are often part of the game. Longstreth Field Hockey recently sat down with USA National Team Defender, Julia Young to discuss her recent injury and recovery. Her positive attitude and mental strength are inspiring.

Julia Young USA Field Hockey Sponsored Player

Julia tore her ACL, medial meniscus, and sprained her MCL during the Pan American Cup last summer. She had ACL reconstruction surgery using a patellar tendon graft and a meniscus repair. Luckily, her MCL was able to heal on her own. Doctors think she’ll be able to be back on the field sometime in May.

“The hardest part of recovery so far was the first week,” Julia told us, “The pain was the worst I had ever felt and I honestly had no idea how I was going to get through it mentally.” The following month was frustrating, learning to navigate around on crutches and depending on others for help. “My recovery schedule is crazy – going to physical therapy 3 times a week and have at-home exercises. I also do upper body lifts 3 times a week and watch all the team practices.”

Team USA field hockey players and coaches have supported Julia throughout her challenging journey. They’ve continued to keep her involved. “The supportive team culture has helped me a lot getting through the mental challenges of this injury,” said Julia, “and makes me feel like I’m still out on the field with them every day.”

When faced with an injury that keeps you on the sideline for a while, it’s important to stay mentally tough. Julia suggests to give yourself time and don’t get discouraged if you are not healing as quickly as you’d hope. “Your body can do amazing things, but you have to give it time to heal,” advises Julia.

We asked Julia what she is most excited about once she is fully recovered. Julia says she can’t wait to get out on the field and be competitive again, and practice every day with her team mates. “You don’t realize how much you love to compete and play, until you can’t.” We wish Julia a quick, healthy recovery and can’t wait to see her playing field hockey again.

Longstreth Sporting Goods is proud to sponsor many of the U.S. Women’s National Team players. Visit the Longstreth Sporting Goods website to learn more about our sponsored Field Hockey players.

Get to Know Longstreth Sponsored Field Hockey Player Ali Froede

Ali Froede, a Longstreth Sporting Goods sponsored player, recently did a Q&A session with us on her experience at FIH Hockey World League Semi-Finals. Froede has been a member of the USA Field Hockey Women’s National Team since 2015, where she plays defense. She attended Miami University of Ohio, and while there, was awarded First-Team All MAC twice, as well as NFHCA All-West Region Second Team in 2014.

Sponsored Field Hockey Player Ali Froede

First things first, we had to know what her top three favorite moments on the trip were in regards to hockey, and playing in the tournament. She replied that her favorite memory was, of course, winning! She elaborated and said, “This was the first time we have ever won a quarterfinal game – let alone make it to the finals and win.” Her second favorite moment was the thrill of her first major tournament. She said that South Africa was a lot of fun to play in, and that the environment itself was great. Lastly, she recalled that one day at practice two boys were standing at the fence watching them. She said that the team then invited them to play around, and also gave them USA pinnies and sticks, which the boys were super excited about.

We were also curious as to how the team moved past the losses to Argentina and South Africa. We wanted to know if it made things more difficult, or if it made them work even harder. Froede explained that losing to Argentina was not as bad as losing to South Africa. She gave her reasoning when she said, “One, they were the host nation so with that brought a huge supportive crowd that made themselves heard. Two, we felt that we could have definitely won that game, but let exterior factors inhibit us from playing our game – like the refs and the crowd.” In order for the team to get back on track, Froede said, “As a team, we came together and got back to our basics. We are constantly focused on ‘doing our jobs’ – a staple we often remind ourselves to do, and we started playing UN1TED, which ultimately started us in the direction of the finals.”

Many new players have been added to the USA Field Hockey Women’s National Team, and we were curious how that affected their game. Froede said, “A focus of the tournament was learning how to play together with new faces. As one of the newer players, it was a great experience to play so many games and gain confidence in myself and my skills on the field.”

There are a bunch of neat things to see in South Africa, that you can’t typically see here, so we wanted to know what fun adventures the team went on while they were there. Froede said that on the last day they were in South Africa, they got to go to a lion park. “My favorite was playing [with] and petting the baby lions!” said Froede. “They were so cute and fluffy, and it was amazing getting to touch an animal you normally don’t get to see that close! We also got to feed giraffes, see zebras, wild dogs, and wildebeests. It was a great way to end the trip.”

As the Pan American Cup approaches, we wanted to know what the team has learned from this experience in order to have further success in Pan Ams. Froede graciously responded, “We learned that we perform our best when we focus on our individual jobs, and play together and UN1TED. Going into the PAC we are going to take one game at a time and focus on our jobs for the moment.” Although playing in South Africa was fun, Froede is looking forward to playing in front of a home crowd for the Pan Ams.

Longstreth Sporting Goods would like to congratulate the USA Field Hockey Women’s National Team on their extraordinary win in the FIH World Hockey League Semi-Finals, and wish them further success in the Pan American Cup. Visit the Longstreth Sporting Goods website to learn more about our sponsored Field Hockey players.

How to Keep your Women’s Lacrosse Stick Looking New

how to guide to womens lacrosse sticksIt’s important that players know how to best take care of their women’s lacrosse stick, as well as the best places to practice. These are just a couple of tips for keeping your lacrosse stick looking like new.

You may not think that the temperature affects your women’s lacrosse stick, but it does, DRASTICALLY! Your women’s lacrosse head is made of plastic and could warp if you leave it in the heat for too long. It’s best to keep your lacrosse stick inside your house, where the temperature will remain consistent. Storing it in a car or garage – especially in the summer time – could be too hot. It’s important to keep in mind that warped women’s lacrosse heads are not covered under warranty, so storing it in a moderate temperature is a crucial tip.

It’s really hard to avoid playing in the rain, but water can damage the stringing of your women’s lacrosse stick over time. So if you want to go outside and practice in the rain, try practicing with a back-up women’s lacrosse stick.

Another great way to keep your stick longer is to practice on a grass or turf surface. Although it may be convenient to practice in your driveway, the hard pavement could damage your women’s lacrosse head and stringing when picking up ground balls. Practicing your lacrosse skills on grass or turf will prevent the lacrosse head from becoming scratched and the strings from being frayed or torn.

There are a few good habits you’ll want to start that will help, too. Treat your women’s lacrosse stick with care by never leaning on or throwing it. Avoid using your women’s lacrosse stick as a cane to prevent warping the head. By leaning on your lacrosse stick, you are bending your head and causing more harm than good. Keep your stick safe by never throwing it to the ground. Even if you’re frustrated by a bad call or a really bad practice, it’s not worth cracking the head or damaging the lacrosse shaft.

Caring for your women’s lacrosse stick is really important and can save you a lot of money in the future. Warranties do not cover self-inflicted problems like warped heads and damaged strings. To avoid the hassle of finding a new women’s lacrosse stick, simply follow the tips listed above to keep your current stick as new as possible.

If you have any lacrosse related questions regarding your stick, visit Longstreth Sporting Goods’ Ask the Experts page. Longstreth’s sports managers are always helpful with answering questions and giving suggestions. Longstreth Sporting Goods is your one-stop shop for all your women’s lacrosse needs.

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Let’s Talk Women’s Lacrosse Handles

Women's Lacrosse Sticks

Choosing the correct women’s lacrosse stick can be a tough decision and can potentially affect your game. The head and stringing of the lacrosse stick are essential, and the handle is just the stick that the head is on, right? Wrong! The handle of the lacrosse stick can also affect a player’s game tremendously.

The two major types of lacrosse handles are composite and alloy. While many girls quickly jump on the composite bandwagon, it’s important to fully understand the setbacks and advantages to each material. These types of handles can be compared on four different levels: the handle’s performance in the weather, its stiffness, the range of designs it can come in, and its weight.

How the handle acts in different weather conditions is what many girls base their handle preference on. If you want a handle that will remain more temperate in extreme heat or the frigid cold, then composite material is right up your alley. By comparison, your alloy handle will fluctuate depending on the weather. Also, if you are playing with an alloy handle in the rain, chances are your hands will slip. However, there is hope for all of you alloy lovers out there! All of these problems can be simply fixed by either using cloth tape on your stick or by wearing gloves.

Another important factor is how stiff or malleable you want your stick to be. Since composite handles are made up of a mix of materials, they can be more prone to breakage. However, the bright side to the stick being less stiff is that it can bend. Certain handles are designed to slightly bend with enough force, which is called flex technology. This can add extra whip to your passes and shots. Alloy, on the other hand, cannot bend, making it a much stiffer stick and less prone to breakage.

If design and colors of your shaft are important to you, then you may lean more towards a composite handle. Composite handles tend to come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and finishes that make them more appealing to players. Alloy, unfortunately, is more limited.

Who wants to run with an obnoxiously heavy, awkwardly balanced, lacrosse stick up and down the field? Certainly not many. Alloy handles used to be really heavy but now, thanks to modern technology, they can be just as light, if not lighter, than a composite handle. Most alloy handles are made of scandium, titanium, or a mix of the two, called Sc-Ti.

There are so many important things to consider when choosing the best lacrosse handle for you, and that is why Longstreth Sporting Goods is here to help. Both the associates in the Longstreth retail store and customer service are here to assist you in choosing your dream lacrosse stick. We are prepared to answer any and all of your women’s lacrosse related questions in order for you to get everything you have ever wanted out of a lacrosse stick. Ask us anything!


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Features and Functions of a Women’s Lacrosse Head

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Women’s Lacrosse Head
Women’s Lacrosse Heads differ widely from the men’s version to better fit the needs of the women’s lacrosse game. While the men’s stick has a deep mesh pocket to ease catching and carrying the ball, the women’s stick has a tighter pocket that requires proper technique to keep possession while cradling.

Curve of the Scoop
The scoop is the widest part of the women’s lacrosse head and is used to pick up the ball and also can improve accuracy when passing and shooting. Scoops vary in width and curvature. They range from a flat design where the scoop has a little curve at the top, to a more “U” shape, where the scoop has a lot of curve at the top. Heads with a flatter scoop are designed for developing players because it makes it more suitable for picking up ground balls.  The “U” shaped scoop will channel the ball better during a pass or shot, making it perfect for improving shot accuracy.

The Sidewall and Angle of the Scoop
Sidewalls, like the rest of the head, are made of plastic mold and connect the strings to the lacrosse head. They vary in flexibility and depth. The shape and depth of the sidewalls directly affects ball control. A lower sidewall allows for a deeper pocket, which increases ball control. Most elite heads have dropped sidewalls for this reason. Beginner sticks tend to have flatter or straighter sidewalls to help teach younger players proper technique. The angle of the scoop from the sidewall area determines the way the ball will be released from the head. An extreme angled scoop provides more whip and accuracy when shooting. A flatter scoop will have less whip and not as advanced ball control.

Weight of the Head
The weight of the head is usually due to the head having more plastic, which not only increases the weight, but also makes it stiffer. This is beneficial to defenders, midfielders, and other players who are often stick-checking and aggressively going after ground balls. A lightweight head usually has thinner sidewalls and is more flexible. Many attackers, or midfielders that shoot, like having a head that is lightweight because it makes them feel like they have more control. A light head will make it more flexible, which can make them ineffective on ground balls and landing hard checks. It also makes the head more susceptible to breaking.

Width of the Head
Narrow heads are good for ball retention and accuracy, while wider heads have more surface area for blocking and catching the ball. Wide heads tend to be more desirable to defensive players. Attackers tend to like the more narrow heads, and midfielders look for a balance depending on whether they are more offensive or defensive.

Ball Stop
This thin piece of rubber or foam that is meant to cushion the ball as it sits in the pocket. Women’s lacrosse heads feature a larger ball stop area since the pocket is not as deep as the men’s and the ball comes in contact with the ball stop more often.

The Pocket 
The pocket is where the ball resides. Pockets include the center piece, nylon stringing around the center piece, and leathers or thicker nylons on either side of the center piece. There is also a top string at the top, which may need to be replaced depending on what surface you play on and how often. The sidewalls strings, in conjunction with the top string, help to secure the pocket to the head. Sidewalls strings are also susceptible to breaking and are usually easy to repair. The last strings in the pocket are the shooting strings. They can be strung into a head in different shapes and positions, as long as they meet the stringing requirements. The most common shape and combination is a shooting string at the top threaded straight across, and then a U or V-shaped string below.

Visit http://www.longstreth.com for details on the huge selection of women’s lacrosse sticks, heads, and gear. Longstreth Sporting Goods specializes in bringing the best of the best equipment to the female athlete. Check out the great selection of women’s lacrosse equipment at Longstreth.