LAX at the Lake lacrosse tournament empowers girls through sports |

LAX at the Lake lacrosse tournament empowers girls through sports

J.P. Kelsey
The "LAX at the Lake" womens lacrosse tournament will be held this weekend at South Shore soccer fields. Pictured: 80 girls attended the June 23 "ReLAX" pre-tournament training camp at South Tahoe Middle School.
J.P. Kelsey/ Tahoe Daily Tribune |

Hundreds of young women from all across the country will be competing in the first annual “LAX at the Lake” lacrosse tournament this weekend. The all-female tournament is the first of its kind to be hosted in South Lake Tahoe. The tournament is a partnership between Tenacity Project, Tahoe Training Camps and several local businesses. The June 24 and 25 tournament will feature 55 teams of girls from elementary through high school age.

With locations in the San Francisco, Houston, Portland and Sacramento, Tenacity Project organizes and hosts lacrosse camps, clinics and tournaments for young women. Tahoe Training Camps is a South Lake Tahoe based training camp that specializes in all aspects of soccer play. On Friday, the tournament coordinators held the “ReLAX” pre-tournament training camp at South Tahoe Middle School to teach the girls in attendance about all of the facets of being a successful athlete.

“Through all of our programs, we build in a lot of curriculum that have a lot to do with building life skills, leadership and character,” said Theresa Sherry, CEO at Tenacity. “Our relationship with Tahoe is about giving our girls more opportunities to compete, but also with RELAX, it’s a way for the girls to experience what we’re all about. We focus on taking care of the whole person and preparing the whole person to perform at the highest level.”

Tenacity Project and Tahoe Training camps share similar, holistic approaches in their camps, both saying they were a great fit for one another. “There isn’t a lot of lacrosse being played here so we thought it was a unique opportunity to test what we could do,” said Leon Abravanel, founder of Tahoe Training Camps. “What’s cool about this is that it’s an all girls and it’s great to work with Tenacity Project.”

Tenacity Project said the ReLAX camp that was held before the tournament was designed to engage with the girls and give them an introduction to the “whole person” style of training. “A couple of summers age, we participated in Tahoe tournaments, but we decided we wanted to integrate more of a whole person, mental empowerment piece to girls sports,” said Erin Burns, director of community outreach at Tenacity Projet. “So with the ReLAX camp, we wanted to spend the day working on not just stick work, but also include things like mental performance, yoga and empowerment leadership skills. That’s what pervades Tenacity in general.”

According to Abravanel, a lot of local businesses stepped up to help out during the camp by offering discounts and other services to the parents of players. “The idea behind the camp was to have the girls work on their skills and the parents can go out and do stuff in town,” he said. “Most of the time, parents just drive to field, watch a bunch of games, then leave. This gives them the opportunity to go out and experience the Tahoe summer environment.”

Abravanel said the tournament will have teams playing at STMS, the Babe Ruth baseball field and at the Kahle soccer field.

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