By TRT Staff with notes from worldlacrosse.sport
LOS ANGELES — A year-long vision of many lacrosse supporters to return the sport of lacrosse to the Olympic stage has been realized, with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) approving lacrosse’s inclusion in the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles on Monday, October 16.
The approving vote on Monday was made by the IOC Session, inclusive of 99 international sport leaders, was the last step of a formal process initiated by the LA28 Organizing Committee last year to add new sports to the Games in Los Angeles.
According to a release made by National Lacrosse League, the Olympic style of play will see a hybrid game format with sixes.
Sixes has unique rules that meld both box and field lacrosse into a hybrid style of play. Some basics include: a 6 versus 6 format paired with a 30-second shot clock, with games played outdoors, a field size of 70 by 36 meters. An additional change to the game is no specialist positions, only runners and goalies.
“The fast-paced, back-and-forth style of the game brings an electric energy that will surely entice new fans worldwide,” wrote the NLL.
In response, the Haudenosaunee Nationals released a statement via Facebook that reads as the following:
“The Haudenosaunee (Confederacy of Six Nations), as the originators of the game of lacrosse, are incredibly pleaser with the return go lacrosse to the Olympics. Lacrosse is America’s first sport, not played by over 80 countries of the world.
‘This is truly exciting and humbling news,’ said Leo Nolan, Executive director of the Haudenosaunee Nationals. ‘The Hard works of the international lacrosse community for including lacrosse as an Olympic sport is a wonderful example of respect and cooperation. It is humbling because when we realize the long history of lacrosse, we see that our efforts have created a new turning point for lacrosse. We con only move forward, horning all of the players of this great game.’
All-American goalie (Syracuse 1958) Oren Lyons of the Onondaga Nation, and one of the founding members of the Haudenosaunee Nationals Lacrosse Program said ‘we believe that lacrosse is also a form of healing and by participating in International Lacrosse. We have built strong ties to other peoples, other countries and other cultures. These experiences have enriched our players and made us even more aware of how lacrosse is bringing the nations of the world together in celebration of peace and friendship.’
We congratulate all who helped make this possible and offer our total support to the Olympic lacrosse movement.
‘We are grateful for the tireless commitment and vocal advocacy of so many people from around the world who helped make this possible,’ noted Claudia Jimerson, GM of Haudenosaunee NAtional’s Women’s Team Operations. ‘And for the support of World Lacrosse, the LA28 Organizing Committee and the International Olympic Committee.’
The Haudenosaunee have worked hard over the last four decades to help spread lacrosse around the world, and along with international advocates from the United States, Canada, England, Australia, Ireland and many more. We have finally achieved an important turning point to have an Indigenous-created sport be recognized at the international level.
Haudenosaunee teams played in the 1904 and 1932 Olympics. Our players won the Bronze medal in St. Louis in 1904 and participated in an officially sanctioned pre-Olympic tournament in 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.
We welcome this opportunity to build upon that historic legacy, and we have been heartened by the support we have received from the Los Angeles 2028 Committee for our inclusion. We would be thrilled to be involved in the games.”
According to ESPN, five sports were added to the LA28 Olympic Games by the IOC on Monday including cricket, flag football, baseball and softball, squash and, of course, lacrosse.