2021 Men's NCAA Division 1 Top 20 Goalie Stick Setups | Lax Goalie Rat

2021 Men’s NCAA Division 1 Top 20 Goalie Stick Setups

Been awhile since I’ve done a goalie stick breakdown but I figured it was time to check in on the top NCAA Division 1 men’s goalies and see what stick setups they’re going with.

This blog post is somewhat of a tradition around here. Here are some past posts in this series:

The list of Top 20 teams was taken from Inside Lacrosse ranking as of April 8th, 2021. By the time you read this post the current men’s top 20 might look very different as it continues to shape and morph all season long.

But as of right now, here are the top 20 teams, their goalies, and those goalies lacrosse stick setups.

I’m going to add something new this round and take a look at their shooting string setups. Lots of folks ask me what specific brand of mesh they use, to which I say no idea. Pretty much impossible to tell just by looking at photos. So we just have the diamond count.

Let’s get into it!

2021 NCAA Men Lacrosse Goalie Stick Setups

1. Duke  – Mike Adler

Mike Adler

I interviewed Mike Adler for the podcast and he mentioned he has Lars (@sidewalljedi) string up his wands. Sure enough, here’s the exact head Adler is using.

By the way, did you see this save from Adler? Or listen to his shark attack story.

2. Maryland – Logan McNaney

Logan McNaney

 3. North Carolina – Collin Krieg


Did you see Collin Krieg straight vibing?

4. Notre Dame – Liam Entenmann

Liam Entenmann

Here’s my podcast with Liam Entenmann.

5. Denver – Jack Thompson

Jack Thompson

I’ve never spoken with Jack but just by looking at this stance I would bet money this kid has been coached by Trevor Tierney and Ryan LaPlante.

Ron Howard: He was.

6. Virgina – Alex Rode

Alex Rode

7. Lehigh – James Spence

James Spence

8. Rutgers – Colin Kirst

Colin Kirst

Save edit featuring Colin Kirst.

9. Syracuse – Drake Porter


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by @drakeporter33

Save edit featuring Drake Porter. Here’s my podcast with Drake Porter.

10. Georgetown – Owen McElroy

Owen McElroy

Not sure about you guys, but I am feeling Owen’s look:

Owen McElroy Head shot

Here’s my podcast with Owen McElroy.

11. Army – Wyatt Schupler

Wyatt Schupler

Save edit featuring Wyatt.

12. Delaware – Matt Kilkeary

Matt Kilkeary

13. Loyola – Sam Shafer

Sam Shafer

Save edit featuring Sam Shafer. Here’s my podcast featuring Sam Shafer.

14. Ohio State – Alec Van De Bovenkamp

Here’s a good pic when Ale was at Furman and you can see his setup is unchanged.

Alec Van De Bovenkamp

His setup is unchanged since coming over to Ohio State.

Alec Van De Bovenkamp

15. Richmond – Jack Rusbuldt

Jack Rusbuldt

16. UMBC – Tommy Linger

Tommy Lingner

17. Stony Brook – Anthony Palma

Anthony Palma

18. Hofstra – Bobby Casey

Bobby Casey

19. Navy – Spencer Rees

Spencer Rees

20. Villanova – Will Vitton

Will Vitton


There you have it – 20 NCAA Division 1 starting goalies, 20 stick setups. Let’s recap the numbers.


  • STX Eclipse 2 – 15
  • STX Shield – 2
  • Warrior Nemesis 3 – 3


  • 12 Diamond – 19
  • 17 Diamond – 1


  • Attack Length – 9
  • Goalie Length – 11


  • 2 Straight Across – 5
  • 1 Nylon, 2 U’s – 3
  • 2 U’s – 3
  • 1 Nylon, 2 Straight Across – 2
  • 2 Nylons, 2 U’s – 1
  • 2 U’s – 1
  • 1 U, 1 Straight Across – 1
  • 2 Nylons, 1 U – 1
  • 1 Straight Across – 1
  • 1 Straight Across, 1 U – 1
  • Ghost pocket – 1

I’ve mentioned this before but I think the STX Eclipse 2 is the industry standard right now when it comes to goalie heads. The numbers don’t lie has 15 out of the top 20 goalies are using the Eclipse II.

A couple STX Shield users and a couple Warrior Nemesis 3 users round out the top 20.

Pretty much every goalie with the exception of Rutgers Colin Kirst uses 12 diamond mesh. Kirst has an interesting setup – STX Shield with 17D and a single shooter.

Gone are the days when lacrosse goalies used long shafts. All goalies pretty much use a goalie shaft (36″) or an attack shaft (30″). In some of the pics it’s tough to tell if the goalies have an attack or a goalie length so I did my best to guess. 9 attack length and 11 goalie length is what I counted.

In terms of the shooter setup you can see there is a lot of variety. The most common setup is 2 shooters straight across. 1 Nylon with 2 U’s and then just 2 U’s where also popular. Navy’s Spencer Rees is going ghost pocket (no shooters!).

What’s your goalie stick setup? Leave a comment down below

Until next time! Coach Damon

As always, if you think I messed up on any of these goalies, leave me a comment down below so I can get it fixed. 

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10 thoughts on “2021 Men’s NCAA Division 1 Top 20 Goalie Stick Setups

  1. Would love to know what these goalies are using for mesh. You should ask what their setup is including mesh and shaft type when you interview folks for the podcast.

  2. I just got one of the new Nike heads and I got a double U with 1 straight. I love the way it throws, it glides like butter out of the stick when throwing. It also retains the ball really well on a hard shot.

    1. Ahh nice been looking for someone who has that head! Haven’t tried it yet. Want to write a review for the blog? Tons of people keep asking me about that head. Gliding like butter is nice way to throw haha.

    1. Pros – Slightly Lighter. You like the feel with the release of no shooters.

      Cons – Pocket channel get ruined easily. Pocket channel needs to be strung super crisp in order to hold shape.

      That’s about all I can think of. I’ll have to interview someone who uses ghost pocket to see what they like about it. I imagine its just preference on the feel.

  3. Talk to me about shafts! Not the length necessarily but the material, and why are the carbon twigs breaking/cracking so often?? Is metal the way to go for goalies? My son has had 2 ECD Carbon Pro2 crack and/or snap in half this year alone, one last year and he’s not alone. 3 other kids(1 other goalie) on his team had the same thing happen. I’m thinking on the StringKing Metal 3, but he’s unsure about weight (there are 2) choices. Are any of these kids at the collegiate level running a setup with a Nemy3 or Eclipse2 and StringKing shaft that you know of? Any guidance?
    Thanks and love your stuff!

    1. That’s odd! Your goalie cracked a shaft? Doing what? I used the same shaft for all 4 years at college. It’s a little bent from checking pipes but never cracked. I used the Metal 2 and thought it was pretty durable. Haven’t used the Metal 3 yet but I will say the weight of the Metal 2 was great for me. I loved it.

      1. My son recently had his Wolf Element (carbon fiber) crack on a hard shot. He blocked the shot straight on about 3/4 of the way up. On the next shot which he saved the shaft completely cracked and the head flew off. I suspect what happens with these carbon fiber shafts is they get micro fractures/weakend and it’s not noticeable and over time just break.

        1. Exactly! Worked about 10 years in composites in the aerospace business. Just like carbon hockey sticks, which we see the pros blow apart all of the time, carbon shafts are highly susceptible to impacts, and are a “consumable” for their performance advantage. Any sort of impact can create small hidden fractures inside the laminate which can, in time, grow to the point of failure when stressed. So, if you like the weight savings and release advantages, and have an unlimited budget, keep a half dozen on hand and a complete stick next to the field as a backup.
          Happened to catch a deal and just fitted my HS senior with a carbon shaft, going to see how it goes. . . we will have a backup setup with an alloy shaft ready to go! 😉

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