Maples Crossing Holds First Lacrosse Clinic

Tuesday July 18, 2023

Lizzy Deacon - left - and Kacey Bellamy

AMESBURY – Maples Crossing is taking another step toward being the go-to site for sports on the North Shore by adding a lacrosse clinic for young players.
Taught by Lizzy Deacon, a four-year starter for the Amesbury High School varsity lacrosse team and last year’s team captain, the clinic will be held for players ages 11 to 15. It will be held on the new turf field at Maples Crossing from 9 a.m. to noon between Aug. 14 and 17.
Deacon, an experienced lacrosse instructor with the Amesbury Youth Lacrosse Assn., said she approached Maples Crossing about conducting its first ever lacrosse clinic at the facility at 12 S. Hunt Road because “I want to help grow the game in Amesbury.
Joining Deacon will be Kacey Bellamy, the Maples Crossing director of Athletic Development. A three-time Olympic medalist in hockey, Bellamy will oversee the clinics, coaches and practice plans. She also will give talks each day to the players about mental toughness, goal setting and imagery.
“This is the right age to begin teaching a lot of these issues,” Bellamy said, who is committed to making all the youth players she works with stronger mentally. Deacon, who has committed to Bridgewater State University for 2024, and Bellamy will also teach the players what to expect in the college recruitment process.
Several guest coaches are being invited to help teach lacrosse skills.
The fee for the clinic is $250 per player with a $50 discount for siblings. Goalkeepers can attend for half price.
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As a hockey player, Bellamy won a gold and two silver Olympic medals between 2010 and 2018 with the USA Women’s Ice Hockey Team. She was a star athlete in high school in several sports at the Berkshire School, a hockey defensive star at the University of New Hampshire and a seven-time International Ice Hockey Federation World Women’s Championship winner.
But the first thing Bellamy talked about when she sat down for an interview two years ago when she first arrived at Maples Crossing was the adversity she had to overcome to achieve her success, and what she learned from it.
“I’ve personally experienced more failure than success in my career, and how I reacted to those failures ultimately set me up to finally reach my lifelong dream of winning a gold medal,” she said.
Losing to Canada in the Olympic gold medal game twice only propelled her to work harder and improve her conditioning, nutrition, leadership skills, and most important, her mental abilities.
As the head of athletic development for the Maples Crossing sports complex, Bellamy brings what she has learned from winning and losing at the highest levels of competition to motivate and teach North Shore youth athletes in all sports.
“Maples Crossing is exactly what I dreamed of doing after my playing career was over,” Bellamy said in the earlier interview. “I wanted to be a part of an environment where I could share advice and use my experiences to help inspire and develop the next generation of athletes.”
The 410,000-square-foot Maples Crossing sports and lifestyle complex will include six ice rinks, office buildings for sports and fitness businesses, a hotel, restaurants and the multi-sport turf field.
Bellamy’s vision is to create programming built on four pillars of player development — technical, tactical, physical and psychological. Her philosophy is to work hard, stay humble and be kind.
“In some ways, the actual sport is the easy part,” Bellamy said in the announcement two years ago of her new position. “Getting a child to listen and buy-in to the other side like nutrition, mental skills, team building, leadership are the areas in which you simply separate good from great. Those are the day-in and day-out habits I want to embed into these athletes.”

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