SPARKS, Md. — There’s no higher honor in the sport than playing for the U.S. National Team and US Lacrosse is expanding the opportunities for elite level players to gain access to the Team USA experience.

The US Lacrosse National Team Development Program (NTDP) is a three-phased process for high school-aged boys’ and girls’ players that leads to USA Select teams. The goal of the NTDP is to provide high-level training for the nation’s top young players that will ultimately expand the talent pool for the U.S. national teams that participate in Federation of International Lacrosse competitions.

“The chance to be inspired and coached by those that have worn the red white and blue is a significant opportunity for any young boy or girl out there,” said Nick Myers, head coach of the U.S. Men’s U19 team. “The game is growing and we’re looking to put a bigger net out there to find young players that want to be mentored and challenged. Learning from some of the best minds that are invested in the national teams is a tremendous opportunity for improvement.”

“This development program allows young players the opportunity to start to play at an elite level earlier, and to start to understand what it's like to represent your country,” said Kayla Treanor, a current U.S. national team member who has won gold at the U19 (2011) and senior team (2017) levels.  “It's a really difficult thing to make the national team, and I think the earlier you can start playing amongst other elite athletes, it will help the process.”

Earlier this month, US Lacrosse announced a partnership with the Premier Lacrosse League (PLL) and the Women’s Professional Lacrosse League (WPLL) for the first phase of the program. The PLL and WPLL, in conjunction with US Lacrosse, will hold regional trials around the country with instruction provided by current and former U.S. national team players and coaches. These one-day events will have a high focus on technical and tactical development.

There will be approximately 10-12 locations per gender for the regional trials with events running from April through July. Event sites will be announced in the coming weeks.

From the regional trials, the top players will be selected to advance to phase two of the process, a national combine in Maryland this coming August. Because the regional trials won’t hit every geographic area in the country, there will be an option for players unable to attend a regional trial to apply “virtually” to be selected for the national combine.

The national combine will be an intense three-day camp with athletes taken through elite level training in both individual and team skill development as well as sessions on nutrition, strength and conditioning, social media, recruiting, social emotional learning and leadership.

Following the combine, a total of 88 players will be named to USA Select teams at the U15 and U17 levels for boys’ and girls’ lacrosse.

Phase three of the NTDP is a showcase event that will feature the USA Select teams playing against international competition this fall. Players will be outfitted with sponsored gear and equipment and at this stage, all travel, lodging and meal expenses will be covered.

Any players from the 2019 USA Select teams that retain age-eligibility for 2020 will automatically bypass the 2020 regional trials and be invited to the national combine.

Stay tuned to for additional details on the NTDP over the next several weeks.