Best Lacrosse Goalie Heads

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I was never much of a gear snob when I played goalie in college—except when it came to my head. It was the most important piece of equipment to me. I needed to trust that it would be consistent, reliable, and durable throughout the duration of the season.

But back then, my options for goalie heads were slim and I’d spend hours pulling on my strings trying to get my pocket just perfect because there were barely any sidewall holes to work with.

Luckily, there are now many more goalie heads designed for all ages and skillsets. This guide will go through the best goalie heads on the market to help you find the right fit.

Table of Contents

Best Lacrosse Goalie Heads

With all the options out there today, it’s crucial to take the time to find the right goalie head for your game.

We researched the top goalie heads on the market and broke down their specs to identify the best options for various situations.

6 Best Lacrosse Goalie Heads:

Drip Level: 5/5

Details

  • Weight: 11.6 oz
  • Throat Design: Ergonomic throat optimized for better grip
  • # Stringing Holes: Above-average
  • Year Released: 2017

The original STX Eclipse was one of the most popular goalie heads ever made. There’s a reason it was used by goalies of all levels for over 15 years.

The Eclipse 2 is an upgrade on this near-perfect design, and is now the most popular goalie head on the market. 

It is used by elite high school and college players as well as countless youth players across the nation.

The Eclipse 2 comes with a new throat that gives players a more comfortable and secure grip. STX also doubled the amount of stringing holes for increased stringing customization.

With its offset design, this head makes quick work of ground balls and throws crisp outlet passes.

The Eclipse 2 is also relatively lightweight but holds its stiffness well over time—even during those hot summer tournaments.

The Eclipse 2 is perfect for goalies of all levels and is our #1 recommended option.

Pros

Cons

2) StringKing Mark 2G

Drip Level: 4.8/5

Details

  • Weight: 10.9 oz
  • Throat Design: Standard (no special grip)
  • # Stringing Holes: Many
  • Year Released: 2020

StringKing entered the goalie head arena with the Mark 2G in early 2020—immediately vaulting it to the top of our goalie head rankings.

The Mark 2G is extremely light at under 11 oz but still features plenty of surface area and has good stiffness.

Like many other StringKing heads, the Mark 2G comes equipped with 42 sidewall holes creating limitless stringing options.

The head features a shortened low-profile throat. For players who prefer not to hold the throat of the head, this may be a great fit. 

Otherwise, goalies may find themselves using tape to make up for the lack of grip since it's shorter and doesn't have as much of an ergonomic design like the Eclipse 2 does.

This head is perfect for goalies who want to branch out from the mainstream goalie head brands and have complete pocket customization. The Mark 2G also comes with a 6-month warranty should it break.

Pros

Cons

3) Warrior Nemesis 3

Drip Level: 4.7/5

Details

  • Weight: 11.3 oz
  • Throat Design: Standard (no special grip)
  • # Stringing Holes: Above-average
  • Year Released: 2019

The Nemesis 2 was notorious for breaking on the sidewall. 

During my freshman year of college, I went through 3 of them which was extremely frustrating—especially considering how long it took me to get my preferred pocket for outlet passes.

Warrior seems to have addressed this issue by adding more struts along the sidewall of the Nemesis 3. 

All of my teammates and friends who use the Nemesis 3 haven't had any issues with them breaking.

Warrior also shaved off 1.1 ounces on the Nemesis 3 compared to its predecessor, making it one of the lightest goalie heads on the market.

Warrior has done a great job turning what used to be a bulky and brittle head into a lightweight and reliable option for goalies of all levels.

Pros

Cons

4) Brine Eraser 2

Drip Level: 4.4/5

Details

  • Weight: 11.3 oz
  • Throat Design: Standard length w/ some grip points
  • # Stringing Holes: Many
  • Year Released: 2014

The Brine Eraser 2 is a great all-around goalie head without any glaring weaknesses: it's pretty light, stays stiff over time, and it's easy to string a nice pocket in.

Even though it's relatively light compared to other goalie heads, it’s durable and stiff, so you shouldn’t have any issues with warping. 

The offset design is perfect for a smooth and consistent release when making outlet passes. 

In addition, it has numerous stringing holes so you can customize your pocket to meet your needs.

The throat of the Eraser 2 feels good in gloves with parts of plastic cut out to give you a better grip.

The Brine Eraser 2 has been a solid choice for players from youth ball to the pros for many years now and it remains one of the top options for goalies today.

Pros

Cons

5) Under Armour Command Goalie

Drip Level: 4.4/5

Details

  • Weight: 11.8 oz
  • Throat Design: Ergonomic design for improved grip
  • # Stringing Holes: Below-average
  • Year Released: 2019

Next up on our list of the best lacrosse goalie heads is the Under Armour Command Goalie.

At 11.8 ounces, the Command Goalie Head is heavier than most of its competitors but will retain durability throughout the harshest weather conditions in the off-season. This head was built to last.

One of the biggest downsides of the Command is that it features far fewer stringing holes than its competitors, possibly leading to difficulty stringing for some players. 

It does, however, come with Under Armour’s Glide+ Scoop Technology that makes snagging ground balls a breeze.

We recommend this head for middle school to high school level goalies who need a head that will last year-round

Pros

Cons

6) STX Shield

Drip Level: 4/5

Details

  • Weight: 12.6 oz
  • Throat Design: Ergonomic throat to improve grip & wrist mobility
  • # Stringing Holes: Average
  • Year Released: 2013

The STX Shield was designed to replace the original Eclipse as STX’s flagship goalie head before the Eclipse 2 came out. 

It features plenty of stringing holes, a comfortable throat, and a stiffer frame than its predecessor.

It features STX’s C-Channel technology to increase the stiffness and strength of the head, helping its durability and consistency. 

The Shield is, however, heavier than all of the other options on this list, possibly making it difficult to get the head to where it needs to go in time to make certain saves.

The STX Shield is a great choice for goalies who want an affordable, stiff goalie head and don’t mind the extra weight. 

It would also make for a great backup head if you don't mind using a different head than your gamer.

Pros

Cons

How to Choose a Goalie Head for Lacrosse

It can be hard to decide which goalie head is the best with so many available. Here are some of the most important things to consider when deciding:

1) Weight

Every ounce counts when you’re in the cage. Being able to move your head quickly can mean the difference between a goal and a save.

On the other end, ultralight heads can wear down and become too flexible much faster than the bulkier alternatives.

2) Stiffness

Nothing’s worse than thinking you’ve made a save only to realize the ball bent your head back and deflected into the goal.

If you notice you’re giving up too many deflections in practice, you might want to consider a stiffer head.

Keep in mind that a more rigid head will be harder to scoop up ground balls and press into the ground for low shots.

3) Throat Design

When you’re waiting for your opponent to wind up for a shot, you don’t want to worry about your hand placement on the stick.

Choose a head that’s comfortable and fits your preferred hand placement.

4) Stringing Holes

Lacrosse is unique in that players get to customize their equipment to their style of play. Advancements in stringing technology have allowed goalies to handle the ball like midfielders and make precise outlets.

You shouldn’t have to adapt your technique to the limits of your equipment. The more stringing holes you have, the more you can customize your stick to meet the needs of your game.

5) Customer Reviews

Before you buy a head, check out what other people are saying about it. Better yet, try it out!

Do your research and make sure you know what to expect before stringing it up. Some heads just aren’t a good match for your playing style.

Note: Don’t be afraid to try something new

It’s tempting to feel loyal to a certain brand or specific head. The original Eclipse was the only head I wanted to use in high school. However, goalie gear has come a long way over the years.

Don’t be afraid to branch out and try something new. There’s plenty of good options for any kind of player. You might be surprised to find something better.

How We Rate Goalie Lacrosse Heads

We take our ratings seriously and only recommend products that we would use ourselves.

To come up with our ratings for each product, we test the product ourselves whenever possible, review product specifications (weight, number of stringing holes, etc.), and read customer reviews/talk to lacrosse players we know that use the product.

When testing goalie heads, we bring them to a field and give them to our resident goalie head reviewer (and ex-college goalie) Dan. He tests the heads for making saves, outlet passes, carrying the ball, trapping and scooping balls, and checking.

If you ever have any feedback for any of the products listed on this page or have a recommended addition, please contact us and let us know!

Products to Consider Alongside Your Goalie Head

Here are some products you may want to consider alongside your new goalie head to help take your game to the next level.

  • StringKing Grizzly 2 Goalie Lacrosse Mesh Kit: Need to string up your new unstrung head? This mesh kit features some of the lightest goalie mesh available.
  • ECD Goalie Hero Mesh 12D: Just need a piece of mesh? ECD offers some of the most popular goalie mesh available.
  • Warrior Goalie Nutt Hutt Tool Box: Want to protect your gems but find a traditional cup uncomfortable? Then the Warrior Nutt Hutt is just what you need. It's more comfortable and protective than a normal cup helping you move around the cage better.
  • Brine Ventilator Goalie Pant: If you want even more protection. for your legs, these pants from Brine are the perfect solution. They feature pads around the hips and thighs, helping you worry less about getting hit so you can focus on the game.
  • STX Valor Lacrosse Goalie Shin Guards: Tired of bruises covering your shins after practice and games? These shin guards from STX can protect your legs without limiting your mobility between the pipes.

Other guides you may be interested in:

 

Photo source: Flickr

Carson

Carson is from Charlottesville, Virginia. After playing goalie his freshman year at Southern Virginia University, he transferred to BYU-Idaho to finish his Bachelors Degree.

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