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Though lacrosse goalies aren’t ripping shots and laying checks all game, their shaft is still a crucial part of the stick.
Goalie shafts have to be light enough so the goalie can move them quickly, yet strong enough to hold up when hard shots deflect off them.
The problem is, there are tons of options available, making it hard to decide which to go with. To help make your search easier, I researched the market to find the best lacrosse goalie shafts available today.
Best Lacrosse Goalie Shafts
To find the best lacrosse shafts for goalies, I created a database of all available options on the market including as much info about each handle as I could including price, weight, material, and more.
I then read customer reviews and visited my local sporting goods to get more insight into how strong they were, how they felt, and what they looked like in person.
From there, I narrowed down my list to the 6 best that are included below.
Best Lacrosse Shafts for Goalies:
1) StringKing Metal 3 Pro Goalie
We start off with our favorite metal goalie shaft—the StringKing Metal 3 Pro.
There are two different weights based on your level of play. StringKing recommends that those 15 & under go with the 142 gram option while older players go with the 162 gram option.
Both options have great durability and are lighter than many other goalie shafts. They also have a nice concave shape that provides for a great grip on the shaft.
Besides the performance, my favorite thing about StringKing’s shafts are their clean, minimalistic appearance. They have small logos on one side of the shaft and subtle logos on the other side giving information about the shaft.
2) ECD Carbon Pro 2.0 Goalie
Drip Level: 5/5
- Material: Carbon fiber composite
- Length: 36″
- Weight: 5.64 oz
- Shape: Concave
- Grip/Finish: Raised texture top third of shaft
- Colors: White, Black
- Warranty: 6 months
If you are a goalie that prefers composite shafts, you can’t go wrong with the ECD Carbon Pro 2.0 Goalie shaft.
It is very light and should have no problem holding up even when deflecting the hardest of shots. If for some reason it does break, there is also a 6-month warranty allowing you to get a replacement.
The Carbon Pro 2.0 Goalie features a mid kick point and Flex8 technology to allow you to effortlessly make outlet passes. It also has a textured grip on the top third of the shaft to give you better control when trying to make saves.
3) StringKing Composite Pro Goalie
StringKing also offers a composite shaft line and the goalie version is our favorite.
The StringKing Composite Pro comes in the same weights as the Metal 3 Pro: 142 grams for those 14 & under and 162 grams for those over 14. You also have the choice between black and white, and it features similar minimalistic decals to the Metal 3 Pro shafts.
If you prefer a shaft with a smoother grip, then the Composite Pro is a great choice due to its smoother finish than many of the other options on this list.
4) Epoch Dragonfly Elite Goalie
Another carbon fiber shaft makes our list of the best goalie handles—this time the Epoch Dragonfly Elite, Epoch’s most advanced shaft.
The Dragonfly Elite Goalie has a concave shape with a slip/grip top coat giving you great control. It also features a subtle checkered design with “Dragonfly” in letting down the shaft.
This shaft has 2/10 stiffness according to Epoch’s scale. This helps you throw long outlet passes accurately and consistently. Epoch also used various advanced technologies when developing the shaft to keep it strong but super light weight.
5) STX Sc-Ti O Goalie
Drip Level: 4.6/5
- Material: Scandium/Titanium alloy
- Length: 40″
- Weight: 6.53 oz
- Shape: Octagonal
- Grip/Finish: 2 mil steel shot grip finish
- Colors: Platinum, Black
- Warranty: 6 months
STX’s Sc-Ti series is one of the longest-running and best advanced shaft lines available today. I played with an STX Sc-Ti Pro throughout high school and college, and I absolutely loved it.
The shafts are made out of a lightweight yet tough titanium/platinum alloy and have a great finish providing great grip on the shaft. The Sc-Ti O Goalie has an octagonal shape that STX has determined is the ideal shape for goalies.
If you prefer a metal shaft, you can’t go wrong with the STX Sc-Ti O Goalie.
6) Budget Option: STX Outlet
If you are looking for a cheaper, yet quality option, the STX Outlet is a classic worth considering. This is one of the first goalie-specific shafts I can ever remember seeing and there are a lot of great features to love.
First, it has a great textured grip and ergonomic teardrop shape to give you great control no matter how far or fast you have to move your stick around the cage. It’s also made of a strong, light material that won’t break or slow you down.
Just because the Outlet is typically cheaper than the other shafts on this list doesn’t mean it’s not a good option. If you decide on the Outlet, I bet you’ll be satisfied with your choice.
>> Read More: Cheap Lacrosse Goalie Shafts
How to Choose a Lacrosse Goalie Shaft
The first thing to consider when choosing a goalie shaft is what length you want.
As you see above, most goalie shafts are 36 or 40 inches. You can, however, use a shaft as short as 30 inches. This is why you’ll see some goalies using attack shafts.
Like many of the other things to consider when choosing a new shaft, there is no “best” length for goalie shafts. It comes down to your personal preference.
Some goalies may like a shorter, lighter shaft that they can move more quickly, while others may prefer the extra length to help with deflections or throwing outlet passes.
You don’t want a stick that is going to limit your ability to react to shots due to its weight. A few ounces can be the difference between getting your stick across the cage in time to make that doorstep save and turning around to pick the ball up out of the back of the net.
I recommend looking for a shaft under 7 ounces. You shouldn’t have to worry about shafts this light slowing you down. If you really prefer light shafts, you can find some options closer to 5 ounces or look into attack shafts if you prefer a 30-inch shaft.
>> Read More: Lightest Lacrosse Shafts & Heads
While it’s important to find a light shaft, you don’t want one that will break the first time a shot deflects off it or an attackman checks your stick.
That’s why you need to strike a balance between (light) weight and strength.
Though these two usually work against each other (heavier shafts = stronger), many top tier goalie shafts, such as those listed above, use advanced materials that are both strong and light.
The best way to gauge the strength of a shaft is to read/watch customer reviews and talk to other goalies to see how their experiences were with it.
The main types of lacrosse shafts are metal and composite/carbon fiber.
In my opinion, it doesn’t really matter which you go with. As long as you are comfortable with the shaft and like the way it feels, it shouldn’t make much of a difference.
Carbon fiber shafts tend to flex some whereas metal shafts are pretty stiff. This is more important for offensive players that shoot the ball, but it may be noticeable to some goalies when throwing hard outlet passes.
Metal shafts also form dings and dents more easily than composite shafts. Metal shafts are usually still usable in these cases, however, whereas carbon fiber shafts are unusable once they shatter.
Lacrosse goalie shafts come in a variety of shapes including traditional octagonal, concave, rigid, asymmetrical, and more.
Like the other things on this list, which is best for you depends on your personal preference.
It is worth testing out different shapes—especially as a goalie since having a good grip on the shaft is so important.
You want to choose a shape that feels comfortable when you’re wearing gloves and gives you enough leverage to quickly move your stick around the cage.
Another factor of how good your grip on your shaft is is the finish of it (what the outer layer feels like). You don’t want a shaft that is going to slip in your gloves, especially as you are trying to make saves.
Metal shafts typically have some sort of sandblasted finish that makes them a bit rougher. Composite shafts typically have a smoother finish but may have some additional texture to give goalies a better grip.
You can, of course, always use tape to give yourself a better grip too. It’s nice to have a shaft with a finish you like, though, so if your hands are out of their usual placement you still have control over your stick.
Last but not least, you always have to factor in your budget when deciding which shaft to buy.
While top tier shafts are definitely lighter and stronger than a lot of cheaper alternatives, more affordable handles aren’t likely to hold you back that much.
There are a lot of decent options in the $50 to $90 range.
If you have to choose a cheaper head or shaft, I recommend going with a cheaper shaft.
The best goalie lacrosse heads are lighter, stronger, and have more stringing holes and better scoops than cheap goalie heads.
With that being said, if you are trying to find a cheaper lacrosse shaft, I recommend looking at older models. Often these are discounted as new versions come out despite there being little difference from generation to generation.
FAQs About Goalie Shafts
1) Will XYZ head fit onto this shaft?
In the majority of cases, yes. Almost any head will fit onto any shaft, even if they are different brands.
You may have to drill a new hole in your shaft so the screw holes align, but that’s usually all you have to do.
2) Can I cut down a D-pole to a goalie shaft length?
Yes, as long as you cut your metal shaft down to the legal goalie length (30 to 40 inches), then it is perfectly legal to cut a d-pole down.
I bolded metal above because you definitely shouldn’t cut down a carbon fiber shaft. The shaft will splinter and will be unusable.
3) What is the standard goalie shaft length?
There is no single standard goalie shaft length. Though most are either 36 or 40 inches, they can legally range anywhere from 30 to 40 inches.