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March 15, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Denver's Jamie Faus

Matt Kinnear
  (2:01 PM)

Welcome to another edition of the Inside Lacrosse/ESPN chat. This week we have Denver goalie Jamie Faus answering questions. Faus has a .516 save percentage and an 8.24 goals against average for the Pioneers, who play the No. 7 Irish in a game televised on ESPNU Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (11 a.m. MT).

Matt Kinnear
  (2:02 PM)

Here we go...

Big Lax Fan (Wish I was in Denver!)

Great start to your season Jamie -- we are so excited to follow you and your team. 2 questions for you please. Do you have any pre-game rituals ? What are your favourite pre-game foods ?Looking forward to another terrific Pioneer Season !!

Jamie Faus
  (2:04 PM)

Yes, I do have a few pre-game rituals. I usually get to the locker room about 2 hours before the game. I Always get a gatorade and 4 cliff bars that are provided for us. I then head to the training room and hop into a hot whirlpool for about five minutes. That actually started last year when I had some lower back problems as a way to loosen up my back. Don't have any lower back problems this year, but i guess it just stuck as something i'm superstitious about. I always get a good stretch in before the game as well. I'll save you a good amount of reading and just say there are a lot of other small quirky things built into those 2 hours leading up to the game. As for a pre-game food, I always try and get some good carbs the night before. We also have a pregame breakfast, but i never really stick to one specific food.

Lawrence (New York)

Being from the East Coast, how do you like Denver and the DU campus?

Jamie Faus
  (2:07 PM)

I love it. I lived out west (Santa Fe, New Mexico) for a year when I was younger, so I am somewhat familiar with the west. When I came out for a visit in high school, I kind of fell in love with the Denver area and the campus is amazing. Not many kids in Division one lacrosse have a room in which they can wake up evreyone morning and see the Rocky Mountains. It also doesnt hurt to have over 300 sunny day's a year.

Remy Borg (Los Angeles California )

How do you string your heads? And what type of mesh and strings do you use?

Jamie Faus
  (2:10 PM)

I use the Warrior Nemisis. To string it I just use the warrior hard mesh stringing kit. It's kind of hard to explain how i string it. Our coach Trevor Tierney actually designed the head, so he knows how its supposed to be strung, and showed me how it's done. The top is done as any other goalie head is strung. The side wall is very tight at the top causing the top half of the mesh to be very tight, this allows for a nice channel in the mesh to develop as you loosen the sidewall towards the bottom of the stick.

mike (maryland)

As a goalie what do you do to maintain consistancy?

Jamie Faus
  (2:12 PM)

great question. During the season, you see a lot of shots in practice. I take my warmups at the beginning of practice to work on fundamentals, and work with the coaches to fix specific problems i may need to fix, or improve on. My week starts off fairly light, as I take less shots on monday's and build up to more reps in net throughout the week. Since we have such a long pre-season and quite a long season, you are going to find your rhythm in seeing the ball fairly quickly. I would say more so then anything, staying mentally fresh, focused and relaxed are really the keys to consistency.

Crawford McCarthy (Orange County)

As a former Salisbury Knight, I loved playing under coach Bobby Wynne, how did his coaching and your time at Salisbury help to make you the player you were heading into the pioneer program?

Jamie Faus
  (2:23 PM)

Love hearing from a fellow Sarum Brother. Coach Wynne is one of my favorite people in the world, and as you know an unbelievable coach. Coach Wynne really helped prepare me for the college level in a few ways. One being that his practice are very high paced, intense and very competitive. Practice like this really helped me prepare for the high intensity, pace and level of competition in practice at the college level. Coach Wynne also does a great job at preparing his team for games, and how he structures his practices leading up to the games, best preparing his players for the opponent. Having scouts on other teams and understanding game plans and putting them in throughout the week, helped to prepare me for a game week at the college level as well. Most of all, Coach Wynne breeds a competitive spirit and love of hard work and competition amongst his players. One of my favorite quotes of Coach Wynn is, "The distance between the pent-house and the out-house is only so far"

Tony (Denver)

I heard you were a gym rat is that true and how does lifting help you protect the cage

Jamie Faus
  (2:30 PM)

haha. During the off-season I do put my hours in at the gym. I live at the Hotchkiss School in CT where my parents teach, and have worked with the strength and conditioning coach there (Mark Knapp) for a few years. He's quite an incredible mind. I have worked on building my strength and explosiveness with Mark, all while trying to maintain the same level of flexibility and quickness. I think that training the correct way, is helpful to optimize your physical abilities. I see my work with Mark, paying off more out of the cage, say on ground balls around the net and being able to get out of my goal quickly to get them, rather then it has in saving the ball.

James (Philadelphia)

As a fellow goalie looking for a tip, is there anything you do to keep yourself calm during a long possession by the other team? It seems very easy to become anxious and jumpy.

Jamie Faus
  (2:36 PM)

Great question, and something I do struggle with at times. I have found that making sure I am breathing the same way I would if the ball were at the other end of the field has been key in staying focused. For me this means talking a little less to the defense, being more of a conversation starter and asking question, like "whose hot", "whose the 2 slide" rather then constantly telling the defense, who is hot, who is the two, as well as where the ball is and what defense we are in. By talking less, I am breathing more and staying relaxed, allowing me to keep my focus.

Tony (Denver)

What do you find most satisfying about your position and what is the biggest save you've ever made?

Jamie Faus
  (2:45 PM)

I find the adrenalin and pressure of the position to be the most satisfying, I guess pretty addictive actually. I also love the bond that you make as a defense, with the guys in front of me. There's nothing better then having a great game as a defensive unit and having great chemistry back there. I don't remember any one save as being my biggest. But whenever a goalie is able to make a big stop and get the ball out quickly in transition, turning into a goal at the other end is huge. Whether that save stopped a run by the other team, or the save was the end result of the other teams long possession. Any time a goalie is able to contribute to the momentum of his team in a positive way, or halt the momentum of the opposing team is huge. The faceoff guys and goalies, are really catalyst's in the game.

Jason (Denver)

My son is a 12 year old, playing goalie for the 2nd year. What were the keys to your success at a young age and what advice would you give him. Good luck this season.

Jamie Faus
  (2:50 PM)

Thank you. I played a lot of wall ball when I was younger, which helped in building my stick skills. It is just as important to be able to clear the ball as a goalie as it is to save the ball. I also spent a lot of time out on the field with my dad as he was and assistant coach for the varsity team at Hotchkiss. I was fortunate enough to watch a lot of great goalies in the New England West 1 league, and really study and watch a former Hotchkiss goalie Miles Kass, who went on to have a great career at Georgetown. Being able to watch Miles every day helped me gain an understanding for the position and how the best are succesful.

Matt (Long island)

What was the hardest part about making the jump to college lacrosse and what is one thing you wished you had worked on more in high school to prepare you for d1 lacrosse

Jamie Faus
  (2:54 PM)

The first practice I had here at Denver, I felt like a fish out of water. The pace at which the college level is played, is far faster. Not only are shots obviously faster, but guys move the ball much more quickly, run faster, and compete harder. It's hard to have worked on in high school, but the lifestyle of a division one athlete in any sport is quite time consuming. Being able to balance your academics, athletics, and social life can be hard to get used to.

Tony (Denver)

What is your major and what do you want to do once you graduate, besides dominate the MLL.

Jamie Faus
  (3:03 PM)

haha playing in the MLL would be a dream and incredibly fun, but i don't know if that's realistic. I am majoring in History, although i'm not sure if being a Historian or History teacher is what I want after college. I would love to stay involved with athletics, preferably at the professional level. I would love to work in management for an MLB or NFL franchise someday. Sports agency also interests me, as I had a wonderful opportunity this past winter to intern for ProStar Sports Agency, a football specific agency out here in Denver this past winter.

Jamie Faus
  (3:03 PM)

haha playing in the MLL would be a dream and incredibly fun, but i don't know if that's realistic. I am majoring in History, although i'm not sure if being a Historian or History teacher is what I want after college. I would love to stay involved with athletics, preferably at the professional level. I would love to work in management for an MLB or NFL franchise someday. Sports agency also interests me, as I had a wonderful opportunity this past winter to intern for ProStar Sports Agency, a football specific agency out here in Denver this past winter.

Matt Kinnear
  (3:05 PM)

And the last question, coming from me...What are your predictions for the highly-touted matchup against Notre Dame this weekend?

Jamie Faus
  (3:10 PM)

Notre Dame is a great team, that is off to a very strong start this year. They have D1's best goalie in John Kemp and I believe their defense is giving up on average 4 goals a game, or something crazy like that. It will be an incredible battle between our offense and there defense, I'm expecting an incredibly intense 60 minutes of lacrosse between our two teams. Playing the Fighting Irish at their place on Saint Patrick's Day, doesn't get much more fun then that! It's going to be a battle

Matt Kinnear
  (3:11 PM)

Thanks, Jamie for participating, and thank you fans for asking questions. Catch this game on ESPNU at 11 a.m. MT, 1 p.m. ET this Sunday.