Founded in 1996, Ashland Youth Lacrosse fields teams at a variety of age groups from K to 8th grade for both boys and girls in the Town of Ashland, MA.

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Boys Rules

USLacrosse Rules Link: http://www.uslacrosse.org/rules/boys-rules.aspx


MBYLL and Ashland Youth Lacrosse follow the following rules:

  • Level 1/2 (U9) will follow USL 8u rules (and please remember our policy is that kindergartners CAN play in Level 1/2 if the parents and program feel the athlete is mature enough)
  • Level 3/4 (U11) will follow USL 10u rules
  • Level 5/6 (U13) will follow USL 12u rules
  • Level 7/8 (U15) will follow USL 14u rules
 
2015 Rules for Boys Youth Lacrosse

The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) 2015 Boys Lacrosse Rules Book shall govern US Lacrosse boys’ youth play, except as amended below. The US Lacrosse Men’s Game Committee has approved these exceptions to the NFHS Rules. Send questions about the US Lacrosse Rules for Boys Youth Lacrosse to the US Lacrosse Men’s Game Rules Subcommittee at boysyouthrules@uslacrosse.org. Please do not contact NFHS about the following rules.
 
Overarching Principle
The game is to be played with emphasis on the proper development of individual stick skills, team play, player safety, and sportsmanship.

2015 Points of Emphasis
US Lacrosse endorses the points of emphasis in the 2015 NFHS Boys Lacrosse Rules, and adds the following points of emphasis for youth play:

VIOLENT COLLISIONS – Some body contact is permitted at all levels of boys’ youth lacrosse, with progressively more age-appropriate contact permitted as players become more physically mature and learn proper checking techniques. However, sports medicine research indicates that the severity of certain injuries may be reduced if a player can anticipate and prepare himself for an oncoming hit, and other sports medicine research indicates that peripheral vision may not be fully developed in many boys before approximately age fifteen.

Therefore, there is no justification for deliberate and violent collision by any player at any youth level, especially intentional player-to-player collisions with defenseless players (so-called “blind side” and “buddy-pass” checks), checks involving the head and/or neck, and excessive body-checks (“take-out checks”).

The 2015 NFHS Rules and US Lacrosse Boys Youth Rules more clearly define such violent collisions and in many cases increase the severity of the penalties that prohibit them. All participants must work together to reduce or eliminate such violent collisions from the game.

Therefore, US Lacrosse urges that:
  • officials apply these violent collision rules and utilize the more severe penalty options, and reminds them that body-checks that might be acceptable in high school play may be excessive in youth lacrosse, and should be penalized accordingly.
  • coaches teach players to avoid delivering excessive or illegal checks, and support the officials when they penalize such checks.
SPORTSMANSHIP – Players, coaches, and spectators should exhibit the highest level of sportsmanship at all times. Unsportsmanlike conduct by coaches and/or players and/or spectators degrades the experience of youth players and erodes the integrity and appeal of the sport. Therefore, unsportsmanlike conduct will not be tolerated. Obscenities need not be used in order for language to draw a penalty. Tone, intent, and body language can all contribute to unsportsmanlike conduct.

US Lacrosse expects officials to enforce the Unsportsmanlike Conduct rules without hesitation.

Coaches must model appropriate sportsmanlike behavior and promote good sportsmanship among players and anybody associated with the team, including spectators. In particular, coaches must support officials in maintaining an environment of civility and sportsmanship.

Coaches and officials should be partners in providing the best possible lacrosse experience for youth players. Many people become officials because they value the game or want to support youth sports. However, nobody likes to be yelled at, and officials, especially younger and less experienced officials, may find the experience so unpleasant that they stop officiating. Lack of competent officials is one of the biggest barriers to responsible growth of the game.

US Lacrosse encourages leagues and local programs to utilize the Sideline Manager and Sportsmanship Card program, details of which can be found at www.uslacrosse.org under “Programs & Grants” in the drop-down menu from the “Resources” tab on the homepage. US Lacrosse initiated the Sideline Manager and Sportsmanship Card program to invest the lacrosse community with responsibility for making good sportsmanship the rule, ratherthan the exception, in the sport of lacrosse. When used in conjunction with the rules, the Sportsmanship Card procedures serve as an effective deterrent to abusive behaviors.

Age and Eligibility Guidelines
US Lacrosse establishes eligibility guidelines in order to promote the game of lacrosse among the youth of America in a safe and sportsmanlike environment. To best achieve this goal, US Lacrosse believes that leagues, associations, and other organizers of youth lacrosse should seek to provide playing opportunities that, as much as possible, establish a "level playing field" among players of similar age, size, and ability.

Age and Eligibility Guidelines are not considered “game-day rules” and are not enforced as game-day rules by officials. Exceptions to age divisions cannot be made on game day and all coaches must adhere to classifications as determined by their league or association.

League and Association Play. Leagues and associations should organize competition by age, and consider physical, cognitive, and emotional maturity when grouping players. For leagues or associations in which some local programs choose to organize their teams by grade, those teams should play in the age division determined by the oldest player on their roster. Teams organized by single birth year or single grade are suggested, but if a league needs to group two years/grades together it should strive to limit the maximum age difference between players in a youth game to no more than twenty-four (24) months.

Players who are participating in any high-school level program such as a high school freshman, JV-B, junior varsity, varsity or club team should not be eligible for U15 competition in the same season. This means that a player who is age-eligible for U15 but plays on a high school level team should not concurrently play on a youth league U15 team. At other times of the year this player may be U15 eligible; for example, for summer ball or fall ball play, depending on the guidelines of the sponsoring league or organization.

The following age groupings are determined as of the August 31st preceding competition.
NOTE: Age group references used in this section are in common usage but should not be understood literally. The U15 (read: “Under 15”) grouping means that, if a player is 14 years old on the cutoff date, he may participate in U15 competition as a 15-year old.

U15:
All players must be 14 years old or younger on the August 31st preceding competition. It is recommended that when multiple teams exist within a program, the program should consider physical size, skill, and maturity when organizing teams.
U13:
All players must be 12 years old or younger on the August 31st preceding competition. It is recommended that when multiple teams exist within a program, the program should consider physical size, skill, and maturity when organizing teams.
U11:
All players must be 10 years old or younger on the August 31st preceding competition. It is recommended that when multiple teams exist within a program, the program should consider physical size, skill, and maturity when organizing teams.
U9:
All players must be 8 years old or younger on the August 31st preceding competition. It is recommended that when multiple teams exist within a program, teams should consider physical size, skill, and maturity.
 
Format of the following Section: Existing NFHS Rule and Section reference, followed by the corresponding US Lacrosse Boys Youth Rule section modification. All divisions will follow NFHS Boys Lacrosse Rules with the following modifications:

Rule 1 — The Game, Field & Equipment

The Game - Number of Players
RULE 1 SECTION 1.

Boys youth lacrosse is played by two teams with 10 players per side on the field. However, if a governing league or association deems it necessary or desirable, for example, due to the number of available players or skill level, or if in non-league contests both coaches agree, games can be played with reduced numbers (e.g. 7 per side) on the field. (NOTE: For youth lacrosse, the NFHS RULE 2 SECTION 1 ARTICLE 3 prohibition against playing with fewer than 7 on-field players applies only to standard 10 players per side play.)

US Lacrosse recommends reduced numbers/reduced size field play for U9 and younger players because it gives each player more “touches” and is more proportionate to their size, speed, and endurance. US Lacrosse guidelines for reduced numbers/reduced field boys lacrosse can be found at www.uslacrosse.org under Rules in the drop-down menu from the “Resources” tab on the homepage.

The Field – Dimensions
RULE 1 SECTION 2.

Play on regulation size field is preferred; however, the coaches and officials may agree to play on any size field available. If a game is played with reduced numbers (e.g. 7 per side) it is recommended that field size be reduced as well.
 
The Field – Spectator Restrictions
RULE 1 SECTION 2, ARTICLE 11 a, b & c

a. Spectators and media, including photographers, are not allowed behind the end lines except in stadium structures where permanent seats exist which are also protected by a fence or netting.
b. Spectators must be on the side of the field opposite the table and bench areas or in permanent stands separated from the bench area by a barrier and/or a buffer distance such as a track.
c. Where possible, limit lines will be used. Spectators and media, including photographers, are not allowed within the limit lines at any time during a contest.
If the field is laid out in a manner that does not allow spectators and media to be located as prescribed by paragraphs a, b and c of this rule, as modified here, the game official can waive one or more of these requirements.

The Ball
RULE 1 SECTION 5

The ball shall be white, yellow, orange, or lime green and meet NOCSAE lacrosse ball standard. White balls shall be used unless both coaches agree prior to or during the game to use a yellow, orange, or lime green ball.
Game balls shall be supplied by the home team. NOTE: All game balls must include labeling which states: “Meets NOCSAE Standard”.

Crosse/Stick Dimensions
RULE 1 SECTION 6

US Lacrosse recommends that coaches assess players’ size, strength, and skill in determining proper long crosse length for defense players, within NFHS rules. US Lacrosse further recommends that a long crosse should not be taller than the player at any youth level. Crosse dimensions will conform to NFHS or NCAA requirements, with the following modifications:
U11
The length of the crosse for field players shall be 37 to 42 inches or 47 to 54 (“long crosse” for purposes of NFHS Rule 2 SECTION 1 ARTICLE 2). Many coaches find that the use of a 37 to 42 inch crosse is best for players’ defensive development in the U11 Division.
U9
The length of all crosses for all field players shall be 37 to 42 inches.
 
Player Equipment
RULE 1 SECTION 9

Equipment shall conform to NFHS requirements, including gloves, arm pads, shoulder pads, mouth piece, shoes, and NOCSAE-approved helmets, which must be properly fitted and worn, with the following modifications:
  • All goalkeepers are required to wear arm pads. NOTE: Many coaches believe youth level goalkeepers benefit from wearing shin, knee, and thigh pads. Such pads are authorized for youth play, so long as they do not significantly increase the size of the limb protected (e.g., no ice hockey, field hockey, or box lacrosse goalie pads).
  • A protective cup is required for all players. NOTE: The officials are not required to inspect the wearing of a protective cup, and may rely on the coach’s certification and/or a player’s statement regarding satisfaction of this requirement.
  • Rib pads are recommended for all players.
  • Game Jerseys: The provisions of RULE 1, SECTION 9, ARTICLE 1.g need not be strictly enforced at the youth level. A team’s game jerseys should have numbers centered on the front and back of sufficient size to be clearly visible by game officials anywhere on the field and opposing teams’ jerseys should have contrasting dominant colors. Home teams are responsible for contrasting jersey colors and will provide and wear contrasting color numbered pinnies or pinnies that allow jersey numbers to be clearly seen, if needed. The jersey, pinnie, or an under jersey should completely cover the shoulder pads, which will help hold them in place.
  • The color provisions of RULE 1, SECTION 9, ARTICLES 1 and 2 for helmets, uniform shorts, under-jerseys, compression shorts, and sweatpants need not be strictly enforced at the youth level.

Prohibited Equipment and Related Items
RULE 1 SECTION 10 ARTICLE 1

For youth play, modify NFHS RULE 1 SECTION 10 ARTICLE 1.h to prohibit: Eye shade (grease or non-glare strips or stickers) or other markings that include words, numbers, logos, or other symbols.

Game Administration – Sideline Managers
RULE 1 SECTION 12

Add to Rule 1 Section 12: Each team should provide a designated Sideline Manager (one adult per team, on site, per game-day contest) to help encourage, maintain, and manage the sportsmanlike behavior of spectators and fans and assist the coaches and officials in keeping spectators and media an appropriate distance from the sideline. If used, it is the responsibility of each team administration to ensure that the Sideline Manager is present and in place to perform his/her duties; however, this is not a game day rule to be enforced by the officials.

Rule 2 — Game Personnel

Coaches
RULE 2 SECTION 3

At the U9 or younger level, if the coaches from both teams agree, one coach per team may be allowed on the field during play to provide instruction during the game. Teams are encouraged to take advantage of this teaching opportunity but this presence does not authorize the coach on the field to address the game officials or, unlessagreed to by the other team’s coach, members of the opposing team. Coaches are encouraged to stay wider than the face off wing lines extended to the end line and not get in the way of players or officials.


Rule 3 — Time Factors

Length of Game
RULE 3 SECTION 1

At all levels, all timing and overtime rules must be determined prior to the start of game, preferably by the governing league or association. If a league/association mandates, or if in non-league contests both coaches agree, shorter time periods, stop time, or running time may be used. If running time is to be used, the clock will stop for all timeouts.

NOTE: US Lacrosse strongly discourages the use of a “braveheart” competition - or any other means which requires, for example, one or a few players to compete against another such individual or group - to determine the winner of a game. Such “braveheart” competitions encourage reliance on, and put potentially excessive physical and emotional pressure on, the most physically precocious or skilled children and contradict the concepts of team play we seek to instill.

U15
Games will consist of four 10-minute stop-time quarters. In the event of a tie, 4-minute sudden-victory overtime periods will be played until a winner is determined (provided time permits and coaches and officials are in agreement). In sudden victory overtime, each team is entitled to one timeout per period.
U13
Games will consist of four 10-minute stop-time quarters. In the event of a tie, up to two 4-minute sudden-victory overtime periods will be played. In sudden victory overtime, each team is entitled to one timeout per period.
In the event of a tie at the end of the two regulation overtime time periods the game should end as a tie. If league or tournament play requires that a winner be determined, overtime should be played in accordance with U15 rules.
U11
Games will consist of four 8-minute stop-time quarters. If running time is to be used, 12-minute running time quarters are recommended.
In the event of a tie at the end of regulation time the game should end as a tie. If league or tournament play requires that a winner be determined, overtime should be played in accordance with U15 rules.
U9
Games will consist of four 12-minute running-time quarters (clock stops only for a team timeout, an official’s timeout, or an injury timeout). If stop time is to be used, 8-minute stop-time quarters are recommended.
In the event of a tie at the end of regulation time the game should end as a tie. If league or tournament play requires that a winner be determined, overtime should be played in accordance with U15 rules.

Final Two Minutes of Regulation Play
RULE 3 SECTION 3

U15 and U13
The Final Two Minute stalling rule shall be ENFORCED for these Divisions

U11 and U9
The Final Two Minute stalling rule shall be WAIVED for these Divisions. (This rule also modifies “Final Two Minute” provisions of RULE 4, SECTION 34.C.1)

Rule 4 — Play of the Game

Lineup
RULE 4 SECTION 2

Before the lineup, US Lacrosse strongly encourages game officials to meet with both teams, separately or together, near the team areas to explain any special ground rules, emphasize safety and fair play, and remind players that they must be properly equipped with mouthpieces in place at all times on the playing field.

Alternatively, a league, association, or other governing authority may mandate that when the game officials call for the lineup before the opening faceoff, the head coaches will send all of their players (not just the starters, as has been traditional) to the center of the field. At this time the game officials will convey the equipment, safety, and fair play information, in addition to explaining any special ground rules as required under NFHS Rule 4-2.

Facing Off
RULE 4 SECTION 3

U15 and U13
All NFHS face off rules will be followed.
U11 and U9
At any point during a game when there is a six-goal lead, the team that is behind will be given the ball at the midfield line in lieu of a face-off as long as the six-goal lead is maintained, unless waived by the coach of the trailing team.

Advancing the Ball
RULE 4 SECTIONS 14 & 15

U15 and U13
The defensive 20-second count will be used.
The offensive 10-second count will be used.
U11 and U9
The defensive 20-second count WILL NOT be used.
The offensive 10-second count WILL NOT be used.

Substitution Procedures
RULE 4 SECTION 22 ARTICLE 2

US Lacrosse Youth Rules NOTE—U9 & U11 Horn Substitution Option: For U9 and/or U11 play, Leagues may authorize substitutions when play has been suspended by the officials after the ball has gone out of bounds on the sidelines. For such substitutions, the timer shall sound a horn upon the request of a coach indicating to the officials that a substitution is desired. All other rules with respect to substitutions during suspension of play shall apply.

Official’s Time-Outs
RULE 4 SECTION 25 ARTICLE 6

If the player in possession of the ball loses any piece of required equipment the official should stop play immediately regardless of proximity of opposing players.

Team Time-Outs
RULE 4 SECTION 26

Two (2) team timeouts - of a maximum duration of two minutes each - are permitted per team per half, unless league or association rules specify otherwise. Whenever circumstances allow, leagues and organizers should permit no fewer than two team timeouts per half. Many leagues permit teams three or more team time-outs per half to enhance instruction, safety, and opportunities for substitution.