2015 Rule Changes Announced for Girls’ High School and Youth Lacrosse

From Press Release:

US Lacrosse today announced 13 rule revisions for women’s lacrosse, effective for the 2015 girls’ high school and youth lacrosse seasons. US Lacrosse writes the rules for high school girls’ lacrosse, and those rules are endorsed by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS). The rules also govern youth girls’ lacrosse, with some modifications also made by US Lacrosse.

The approved 2015 changes provide clarifications on rules governing equipment, uniforms, definition of fouls and the draw, among other areas. No major rule changes were enacted.

“We were very intentional in making only minor changes this year,” said Melissa Coyne, US Lacrosse women’s game director. “This allows for a period of adjustment to changes and revisions that have been put into place earlier. In addition to these changes, points of emphasis for officials in 2015 will include sportsmanship and curbing of rough and dangerous play.”

Perhaps the most noteworthy change was for the one rule that will not become a requirement until 2017 – that all games must be officiated by at least two US Lacrosse rated officials.

“Managing the safety of the game is a priority for US Lacrosse, and we felt that having a single official working a game at the high school level was no longer prudent,” Coyne said. “US Lacrosse is very thankful for the collaboration of the NFHS in endorsing this requirement for two officials. While we certainly hope that all jurisdictions will move toward the requirement as soon as possible, we felt that allowing some lead time would be a fair compromise for those in developing areas.”

A closer look at all the rule changes approved by the US Lacrosse Women’s Game Committee is below. Rule references are from the 2014 US Lacrosse Women’s Lacrosse Rule Book.

Rule 2, Section 5: The ball shall be yellow or bright orange in color and meet the current NOCSAE lacrosse ball standard at the time of manufacture.

Rule 2, Section 8: Mouthpieces shall cover the leading arch. This adjustment allows for a player whose leading arch is her bottom teeth to wear a mouth guard on the bottom.

Rule 2, Section 13: Legal player numbers are 0-99. A team may not have both 1 and 01, 2 and 02, etc. Those are considered the same number. Also, beginning in the 2017-18 school year, double-zero, 01, 02, 03, etc. will no longer be legal numbers.

Rule 3, Section 7: Cameras in goal cages may now be used with some restrictions.

Rule 3, Section 10: Beginning January 1, 2017, the game must be officiated by at least two US Lacrosse rated officials. Three officials are recommended.

Rule 5, Section 2: To clarify draw positioning, the wording was adjusted to state that opponents on the draw must each stand with one foot toeing the line and both feet must be on the same side.

Rule 5, Section 28: The number of stick check requests shall be two.

Rule 5, Section 28: When an illegal stick is found after a goal, the restart shall be at the center.

Rule 6, Section1m: Adjusted the definition of Forcing Through to eliminate the words “in such a way as to cause her own crosse to contact her body.”

Rule 6, Section 1s/w: Consolidation of “Detaining” and “Holding” foul.

Rule 7, Section 25: The goalkeeper may return to her goal circle if she has moved outside the goal circle during the slow whistle (flag raised) and has not fouled.

Rule 7, Section 35: When a suspended or ejected player (one who is no longer eligible to return to play for that game) reenters the game, it shall be Coach Misconduct.

Only one rule change was made specifically to the youth rules. Starting in 2015, there shall not be more than three coaches in the defined coaching area. This adjustment was made to assist with sideline management while still allowing for appropriate team supervision.

For more details and a listing of all 2015 US Lacrosse rule revisions for girls’ high school and youth play, please visit uslacrosse.org/womensrules.

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