Each team must keep at least four players, including the goalie, in its defensive half of the field and three in its offensive half. Three players (midfielders) may roam the entire field.
Generally, high school games are 48 minutes long, with 12 minute quarters. Each team is given a two minute break between the first and second quarters, and the third and fourth quarters. Halftime is ten minutes long.
Teams change sides between periods. Each team is permitted two timeouts each half. The team winning the coin toss chooses the end of the field it wants to defend first.
Men's lacrosse begins with a face-off. The ball is placed between the sticks of two squatting players at the center of the field. The official blows the whistle to begin play. Each face-off player tries to control the ball. The players in the wing areas can release; the other players must wait until one player has gained possession of the ball or the ball has crossed the goal line.
Center face-offs are also used after a goal and at the start of each quarter.
Players may run with the ball in the crosse, pass and catch the ball. Only the goalkeeper may touch the ball with his hands.
A player may gain possession of the ball by dislodging it from an opponent's crosse with a stick check, which includes the controlled poking and slapping of the stick and gloved hands of the player in possession of the ball.
Body checking is permitted if the opponent has the ball. However, Boys U11 (3rd/4th grade) is a NON-CONTACT game. All contact must occur from the front or side, above the waist and below the shoulders. An opponent's crosse may also be stick checked if it is within five yards of a loose ball or ball in the air.
If the ball or a player in possession of the ball goes out of bounds, the other team is awarded possession of the ball. If the ball goes out of bounds after an unsuccessful shot on goal, the player nearest to the ball when and where it goes out of bounds is awarded possession.
An attacking player cannot enter the crease around the goal, but may reach in with his stick to scoop a loose ball.
MBYLL Rules of Play for U15, U13 & U11 Age Levels
1. All Age Levels: Games will be played in four (4) - (10) minute start/stop quarters for the U15, U13 and U11
age groups. Game time EXCEPTION - 15 minute running time quarters could be an option, however
ONLY IF BOTH head coaches agree before the start of the game. (MBYLL) The Home Town/Program
team is encouraged to have a dedicated person as time keeper/scorekeeper for game who is stationed
at midfield between both team benches.
2. All Age Levels: There will be two timeouts per half per team. (USLYC)
3. All Age Levels: Overtime will be played upon unanimous agreement of both coaches & referee, and will only
be played as one (4) minute sudden-death period. (MBYLL)
4. All Age Levels: All helmets must be NOCSAE approved lacrosse helmets. Any offending helmet must be
removed from play, and the referee has the final say on all helmets. (MBYLL/USLYC)
5. All Age Levels: If any team gains a FIVE-goal lead; the trailing team MUST receive the ball at midfield
without a face off. Face offs resume when the margin returns to four goals or less. (MBYLL)
6. All Age Levels: If a team acquires a ten goal advantage in the second half of a game, the coaches and
referee will meet, in the spirit of the MBYLL, to discuss adjustments to play. (MBYLL)
7. All Age Levels: Poke checks will be permitted with proper intent of contact of opposing stick and/or gloves.
8. All Age Levels: The home team will confirm a MBYLL certified referee has been scheduled for all MBYLL
games. If a scheduled referee fails to show, the coaches will both agree on how to proceed or game
will be rescheduled if possible. Coaches should consider the potential liability issues of proceeding to
play a game without a MBYLL certified official. Towns are also encouraged to enlist parents or
high-school age students to become certified as a MBYLL Associate Official (AO) by attending a
pre-season MBYLL AO Certification Clinic.
9. All Age Levels: NO take out checks at any age level. Example: Any hit with or without possession that has
the intent--in the Ref Officials opinion--of injuring or putting the opponent on the ground. (USLYC) On
1st offense player will be called for an unsportsmanlike personal foul with an automatic unreleasable 1,
2 or 3 minutes time-serving penalty (Ref Officials descretion). If same player is called for a 2nd
offense, player is automatically ejected from game and will stay on the sideline for the remainder of
the game. (MBYLL rule)
10. All Age Levels: Uniforms must conform to NCAA standard jerseys with 6" numbers in front and 8" numbers
in back. Programs with existing non-compliant jerseys should make the necessary changes at the next
11. All Age Levels: All other rules & guidelines not otherwise noted here, will be played according to USLYC
rules as listed in the National Federation of State High School Associates Rule Book.
SPECIFICS BY LEVEL
U15 Age Level specifically
1. Two (2) Referee Officials will be assigned to officiate all MBYLL U15 games. It is recommended
that one of the two Ref's come from the MBYLL Associate Official's program, however if an AO is not available then two (2) MBYLL EMLOA Referee's can be assigned. EXCEPTION: if only one MBYLL EMOLA Referee shows up or if no MBYLL AO is available, coaches can agree to play game with only one MBYLL EMLOA Referee. (MBYLL rule)
2. The 2-minute stalling rule will only apply to U15 teams. Exception: The 2 minute rule will be used in
the fourth quarter for the U15 age group. The offensive team in possession must keep the ball in the offensive box during the last two minutes of the game if they are ahead of the opponent. (MBYLL & USYLC rule)
3. U15 teams will apply the 20 second count to clear the ball over the half field line and will apply the
10 second count to keep the ball in the offensive box. This rule would be suspended if one team had a 5 or more goal lead at any point in the game. It would be reinstated if the lead goes back under 5 goals. (MBYLL & USYLC rule)
4. Three long sticks, each measuring up to 72" (including stick head & shaft), are permitted on the
field at any one time (USLYC rules).
U13 Age Level specifically
1. Three long sticks, each measuring up to 60" (including stick head & shaft), are permitted on the
field at any one time during MBYLL games. (MBYLL rule)
2. Substitutions are allowed on all out of bounds (sideline/ end line) for the all U13 games. (MBYLL)
U11 & U9 Age Level specifically
1. NO body checking at the U11age level per the US Lacrosse Youth Council Rules for U11 play.
U11 players are expected to play the ball and NOT the man when the ball is loose. When defending a player in possession with the ball, the U11 & U9 defender should use no more than equal pressure to prevent progress. (USLYC rule)
2. One coach from each team is allowed and encouraged to be on the field at all times during U11
(& U9) games. The purpose is to enable coaches to provide positive instruction to their players without having to yell from the sidelines. (MBYLL rule)
3. Substitutions will be allowed on all out of bounds (sideline/ end line) for the all U11 games.
4. Long sticks are NOT permitted at U11 or U9. (MBYLL rule)