US Lacrosse Parent Handbook Youth Boys Introduction
Honor the game
Lacrosse has benefited from rapid growth in recent years. More and more people every day are learning to play America’s oldest – and fastest growing – sport. Lacrosse is about having fun and learning a sport. As parents, part of your role is to make sure that your child is enjoying his lacrosse experience. Be positive about your child’s participation. Encourage. Support. Volunteer. Remind your child, AND yourself, that winning is not everything. You and your child will participate in many games over the years and the friendships and great experiences will certainly outweigh the win/loss record in your child’s memory.
Guiding Principles for Boys’ Youth Lacrosse:
Respect your coaches, teammates, opponents, officials and the fans
Compete with heart, honor and hustle
Honor the traditions of the game and respect the ancestors of the sport
Have fun, be passionate and adhere to the spirit of the game both on and off the field
Boys’ lacrosse is a contact game played by 10 players. The object of the game is to shoot the ball into the opponent’s goal and to keep the other team from scoring. The team scoring the most goals wins.
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. Attackmen and defenders, including the goalie, can cross midfield, but another player that would normally be able to cross the line has to stay behind the line to ensure that the team has the proper number of players on each side.
Boys’ 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 run after the ball when the whistle sounds. The other players must wait until one player has gained possession of the ball, or the ball has crossed into the offensive zone, before they can release. Face-offs are also used at the start of each quarter
and after a goal is scored. Many youth leagues award the ball to the losing team after a goal instead of facing off if there is a wide goal differential to ensure a more competitive experience.
Field players must use their crosses to pass, catch and run with 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, the controlled poking and slapping of the stick and gloved hands of the player with the ball.