Official League Rules (2011)
Proposed Rules ONLY – These have not been ratified by the League
The St. Louis Men’s Lacrosse League (STLMLL) will adhere to the published NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Rule Book, with the following exceptions:
Core Game Rules
Home Team Responsibilities – The home team shall be responsible for both providing for and paying the official, securing the field, ensuring that the field is properly lined, providing regulation goals, providing at least six balls on each end line, and promptly reporting the final score to the League. The home team shall also provide accurate directions to the field location.
Officials – There shall be one (1) official for all regular season games. The home team shall be responsible for providing for and paying the officials. There shall be at least two (2) neutral officials for the Championship Game. The League shall provide for and pay for officials for the Championship Game.
All STLMLL officials must be certified in MO, with a minimum level of experience with varsity high school games and preferably those officials who are regularly assigned elite level high school and/or NCAA games.
The home team has the prerogative to secure officials, but all teams are strongly encouraged to utilize Bob Schulte as the primary assignor for officials.
The pricing structure for a regular season STLMLL game (15 minute running time quarters) is $45 per official per game.
Pre-Game Conference – There shall be a pre-game conference between team captains and officials to confirm the rules regarding the length and timing of quarters, breaks between quarters and halftime, 30 second clear rule, get it in and keep it in rule, number and duration of timeouts, stop time in last two minutes of each half and maximum number of long poles permitted. “In Home” player designations shall also be declared during the pre-game conference to serve penalties (short of expulsion) for their respective goalies. The home team representative shall distribute a copy of the “one-pager” Rules Summary to the officials at the pre-game conference. Each team rep should keep a hard copy of the complete STLMLL rules with their gear for easy reference during a game.
Coin Toss – The official shall conduct a coin toss to determine the choice of which goal to defend to start the game, or alternate possession. The visiting team shall “call” the coin toss in the air as “heads” or “tails.” The winner of the coin toss shall select which goal to defend to start the game, which will alternate by quarter. Otherwise alternate possession shall apply.
Game Time – STLMLL games shall consist of four quarters of 15 minutes running time. The clock, however, shall be stopped in the final two minutes of play of each half. There shall be five minutes between quarters, and ten minutes for halftime. There shall be a single overtime period consisting of ten (10) minutes of running time (no stop time in overtime) until sudden victory. If there is no score in the overtime period, the game shall end as a tie. The official shall maintain the game time on the field. The home team shall provide a scorer to manage penalty time and alert the player serving the penalty when their penalty has expired.
The official, however, shall have the option to stop time if a team appears to be intentionally delaying the restart of play after the ball has gone out of bounds, or if the home team needs to replenish the number of balls on the end lines. The official also shall have the option to call a delay of game technical foul (30 second foul). Time should also be stopped for any “on field” injury of a player that requires on field assistance.
NOTE: Regular season games shall play only one overtime period of 10 minutes running time. If no score at the end of the overtime period, the game shall result in a tie. The Championship Game shall be played until sudden victory, and shall consist of as many overtime periods of 10 minute running time until one team scores the winning goal.
Time Outs – Each team shall have two time outs per half with no carry-over. Each team will have one time out per overtime period. The time out period shall be two minutes in length. The game clock shall be stopped during a time out. During live play the team in possession of the ball can call a time out in both the defensive and offensive half of the field. The player in possession of the ball does not have to be in contact with the ground when the time out is called.
Face Offs – NCAA face off rules shall apply. The 4 inch wide stripe and associated distance between sticks is utilized. The NCAA count of “Down,” then “Set,” then whistle shall be utilized for face offs in all League games.
Clears – The possessing team shall have thirty (30) seconds to advance the ball from the defensive end of the field to across the midfield line and into the attack area (below the restraining line). For the 2011 season, the attack area shall exclude the 10-yard alley or wing area between the box and the sidelines. The time count for clears must be used in all games.
Get It In and Keep It In – Within the last two minutes of regulation time in the fourth quarter, the team leading the score shall be required to “get it in and keep it in” the box/attack area below the restraining line, which shall include the wing/alley area.
NOTE: The traditional “box” shall be used at all times for the purposes of the timed clears as well as “get it in/keep it in” stalling situations.
Substitutions – The horn shall not be used. Teams are able to substitute “on the fly” through the substitution box area, subject to adjudication by the official.
Slow Whistle – The slow whistle rule is not used; instead the traditional play on and whistle when the ball hits the ground is utilized.
Alternate Possession – The alternate possession rule shall be in force.
Long Stick Personnel – Each team is permitted a maximum of four (4) “long sticks” on the field. The long stick is as defined in the Uniforms and Equipment section below.
Goal Crease Prohibitions – The NCAA “dive rule” is not used. A goal shall be allowed if a player enters the crease after the ball crosses the goal line. A goal shall be disallowed only when a player enters the crease or makes contact with the cage before the ball has crossed the goal line, and a crease violation is enforced.
Uniforms & Equipment
Uniforms: Teams are not required to have matching jerseys or shorts. The jerseys, however, must be of a like color so as not to cause confusion either for the officials or the opposing team. It is the visiting team’s responsibility to confirm that there will be no uniform color conflicts when traveling to an away game. The home team has the priority for jersey color. Jersey colors will be declared by teams prior to the start of the season to avoid conflicts. Teams are encouraged to use reversibles whenever possible.
The Crosse: The head of the crosse must be between 6.5 and 10 inches wide; the goalie’s crosse may be 10 to 12 inches wide. The attack and midfielder stick shall be between 40 and 42 inches in length. Any stick between 42 and 72 inches maximum in length shall be considered to be a defensive or “long stick.” Each team is permitted a maximum of four (4) “long sticks” on the field. . The new NCAA crosse dimension regulations put in force for the 2010 NCAA season shall not apply to League play. Players are permitted to use sticks legal for play in either high school or NCAA.
There is no mandatory random stick check each quarter by the officials. The official, however, retains the right to check a stick at any time. The opposing team captain may call for a stick check. NCAA rules apply to the resulting determination by the officials.
Alternatively, we may choose to only enforce the long stick rule and other than that, anything goes with regard to sticks.
The Helmet: A protective helmet, equipped with face mask, chin pad and a cupped four point chin strap fastened to all four hookups, must be worn by all men’s players. All helmets and facemasks must be NOCSAE (National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment) approved.
The Glove: All players are required to wear protective gloves. The cutting or altering of gloves is prohibited.
Protective Equipment: All players, with the exception of the goalkeeper, must wear a NOCSAE approved helmet and gloves. Shoulder pads, arm pads, rib pads and mouthpieces are strongly recommended. The goalkeeper is required to wear a throat protector and chest protector, in addition to a helmet and gloves.
Illegal Equipment – Team Captain Request: A team captain can request a stick check, but not a personal equipment check. During a stick check, officials are not to check any personal equipment. However, this does not preclude officials from taking action if they happen to observe illegal equipment.
Fouls and Penalties
Penalty Timing: In light of the fact that the STLMLL utilizes 15 minute running time quarters, all penalty times shall be increased from the NCAA dictated penalty time by a factor of 50% (i.e., technical fouls are assessed 45 seconds and personal fouls are assessed 90 seconds).
However, penalty times revert to normal NCAA rules (30 or 60 seconds for most fouls) during stop time (last two minutes of 2nd quarter and 4th quarter of play).
NOTE: The player shall serve the amount of penalty time as required at the time the penalty is called, regardless of stop time or running time. For example, a technical foul called with 2:05 remaining in the 4th quarter shall serve 45 seconds as the penalty occurred during running time. A technical foul called with 1:55 remaining in the 4th quarter shall serve only 30 seconds as the penalty occurred during stop time.
Unsportsmanlike Conduct: In addition to the “Unsportsmanlike Conduct” fouls listed in Rule 5-Section 10 of the NCAA Rule Book, the following “special conditions” shall apply:
- Racial Epithets and Remarks: A player or anyone officially connected to a team who uses a racial epithet or makes a racial remark shall receive a 4.5 minute non-releasable unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and shall be expelled from the game.
- Obscene Language: A minimum of three (3) minutes is to be assessed for obscene language directed at either an official or an opposing player.
- Maligning an Official: Anyone officially connected with a team or any player who maligns an official, shall receive an unsportsmanlike conduct foul (4.5 minutes, non-releasable). If the same person commits a second maligning foul he shall be expelled from the game and shall serve an additional one game suspension. In the event that penalty time has not started on the first foul, additional penalty time shall not be assessed, only the expulsion. If the person committing the foul is not a playing member of the team, the penalty will be served by the “In Home” of the offending team.
NOTE: Penalty time for all of the above “special conditions” is non-releasable.
Body Checks: A player cannot take more than three (3) steps prior to initiating a body check.
Slashing: Slashing shall be considered to include the following actions:
1) Swinging a crosse at an opponent’s crosse or body with deliberate viciousness or reckless abandon, regardless of whether the opponent’s crosse or body is struck.
2) Striking an opponent in an attempt to dislodge the ball from his crosse, unless the player in possession, in an attempt to protect his crosse, uses some part of his body other than his head or neck to ward off the thrust of the defensive player’s crosse and, as a result, the defensive player’s crosse strikes some part of the attacking player’s body other than his head or neck.
3) Striking an opponent in any part of the face, on the neck, in the chest, on the back, on the shoulders, in the groin or on the head with the crosse (including its butt end), except when done by a player in the act of passing, shooting or attempting to scoop the ball.
4) Note: In all situations except when a player’s gloved hand on his own crosse is in contact with a line marking or the ground, that hand shall be considered part of his crosse.
Fighting: Fighting is NOT tolerated in the STLMLL. Fighting is defined as a player, substitute, non-playing member of a squad, coach or anyone officially connected with a team, deliberately striking or attempting to strike anyone in a malicious manner, or leaving the bench or coaches area during an altercation. The first offense for fighting shall result in a three minute, non-releasable penalty and in the player being expelled from the game and suspended for the next two regular season or championship games. A second offense for fighting shall result in permanent expulsion from the League, subject to appeal.
“Take Out” Checks: “Take out” checks are NOT tolerated in the STLMLL. A “take out” check shall be determined at the discretion of the official, and is in their consideration an act of flagrant “unnecessary roughness” (any act on the part of a player that is deliberate and excessively violent) so as to intentionally cause serious harm or injury to another player (such as intentionally going for an opponent’s knees or head). The first offense for a “take out” check shall result in a three minute, non-releasable penalty and in the player being expelled from the game and suspended for the next two regular season or post-season games. A second offense for a “take out” check shall result in permanent expulsion from the League, subject to appeal.
Expulsion: When any expulsion occurs, the official must notify the STLMLL Commissioner within 48 hours of the occurrence. The League shall notify the team representative of the expelled player that is ineligible, as well as the opposing teams that have games scheduled in which the suspended player will not be eligible. If there are no games remaining in the season, the penalty shall carry over to the next season in which that person participates in the League. Furthermore, any player repeatedly involved in actions deemed detrimental to the game is subject to suspension or expulsion by a simple majority vote of the Executive Board of the League (see By-Laws Section 17.2).
In the event that a player is permanently expelled from the League, the STLMLL Commissioner shall notify all team representatives so that the expelled player cannot join another team. A player can be permanently expelled from the League upon the occurrence of the second incident of fighting, take out checks, or a combination of both, subject to appeal.
A player does have the right to appeal a permanent expulsion from the League. Upon appeal to the League Commissioner, a Board of Inquiry shall commence, comprised of the League Commissioner and Rules Committee, and shall review and rule on the incident, with direct input from the officials involved in the incident and anyone else the Board deems appropriate. The Board of Inquiry shall make every effort to review the expulsion appeal as soon as possible. During the appeal process, the player in question shall not be permitted to play in any regular or post season games until a final ruling is reached by the Board of Inquiry.
Team Rosters and Player Eligibility
Team Rosters: Team rosters shall be fixed following the fourth regular season STLMLL games, regardless of any bye weeks. All team player names, positions and associated jersey numbers must be submitted to the STLMLL Commissioner to be posted on the STLMLL web site following the fourth game and prior to the fifth game. No additions to team rosters shall be allowed following the fourth regular season STLMLL game. Failure to submit a complete roster will result in game forfeits until the roster is submitted and accepted by the League.
Teams are strongly encouraged to finalize and submit their rosters in advance of the deadline so as to lessen the burden on the webmaster.
Playoff Eligibility: A player must attend at least three (3) regular season games in order to qualify to play in the Championship Game. Each team is responsible for maintaining a team roster that includes game attendance for each player on the roster. A player need only attend a game to qualify; they are not required to have played in a game. Thus an injured player could attend three regular season age division games and not play (be on bench/sidelines), and still qualify to play in the Championship Game. Clearly the tracking of attendance at the team level is a matter of mutual trust and honesty.
Minimum Age Requirement: Eligibility to participate in the League is open to players who are or will be 18 years of age in the calendar year of the current season. Player age is determined on a calendar year basis (i.e., what age a player turns during the applicable calendar year).
Minimum Age Requirement Exceptions: Players who are actually 17 at the time the season begins, but will become 18 during the calendar year of the season, will be permitted to play, but will be required to submit an additional release of liability that is signed by the player’s legal guardian.
Proof of Age: Upon request, all players must be able to provide proof of age if challenged by the opposing team. If a player cannot provide proof of age, they shall be disqualified and expelled from that game. Any goals scored by a player who is unable to provide proof of age shall be disallowed.
Team captains are advised to maintain a notebook with the team roster and photocopies of the proof of age (driver’s license) for all players on the roster. Photocopies, however, of a driver’s license or other identification shall no longer be deemed as acceptable proof of age. Acceptable proof of age shall be a valid state or federal identification (state driver’s license, state identification card, military identification card, passport or visa). No exceptions are permitted. Players are highly encouraged to have their proof of age on the sidelines so it is readily available upon request.
Illegal Players: A player shall be considered illegal if they are underage and/or non-roster (not listed on the team roster following the fourth regular season game).
A team captain can request an “age check” for the verification of age for a player on the opposing team, similar to the “stick check” call, at any point during the game. It is suggested, however, that such requests are made during logical stoppage points in the game (after a goal, during a timeout or at the end of a quarter).
Penalties/sanctions for the first offense in the use of an illegal player will be the forfeit of the immediate game in question. A second offense in the same season will result in suspension from the League of the team and all of the players on its roster, plus the illegal player(s), for the remainder of the current season as well as the following STLMLL season. By suspending all players on a team’s roster for the second offense of utilizing an illegal player (non-roster and/or underage), the responsibility for policing a team’s actions falls upon the entire team, rather than just the team Captain/League representative. Thus everyone on the team has a stake in adhering to the written and published STLMLL rules regarding the use of illegal players.
Schedule Changes, Forfeits and Cancelled Games
Schedule Changes: The home team shall be responsible for and have jurisdiction over game location, date and start time. Any changes to the published STLMLL regular season schedule must be communicated to both the opposing team and the officials at least one week (7 days) in advance of the scheduled game. This shall include changes of date, start time and/or location of the scheduled game.
If a team requests a change in the published STLMLL schedule, the burden shall fall upon that team to find a mutually convenient and acceptable date, time and/or location in which to play the game. In the spirit of good sportsmanship, both teams shall make every effort to find an alternative date, time and/or location. If the teams are unable to find a mutually acceptable date, time and/or location to make up the cancelled game before the end of the regular season, then a 10-0 loss will be awarded to the team that requested the schedule change.
The regular season shall be considered to end on the last day that a regular season game is scheduled per the most recent published STLMLL schedule.
Forfeits: In the case of a forfeit, the team that forfeits the game shall be awarded a 10-0 loss. A forfeit shall occur if a team does not have at least 8 players dressed and ready to play at the start of a game, including goalie. A forfeit shall also occur if a team requests a change in game date, time or location less than a week (7 days) in advance of the scheduled game, and the game is not able to be played or adequately rescheduled prior to the end of the regular season.
In the event of a forfeited game, the entire roster of the team that has the game forfeited against receives credit for the game as being played, whereas the entire roster of the team that forfeits the game gets no credit for the game played. In this manner, the team that is forfeited against shall not lose a potential game for playoff eligibility purposes.
Game Cancellation Due to Weather/Lightning: If a game is cancelled due to weather and/or lightning, it must be made up at the earliest mutual convenience of both teams. It is understood that weather conditions may preclude a team from utilizing its regular home field out of concern for damage to the field. If the teams are unable to find a mutually acceptable date, time and/or location to make up a game cancelled due to weather before the end of the regular season, then the unplayed game shall be treated as a “bye” with no points awarded to either team (essentially omitted from schedule and standings).
In the event that a game already underway is cancelled by the officials by reason of weather and/or lightning, then either:
1) If the game is cancelled prior to the start of the second half of play, then the game will be rescheduled according to the Schedule Change procedures outlined above
2) If the game in cancelled in the second half of play, then the score at the time of the game cancellation shall be the considered the final outcome. For example, in the case where Team A is leading Team B by a score of 6-5 in the second half of play when the game is cancelled due to lightning, then Team A shall be awarded the 6-5 win. If the score is tied 6-6, then each team shall be awarded a 6-6 tie.
Post-Season Qualification and Ranking Criteria
The top two (2) teams shall qualify for the Championship Game, based upon the following criteria:
1) Overall STLMLL regular season record = total points
2) Head-to-head match-ups, as determined by goals against differential of the regular season games played between the teams tied
3) Best record versus common opponents. In situations where a team plays a common opponent more than once and they split a two game series, the average points per game shall be used.
4) Goals against average (total goals against divided by the total number of games played in the STLMLL regular season)
Two (2) points shall be awarded for a win, one (1) point shall be awarded to each team for a tie, and zero (0) points are awarded for a loss.
PLEASE NOTE: The STLMLL Rules Committee shall serve as the final and binding arbiter in the event of conflicts or disagreements between teams involving rules interpretations, schedule changes, and forfeited or cancelled games, at the discretion and bidding of the STLMLL Commissioner.
Implemented April 2011