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From the National Federation of State High School Associations

2009 Lacrosse Rules Changes

The National Federation of State High School Associations has enacted the following rule changes for high school lacrosse for the 2009 season:

Rule changes


1-7-4 (new) More clearly defines the measurement procedure and requirements for the table-top diagram.

1-9-1 Note: Stipulates in the rules that the tooth and mouth protector can cover either the upper or lower teeth.

1-9-2d Clarifies that tinted eye glasses are allowed unless a player is also wearing a clear, molded and non-rigid helmet eye shield. Also defines an eye shield as a helmet eye shield to more clearly identify that the eye shield is attached to the helmet.

4-22-2a Clarifies that the common practice of allowing substitution after a goal, time-serving penalty or time-out is allowed without the necessity of a request for a horn by the coach.

4-23-3 Stipulates that regular substitutions are allowed for time-serving violations since the horn is sounded but are not allowed after play has been suspended for non-time-serving violations or inadvertent whistles.

4-24-2f Stipulates by deleting 4-24-2f that special substitutions are now allowed when play is stopped for equipment violations.

5-5 Stipulates that gloves must cover the fingers and palms and that gloves manufactured without a palm are not allowed.

7-3 Clarifies that, should a penalty occur when the ball is in the goal area, play must be re-started laterally outside the goal area, nearest to the spot of the ball at the time of the whistle instead of at the "top of the box."

7-6-4 Clarifies that, if both teams are awarded equal penalty time when neither team has possession of the ball and a faceoff is pending, the faceoff shall be held instead of using alternate possession.

Points of Emphasis


Officials should be alert to and call stalling warnings during the game if it is apparent that the offensive team is not attempting to attack the goal and score.

Glasses and helmet eye shields

Helmet eye shields are allowed provided they are clear, molded and non-rigid. Eye glasses are not helmet eye shields and are not restricted by these provisions. Thus, glasses (either tinted or clear) are allowed to be worn during play. The only exception to this provision is that tinted glasses cannot be worn with a helmet eye shield. A player can wear clear glasses with a clear helmet eye shield but not tinted glasses with a clear helmet eye shield.

Uniforms and equipment

Officials are reminded that a revised jersey rule took effect with the 2008 season. The jersey must be a single, solid color with only limited trim in a contrasting color allowed. These trim requirements are included in rule 1-9 in this rule book. Should a team have jerseys or other uniform violations, these must be identified by the officials prior to the beginning of the contest and penalized accordingly. Following the contest, the officials must notify the state association of the school's illegal uniforms so that they can address the situation with the school. Realize that equipment violations are handled differently as stipulated in the rules.