My my My my

Lacrosse Rules in Brief

Men's lacrosse is played on a field 110 yards long by 60 yards wide, with 6' by 6' goals 15 yards in from the end lines. Each team has ten players: a goaltender, three defensemen, three midfielders and three attackmen, with free substitution permitted. Each team must keep four players in the defensive half and three players in the offensive half of the field at all times, although these need not be the defensemen and attackmen. High school teams play twelve-minute quarters (varsity) with three-minute sudden victory overtime periods.

Center face-offs are used at the start of periods and after scores. Players scoop the ball off the ground, carry it, pass it, catch it and shoot it with a stick, called a "crosse". Players may kick the ball or direct it with their bodies, but only a goaltender may use his hands.

As long as they keep both hands on their sticks and the contact is between the waist and shoulders, defenders may use their hands, forearms, chests and shoulders to check the body of an opponent who has possession of the ball or is within five yards of a loose ball, including a ball in flight. From the front, these "body checks" may be forceful; from the rear, a defender may stop but not reverse the direction of the offensive player. A defender may use his stick to poke, slap or hold the stick and gloved hands of an attacking player who is in possession of the ball or within five yards of a loose ball, but he must not use his stick against an opponents's body. Offensive players may not make any deliberate contact with any defender, although they may set a "pick" by freezing to create an obstacle. Only defensive players may enter the "crease" circle around each goal.

If an unsuccessful shot on goal goes out of bounds, the player nearest to the ball when and where it goes out of bounds is awarded possesion. On all other out-of-bounds plays, the ball is awarded to the team that did not last touch it. When a team gains possession in its defensive end of the field, it has ten seconds to advance the ball over the clearing line 20 yards in front of its goal. Once the ball crosses the midfield line, the offensive team has ten seconds to advance it into the 40 by 35 yard "box" around the opponents' goal, and the ten-second count is renewed whenever the ball leaves this box. When a team is warned for stalling or has the lead in the last two minutes of the game, it loses possession if the ball leaves the box except on a shot.

"Personal fouls", including illegal bodychecks, slashing and cross-checking, are penalized by a one- to three-minute suspension from play, with the ball awarded to the offended team. "Technical fouls", such as pushing, holding and off-side, result in possession of the ball being awarded to the offended team, plus a 30-second penalty if that team already had possession. Penalized players may reenter the game if the other team scores, unless the penalty is designated "non-releasable".



Essex County is lucky in that there are area retailers who specialize in lacrosse and have either affordable price-tiered equipment packages based on age/sometimes skill level as well as advanced products.  Retailers that have worked with MBJL:






For K-2, only a lacrosse stick is required (will need to be cut down; check-in with your coaches once season starts. When buying a complete stick (plastic head and alloy shaft) stick will be between 40" and 42"). 

After 2nd Grade Players are required to have full equipment (stick plus body protection), rules set by NJLLA and U.S. Lacrosse, and High School Athletics.


Full Equipment Consists of the Following:

1. Regulation Lacrosse Stick

2. Lacrosse Helmet with 4-point Chin Strap (youth designated or one of the "fits-most" designated helmets designed for young adults to adult) and colored Mouth Guard (not clear or white). Helmet shell should be standard white in color with black or chrome facemask.

3. Lacrosse Shoulder Pads

4. Lacrosse Arm Pads/Arm Guards

5. Lacrosse Gloves

6. Athletic Cup. Check with your coaches on that, but cups are required for 5th-8th grade).

7. Performance Footwear/Cleats or Turf Shoes with nubbies on the bottom; practice and game fields will either by on natural grass, field turf (fake grass), or old style astro turf in one or two cases). Running shoes/sneakers, skateboard sneakers (Sketchers, etc.), fashion sneakers (New Balance, other brands), HAVE NO LATERAL SUPPORT! and can lead to injury!  Performance footwear/cleats are required for 5th-8th grade.  Baseball cleats are prohibited. Check with your coach in other grades.

8. Goal-tenders:  Need more specialized equipment:

A. Lacrosse Goalie Lacrosse Stick: oversized head with either a regular "field" length shaft or goalie shaft (goalie shaft is a little sit longer; depends on age, size and playing style of player).

B. Helmet must have hard plastic throat guard that is bolted or attached at earlobes.  Comes in clear, black, color usually. Colored Mouth Guard required as well; cannot use white or clear in color.

C. Goalie Chest Protector: more protection in mid-section and body area than regular "field player" shoulder pads.

D. Goalie specific cup/athletic supporter recommended; usually compression type short with insert pocket. 

E. Lacrosse Gloves; Goalie specific lacrosse gloves recommended due to added protection features such as reinforced protection for thumbs.

F. Elbow pads or Arm Pads/Guards are now required for all 3-8 Grades, no exceptions and player will not be allowed to play by game officials (new rule, 2016).

G. Performance Footwear (described earlier above) or Lacrosse Cleats (baseball cleats prohibited). 

H. Optional for 3-8th Grade: shin guards, football hip protecting compression shorts (Nike), etc.


For more Info:

For more information about rules & equipment, see Lacrosse Rules @ USLacrosse.org: