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Frequently Asked Questions

Updated 10.23.2021

If you have a question not answered here, email .

What is the mission of MBGLL?

MBGLL’s mission is to promote girls’ youth lacrosse in an environment that emphasizes fun while developing skills, teamwork, good sportsmanship, and integrity. This includes…

  • Nurture a player’s skills as they develop
  • Act as ambassadors and keepers of the sport
  • Promote the growth of girls’ lacrosse throughout Eastern MA and provide appropriate services for mature programs
  • Cultivate and assist new towns to start girls youth lacrosse programs
  • Train girls’ youth lacrosse coaches and umpires
  • Manage the growing competitiveness among coaches, players, and spectators
  • Create a weekly match schedule for member teams

What is girls’ lacrosse and how does it differ from the boys’ game?

Girls’ lacrosse is a non-contact, fast-paced sport where female athletes run up and down a field passing and shooting a ball at a goal with their lacrosse sticks. Mass Bay goes a step further and promotes girls’ youth lacrosse in an environment that emphasizes fun while developing skills, teamwork, good sportsmanship, and integrity. The main difference between boys’ lacrosse and the girls’ game is that the boys allow contact while girls’ lacrosse is a non-contact sport.

What ages play in MBGLL?

MBGLL offers instructional league play in five age/grade-based groupings:



Level Birthdate Grade
U9 Under the age of 9 by August 31, 2022 1st/2nd
U11 Under the age of 11 by August 31, 2022 3rd/4th
U13 Under the age of 13 by August 31, 2022 5th/6th
U15 Under the age of 15 by August 31, 2022 7th/8th


Waivers to this grade level policy are reviewed on a case by case basis. Please review our Guidelines for Grade Waivers and then submit a waiver request to your division director. We strongly recommend that players participate at their age/grade level.

Do U9 (1st and 2nd graders) and U11 (3rd and 4th graders) usually play 7 v 7 plus an optional goalie?

U9 and U11 teams in all divisions play 7 v 7 plus an optional goalie. (Most teams have a goalie.)  The 7 v 7 format encourages the mastering of the game’s fundamentals while allowing for an age appropriate transition to the 12 v 12 format.

How should MBGLL teams set up 1st through 4th grade play?

One coach per team is permitted on the field for U9 but the coach is prohibited from entering the 12 meter fan “area.” No coaches are permitted on the field during the end-of-season jamboree.  No coaches on the field for U11.


Coaches are required to keep 2 players back behind half field.  


Use a shortened field by either moving one goal to the center circle or playing horizontally across a regularly sized field. Some towns are painting a goal circle inside of the center circle on a regularly sized field. Remember to use flat cones to mark goal circles when the goal is moved and you are unable to paint a goal circle.

How many players should towns keep on a team roster?

MBGLL does not have required roster guidelines. The number of players per team should depend upon many factors, including, but not limited to, the number of players with other sports/drama commitments as well as the number of coaches and assistant coaches available. With that said, MBGLL recommends the following team sizes to maximize playing time and the coach to player ratio:

U9 grade teams – 12 to 16

U11 grade teams – 12 to 16

U13 grade teams – 18 to 24 players

U15 grade teams – 18 to 24 players


Do players have to play in their own town?

MBGLL requires that players participate in their town's program.  There are some exceptions, however.  If a player goes to school in a different town, she has the option to play with her schoolmates. If a town doesn't offer a lacrosse program, a player may play for a neighboring town.   

What is MBGLL Select?

The goal of the MBGLL Select League is to allow those girls who excel in lacrosse the opportunity to play against other athletes with similar skills and passion within MBGLL’s framework.


MBGLL Select is offered to U13 and U15 players. Teams are comprised of a town’s strongest players and all athletes must play on evenly balanced teams in the recreational league. All MBGLL Select players commit to recreational and select play practices. In return for their dedication, these players receive an additional 6-game schedule outside of the recreational games. Games are scheduled on Friday nights or Saturday afternoons. USA Lacrosse Transitional Checking rules apply for the U15 league and modified checking for the U13 league. Standings are kept and head and assistant coaches for MBGLL Select teams should be USA Lacrosse Level 1 certified.


MBGLL suggests that towns consider holding try-outs for these teams and use disinterested 3rd parties (eg HS coach or college coach) to evaluate and rate the players to keep the process as impartial as possible.


Please note that towns may combine to field a team.


What rules do the leagues follow?

MBGLL teams follow US Lacrosse rules with a few exceptions. (Refer to the rules card to view MBGLL-specific rules.) Otherwise, the leagues follow these rules:


U9, U11– U10 Rules

U13  – U14 Rules

U15 – U14 Rules (modified checking)

U13 Select - (modified checking)
U15 Select -  (transitional checking)

What is the 3-pass rule and when is it used?
MBGLL requires a 3-pass rule at U9 and U11.   Please see the 3-pass rule under "rules." 


Are scores and standings kept?
MBGLL does not permit teams to keep or post scores or standings at the U9 or U11 Level.  U13 and U15 team coaches may keep score quietly.  Towns have the option of using a scoreboard at the U13 and U15 Levels.  However, the scoreboard should report no more than a 4-point differential. 


As a reminder, towns should not report scores in publications or run up the score.  Keeping score is permitted so that coaches may make appropriate coaching decisions during the games.  We want all girls to enjoy their time on the field, not just the superstars or winning team.  Please coach and keep score responsibly to continue to support MBGLL's mission. 


As an organization, it is part of our mission to grow the sport of lacrosse.  We actively encourage new teams to join and novice players to participate at any grade level.  Eliminating lopsided scores and standings helps to encourage these new programs and players to join MBGLL without the fear associated with losing games or the pressure to only have star players touch the ball so that a team may get as high of a score as possible.  Scores and standings are kept for MBGLL Select games.

Are players required to have a colored mouth guard?

Mass Bay is following US Lacrosse’s guidelines regarding mouth guards. All mouth guards must be colored. No protrusions, such as tabs, are permitted.

What is the Jamboree?

MBGLL offers an end-of season Jamboree to all recreational teams. This is an opportunity for teams to play towns that they might not meet during the regular season. Typically teams sign up for a morning or afternoon slot and play three different games during that time period. The jamboree is a wonderful, opportunity for players to end their spring lacrosse season and is a way for MBGLL to promote girls’ youth lacrosse in an environment that emphasizes fun while developing skills, teamwork, good sportsmanship, and integrity.

What is the Sportsmanship Award?

A league-wide Sportsmanship award is given to those teams who show outstanding leadership on and off of the field. MBGLL encourages teaching life lessons as well as promoting the sport of lacrosse. The Sportsmanship award is a way to recognize those teams who go above and beyond to help those in their community, whether it be on or off of the field, while expanding the sport of lacrosse. To learn more about MBGLL’s Sportsmanship Award, please click on the Sportsmanship Award link on mbgll.org’s web site

How is MBGLL Organized?

MBGLL has a Board of Directors which is responsible for managing the overall league. Our geography is broken into geographic divisions in which U9 through U15 recreational teams play an 8-week schedule in April, May and June.  MBGLL Select leagues play a 6-week schedule.

We count on volunteers to help run MBGLL. If you would like to volunteer by joining the board, coaching a team, starting a program, or sponsoring an event, please send an e-mail to .

How do new programs get started with MBGLL?

Contact the MBGLL New Programs director ( ). In addition to guidance, MBGLL and USA Lacrosse have opportunities to help new programs with equipment and other start-up expenses.

What are MBGLL’s requirements for coaches?

MBGLL requires that all coaches belong to USA Lacrosse to take advantage of its insurance benefits and to support the growth of the game of lacrosse.  Our league is a key constituent of USA Lacrosse and is taking part in shaping the future of the game, worldwide. You may register with US Lacrosse at www.usalacrosse.com.

MBGLL has outlined its town and coach's requirements under Sportsmanship and Compliance.    MBGLL suggests that each town conduct a CORI search on its coaches. CORI checks are required by the state of MA.  National background checks are required by USA Lacrosse at the time of your membership renewal and they do not take the place of a CORI check.

Do players have to obtain USA Lacrosse membership?

Yes, all players (and coaches) must obtain USA Lacrosse membership prior to starting the season. MBGLL requires USA Lacrosse membership to take advantage of its insurance benefits and to support the growth of lacrosse. No one may step onto the field without a current USA Lacrosse membership.  If extra games are scheduled against non-MBGLL teams, all players must have a USA Lacrosse number or they cannot appear in our scheduling system for liability reasons.

Why does MBGLL require players and coaches to join USA Lacrosse?

MBGLL requires all players and coaches to join USA Lacrosse to capitalize on the lacrosse-specific insurance benefits. Having all participants subscribe to this lacrosse-specific insurance also limits liability for MBGLL Town Programs and Coaches.  But, more than the insurance benefits, MBGLL is helping to build and support the growth of lacrosse across the nation.  We are a key constituent of USA Lacrosse.  We run a fantastic organization and are leading the way for other leagues to follow.  Finally, we have achieved our USA Lacrosse Gold Standard and are recognized as one of the strongest, safest, and most comprehensive leagues in the nation.  Mass Bay Girls Lacrosse League is making a difference and shaping the game for future generations.


As members of USA Lacrosse, you are actively taking part in stewarding the game of lacrosse.  In return, you are receiving many valuable benefits including sports science and safety research/best practices, helping to keep your daughter safe while playing.  Other benefits include comprehensive insurance coverage that lasts for the entire year, lacrosse resources such as the Mobile Coach App, #LaxAtHome channel, and the USA lacrosse magazine – all developed to teach and inspire the love for the sport of lacrosse.  Couple these benefits with National Background screenings, cultural and diversity initiatives, grants, and regional support, and you know that you are part of a strong program promoting excellence in lacrosse for all participants.


Mass Bay Girls Lacrosse League has achieved our USA Lacrosse Gold Standard program status and is recognized as one of the strongest, safest, and most comprehensive leagues in the nation.  Mass Bay Girls Lacrosse League is making a difference and shaping the game for future generations.

How does MBGLL determine its team registration fees?

MBGLL is organized as a non-profit organization. We try to only carry enough of a balance in our checking account to cover present and impending future costs. Our fees may be slightly higher than that of other leagues because of the additional services that our league provides it members. Specifically,…

1. MBGLL offers seemless integration to our scheduling tool, League Athletics.  It is used to create the entire schedule for our league as well as to schedule our umpires. It can also be used at the member level to track town field usage, team rosters, registrations, e-mails, etc. The features are numerous.

2. MBGLL is pleased to offer various coaches’ training opportunities through the year. In a typical year we host USA Lacrosse Level 1 and 2 Coaches' Training Clinics, as well as Rules Q. and A. and Rules Clinic sessions.  -ins, and an end of season wrap-up meeting.  Further, in a typical year we offer several pre-season events for players, coaches, and parents.    Finally, we offer a play-date with the umpires and game opportunities.

3. In order to manage the growth of our league, MBGLL has invested in a paid, part time executive director position. This is especially necessary during a time when our league is growing and volunteerism is diminishing.


What are grade waivers?

MBGLL requires coaches to submit a grade waiver requiest to their division director prior to the start of the season.  (Check the calendar for the exact date.)  Grade waivers are used when a team wants a player to participate on a team for which they do not qualify by age and grade.  Grade waivers are not required if a player wants to play up one level.  For example, a 6th grader may play on a U15 team without a grade waiver.  A 5th grader would require a grade waiver authorization to play on a U15 team.  Grade waivers are required for any play who wants to participate in a team that is of a lower grade or age level.  

Can players participate on club and high school teams?

While we do not encourage this, players are permitted to play in MBGLL's league and also on a club team.  It is up to the coaches to ensure that the players participate in practices and play by MBGLL rules when in one of our games.  

If a player is an 8th grader and wants to play on a Freshman (or JV if no Freshman team exists), that is permitted without a grade waiver.  MBGLL does not permit players to play on varsity teams and in our league.

How does a town program qualify for MBGLL's Gold Star Status?

​Towns that exemplify MBGLL's highest of standards qualify for MBGLL's Gold Star Member Status.  To qualify, towns must submit a spreadsheet to their division director indicating coaches' compliance, town compliance commitments (including volunteering) and not have any outstanding sportsmanship issues.  

Do players and coaches have to register with MBGLL?  Yes.  All players and coaches should fill out a participant waiver, found on www.mbgll.org.


How do I find out more information?

Please visit our Board of Directors directory to find the e-mail address you are looking for or send an e-mail to .