This section highlights areas of the game that the NFHS/US Lacrosse Rules Subcommittee believes warrant continued attention by placing a stronger emphasis on existing rules. The committee requests that players, officials and coaches concentrate on the following areas:
A new mandatory yellow card has been added. Dangerous Contact is defined as any action that thrusts or shoves a player with or without the ball who is in a defenseless position. This includes but is not limited to: head down, from out of the visual field, in the air or out of balance especially in the kidneys, ribs, lower back, shoulder blades or aimed at the neck or head.
While some body contact will occur during normal play, there is no justification for deliberate and violent collision by any player especially intentional player-to-player collisions with defenseless players. The increase in the severity of the penalty is intended to send a strong message that this type of play is unacceptable. All participants must work together to reduce or eliminate such violent collisions from the game.
Being a good official is more than calling fouls and setting up penalties. Each game
has its own ebb and flow and good officials recognize that and call the game within
the rules while maintaining safety. Game management is the sum of all parts of the
umpires use of her tools to control a game– confident posture; use of mandatory
cards; making the necessary calls to keep the game safe; upgrading penalties when
warranted; partner/player/coach communication with signals, whistle, voice and
calm demeanor; appropriate holding versus whistling of fouls; ability to anticipate
and diffuse dangerous situations; and understanding the importance of safety and
how it applies to aggressive versus reckless play.
Officials must be vigilant to watch for and penalize offensive player fouls that lead
to dangerous play. During midfield transition and/or when going to goal watch for
attack players who force themselves through the defense or hold their stick too
close to the body and/or sphere making a safe and legal check impossible. If a safe
check cannot be made by a defender in a legal defensive position, this is a foul on
the attack. When body contact occurs, officials must determine who established
position first and who initiated the illegal contact to make a fair call. An attack player
who jumps to shoot over the top of defender(s) or follows through with or without
body contact may create a dangerous situation. She does not need to make
contact to be called for dangerous and/or intimidating play.