Girls Lacrosse Rules Changes - 2022

By NFHS on August 12, 2021 lacrosse-girls Print

2-4-7b, 2-5-2d, 4-2-3e, 4-6, 4-7-1, 4-7-5b, 4-7-6, 4-7-7c, 5-2 PENALTIES 2 EXCEPTION – Allows for substitutions to occur more fluidly throughout the game including between overtime periods, during a re-draw and during the administration of a player suspension/ejection matching the flow created by free movement.

2-6-1 (NEW) – Removes the requirement of shin protection for the goalkeeper while maintaining the option to wear shin protection creating consistency between girls and boys lacrosse. 

2-6-1b, c, NOTE (NEW) – Allows goalkeepers to wear a clear, molded, and rigid helmet eye shield in combination with tinted or clear eyeglasses. Aligning eye shield and eyewear permissiveness and requirements to those of other NFHS rules codes.

2-7-3 – Allows face masks that are soft and non-abrasive to be worn for health and/or religious reasons while maintaining that protective molded face masks are not permitted.

2-7-5 –Allows players to wear hair ties and other soft, non-rigid items on the arm and clarifies that hair adornments such as beads can be worn in the hair as long as they are secured and do not endanger other players.

2-7-7 (NEW) – Allows the wearing of religious and/or cosmetic headwear during competition that fits securely and is made of non-abrasive or soft materials, eliminating the requirement for prior authorization from the state association. Maintains the requirement for approval of protective head coverings worn for medical reasons.

2-8-5 (NEW) – Allows the use of personal audible wireless communication devices by officials during competition to aid in communication as the pace of play has increased due to self-starts and free movement.

4-1-2, 4-2-2, 4-2-3, 4-6 – Eliminates the requirement to stop the clock on every whistle during the last two-minutes of each half and overtime while requiring the clock to stop on all fouls in the critical scoring area during the last two-minutes of the of each half and overtime (unless playing with a running clock). Official’s time-outs now include alternating possession, inadvertent whistle and offsides.

4-3-3d, e, f & g (NEW)– Establishes that when play is restarted for a possession time-out and the goalkeeper has possession of the ball in the goal circle, play will resume from the goal circle and clarifies that if play resumes with a free position it will begin at the spot of the free position.

4-8 PENALTIES 2, 3 & 4; 5-2 PENALTY 1; 5-3e(3); 10-1 PENALTIES 8 & 10; 12-8 MISCONDUCT PENALTIES (4) – Simplifies management of the free position and aligns with the principles of free movement by eliminating the requirement for player positioning for the draw after scoring penalties.

5-1-3b– Clarifies player positioning if no foul is involved in the stoppage of play when the game is stopped due to an accident, injury or illness, inadvertent whistle by an official, interference or an incident either related or unrelated to the ball at the time the whistle is blow.

5-5-3, 5-5-3b(1) & (2) Allows the goalkeeper to return to goal circle unless the goalkeeper committed the foul, eliminating the advantage to the opponent with free movement if the goalkeeper is required to stay out when closest to the incident.

6-3-1a, b & c; 6-3-2a, b & c; 9-1n Allows any opponent to commence play with a self-start once the ball has gone out of bounds when self-starts are allowed, eliminates the whistle start and establishes defensive positioning and engagement guidelines while clarifying the penalty for passing from out of bounds.

7-2-1d Allows the goalkeeper to bring a ball back into the goal circle provided one foot is inside the goal circle creating more clarity to the officials.   

9-1c(1) Eliminates failure to stand as a false start. A delay of game may be enforced if repetitive violations occur.  

9-1k (NEW) Establishes that a player on the field of play must enter and exit the field through the substitution area to switch sticks with a stick from the bench area.

10-1 PENALTIES 1 and 5 (NEW) Changes the penalty for a false start by a goalkeeper in the goal circle, allowing them to stay in the goal circle for the free position by the opposing team at the closest dot.  

Rule 13 Removes the definition of “Body Checking” from the rules book as it is an outdated term and not referenced in the rules book.


2022 Girls Lacrosse Major Editorial Changes

5-4-4 (NEW) – Adds and aligns language that self-starting when self-starts are not permitted is a false start already established under major fouls.

Appendix B – Manufacturer’s Specifications – Removes the guidance for manufacturers from the rules book while ensuring all equipment related rules essential for the administration of the game are with in Rule 2.


2022 Girls Lacrosse Editorial Changes

1-1-4h; 1-1-4i; 2-2-2; 2-2-4; 2-4-3; 2-4-4; 2-4-7; 2-4-8; 2-4 PENALTIES 1, 3 & 4; 2-5-1; 2-5-2; 2-5-2c; 2-5-3; 2-6-1; 2-7-2; 2-7-5; 3-5-1; 3-7-3; 4-7-5a; 4-8-3i; 4-8 PENALTIES 3 & 4; 5-1-3b; 5-5-3b; 8-1-2 NOTE; 8.1.2 NOTE SITUATION; 8-1 PENALTIES 1; 8-1 PENALTIES 3d; 8-1 PENALTIES NOTE; 9-1g(1); 10-1y(2); 10-1y PENALTIES; 11-2 PENALTIES 5; 13-GROUNDED


2022 Girls Lacrosse Points of Emphasis

  1. Sportsmanship
  2. Rough & Dangerous Play
  3. Shooting Space