The Game of Lacrosse

Q: Can you tell me a little bit about the sport of lacrosse?

A: The sport of lacrosse is a combination of basketball, soccer and hockey. Anyone can play lacrosse--the big or the small. The game requires and rewards coordination and agility, not brawn. Quickness and speed are two highly prized qualities in lacrosse. An exhilarating sport, lacrosse is fast-paced and full of action. Lacrosse is played with a stick (the crosse) which must be mastered by the player to throw, catch and scoop the ball. Lacrosse is one of the fastest growing team sports in the United States. Youth participation in the sport has grown over 138% since 2001 to nearly 300,000. No sport has grown faster at the high school level over the last 10 years and there are now an estimated 228,000 high school players. Lacrosse is also the fastest-growing sport over the last six years at the NCAA level with 557 college teams in 2009, and that's just the tip of the iceberg. There are more than 500 college club programs, including nearly 200 women's teams that compete at the US Lacrosse Intercollegiate Associates level.  To learn more go to www.uslacrosse.org.


Program Overview

These programs are open to boys and girls in grades K-8, who live or attend school in the towns of Berlin, Boylston, Clinton, and West Boylston.  Any player is welcome into our program who does not already have a lacrosse program in their town. The program is built around participation in the Mass Youth Lacrosse

Q: What are the age groups?

A: Our league uses a grade-based system.  There are four groups:  U9 (Grades K-2); U11 (Grades 3 & 4); U13 (Grades 5 & 6); U15 (Grades 7 & 8).  Secondarily your child must be under 15, 13, 11, 9, and 7 respectively (but over the age of 4) as of August 31st prior to the start of the season to participate in these grade-based programs.


Q: Can my child play outside their age group?

A: A waiver is required to allow children to play outside of their age group.  Please let us know if your child has developmental, emotional or other physical characteristics for which it would be best that he plays below his prescribed age group.  Since the recreational program is designed for children to play with their friends and peers, we don’t allow players to play up.  


Q: When is the season?

A: Indoor practice sessions start in late February or March.  The outdoor season begins at the beginning of April or when the town fields are open.  Games begin in early April and the season ends with jamborees in June.


Q:  What towns do we play?

A: All teams will play an 8 game schedule and are considered "travel teams" in that we play other towns both home and away.  Our division generally covers Central Mass teams typically between 30-45 minutes away like Shrewsbury, Grafton, Sturbridge, Leominster, Northborough/Southborough but can extend as far as Framingham, Natick or Weston. Home games are played at Hillside Field in Boylston.


Q: When are the practices?

A: Practice times will be announced closer to the season and are dependent on gym availability. In late February/early March, we start indoors at Hillside Gym in Boylston. Outdoor practices begin once the town has opened the fields, and practice days may change due to field availability. Typically there will be two practices per week for each age group to start, and then there may be an additional practice per team based on the coach’s discretion. You coach will touch base with you via email/app once teams are determined. Players are expected to attend practices or their playing time during games may be limited.


Q: When are the games?

A: All games will be played on Sundays, anywhere from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. Sometimes weather messes the schedule up and fields simply cannot be released. This will delay games. When this happens, it is a struggle to get those games rescheduled. We will do our best to communicate with parents and do what is most convenient for the majority. There may also be a few optional weeknight games later in the season that would be organized and scheduled at the individual coach’s discretion.  A regular schedule typically consists of 4 home games and 4 away games.  Games typically last between 75-90 minutes and players are often asked to be at the field 30-60 minutes before game time. Sometimes extra games or scrimmages can be fit into the schedule at the leagues discretion. When league wide scheduling is finished, all games will be posted in the Master Schedule.


Q: How do I get a uniform?
A: New players are required to purchase a complete uniform. Players can use them for multiple seasons until they no longer fit or wear out. All players will be able to order new or replacement pieces before the start of the season. An email will be sent out mid February when our online uniform store is open. This is the ONLY time uniforms will be available for purchase. 
Q: What equipment is needed?
A: Lacrosse specific equipment is required in order to participate on the first day of practice (no hockey or football equipment). 
  • Lacrosse stick (not a fiddle stick)
  • Lacrosse helmet
  • Lacrosse chest pad (must have heart guard certification tag)
  • Gloves
  • Elbow pads
  • Mouth guard 
  • Cleats preferred
  • Sports cup

Q: Where can I buy equipment?
A: There are many places that sell equipment, some offer discounted "starter packages:"

  • Dick’s Sporting Good

  • Play It Again Sports in Leominster

  • Kleen N Hard Sports in Worcester

  • The “For Sale” tab of our website may feature items offered by members of our organization.

  • We have a donation bin filled with donated equipment items that we will have available on uniform hand out day.

Q: What is your refund policy?

A: GYL strives to keep costs to parents and players as low as possible. GYL is a not-for-profit organization. Fees are used to pay for field maintenance, equipment, tournaments, league memberships, officials, etc.

The GYL Board of Directors has implemented a refund policy. Refunds are granted within the guidelines and timeframes listed below. If you are going to request a refund, please read the following information to make sure you qualify.


1. Refunds must be made in writing and submitted to the Board of Directors by the date stated below.

          Boys Teams 3/1

2. Any refund granted shall be subject to deductions for any processing fees, uniform fees, late fees and MYL Membership fees, etc.

3. Refunds will not be provided due to families inability to accommodate practice/game times, specific coach/team request (placement concern), or carpool requests except within the dates and for the amounts shown in the guidelines above. Injuries are a apart of all sports at any level and are not generally considered as a reason for a refund, except within the dates and for the amounts shown in the guidelines above. GYL cannot accommodate specific requests for late registrants - they will be placed on a team if there is an open spot.   

4. GYL Board of Directors reserves the right to change this policy at any time and to deny or approve a refund for any reason. We strive for consistency and fairness and will evaluate every request objectively. However, there may be circumstances the GYL did not foresee when forming this refund policy that may require us to deny or approve a particular refund request or to amend the refund policy.

*All refund requests should be directed to the Board of Directors guardiansyouthlax@gmail.com.