IHSLL Stats to Keep
Official Men's Lacrosse Statistics Rules
Approved Rulings and Interpretations
Based on an original set of guidelines developed by Doyle Smith, this manual has been created to provide consistent rulings of the statistical components of men’s lacrosse.
STATISTICIAN’S JOB—The statistician’s job is to record the statistics as they happen, accurately reflecting what happened and not what might have happened if something else had not intervened. What this manual is intended to provide is a set of guidelines to determine officially what actually happened. Should there be doubt in the mind of the statistician, he or she should utilize the guidelines and philosophies in this manual. If there is no doubt, then the statistician should follow his or her observation.
SECTION 1—GAMES PLAYED
Article 1. A player should be charged with a game played if he is in the game while the clock is running.
(3) For the purposes of statistics, a game should not be charged to a player if a team’s game is never played or if the game is declared a forfeit by the game official before the contest has progressed to a “reasonable point of conclusion”
(4) Charge a game played to a player if a team’s game is unfinished, but is declared by the official to have progressed to a “reasonable point of conclusion” (three quarters completed). See Appendix A for more information.
The first Attack listed is ALWAYS the In-Home. In-Home Penalties: Any penalty that by definition should be served by the designated in-home will be credited as a team penalty and not to the player designated as the in-home.
Article 1. A ball propelled toward the goal by an offensive player shall be called a shot. The ball may be thrown from a stick, kicked, or otherwise physically directed to be credited as a shot. The statistician should take care to award shots only when possession of the ball can reasonably be said to have occurred or by ricochet or when a controlled effort can be construed (somewhat similar to controlled tips in basketball).
Article 2. A ball that enters the goal propelled by the offensive team must then become a shot and a goal.
Article 3. A ball that ricochets off another player and scores will be credited as a shot by the player deemed to have scored the goal.
Article 4. In the case of a team goal (also known as an own goal), there is no shot recorded. See Section 2–Goals for more information.
NOTE: One of the most common misdefinitions in lacrosse is that of “shot on goal.” A shot on goal is not the same thing as a shot at the goal. The latter encompasses all shots; the former encompasses only shots scoring and those having been saved by the goalie. A shot that hits the pipe is not a shot on goal. (Philosophy: A shot that hits the pipe IS a shot and should be recorded as a shot with no save. “Shot On Goal” has nothing to do with statistician’s job for TVLL. If a coach wants a separate On goal/off goal stat for his team, that is of no concern to the TVLL)
A.R. 1. Offensive player A1 passes the ball to teammate A2, but A2 does not catch the pass. The ball rolls toward the crease and would have rolled into the goal; the goalie is credited with a save and A1 is charged with a shot.
A.R. 2. Player A1 takes a shot before stepping into the crease. In this case, the shot counts, and the result of the shot counts. If A1 takes a shot from within the crease, there cannot be a save and it does not count as a shot. If A1 gets pushed in the crease, the shot and save and result is still credited.
Article 1. A goal should be credited to the player who shot the ball, scoring a goal for his own team. In certain situations, a team goal also known as “own goal”) may be credited. However, statisticians should err on the side of awarding the goal to the player who took the original shot.
(1) A player’s shot that enters the goal after a ricochet should be credited as a goal to the original shooter unless the player the ball ricochets off of intentionally redirects it into the goal.
(2) A ball entering the goal that appeared to have been a pass to another player shall be counted as a shot and a goal for the player who made the pass.
(3) A team goal will be credited if a defensive player gains possession of the ball and then causes the ball to enter his own team’s goal. A.R. 1. A goalie who flings the ball up field against a full field ride, causing the ball to enter the other team’s goal, shall be credited with a shot and a goal.
A.R. 2. Player A1 takes a shot that hits teammate A2 and deflects into the goal without any intent on the part of A2 to redirect the ball. Credit a goal to A1. No assist.
A.R. 3. Player A1 takes a shot that deflects off of teammate A2, who clearly causes the ball to be redirected into the goal. Credit A2 with a shot and goal and A1 with an assist.
A.R. 4. Player A1 takes a shot that deflects off defensive player B1’s body or stick and goes into the goal. Credit A1 with a goal.
A.R. 5. Player A1 takes a shot that the goalie originally stops but does not control and does not gain possession, and then the goalie inadvertently causes the ball to go into the goal (e.g., kicks, hits with his stick). Credit A1 with a goal and no save for the goalie.
A.R. 6. Player A1 takes a shot. The goalie makes the save and has clear possession of the ball. However, the goalie then causes the ball to enter the goal. Credit A1 with a shot, the goalie with a save, and Team A with a team goal.
(4) If a team is credited by the game official with a forfeit win, 1-0, that team shall be credited with an team goal.
(5) Any goal scored that is subsequently nullified for any reason shall not be credited to any player.
(6) Any goal (or any other statistic) in a game played and subsequently forfeited shall be counted for the appropriate player.
Philosophy. An assist is not necessarily credited to a player who makes a pass before a goal. There should be conscious effort on the part of the passer to find an open player for a shot or to help a player work free for a shot. There should be no particular time frame for an assist (although the pass and shot should appear to be part of the same play) nor should there be any rigid distance factor in the play (the player scoring the goal could take one step, several steps, or even run a number of yards with the ball and still have the passer credited with an assist). An assist should not be credited on a play when the goal scorer dodges a defensive player after receiving the pass before shooting unless, in the opinion of the statistician, it was the pass itself and not the dodge that led directly to the shot.
Article 1. A player is credited with an assist when he makes, in the opinion of the statistician, a pass contributing directly to a goal. An assist cannot be credited to any player other than the one who had the ball immediately before the player credited with the goal.
A.R. 1. Player A1 passes to teammate A2 and the pass finds A2 open for a goal. Credit an assist to A1.
A.R. 2. Player A1 passes to teammate A2 in a circle offense against a zone defense, a pass that appears to be a routine pass in a series around the zone. A2 shoots and scores; credit an assist to A1 because his pass led directly to the goal.
A.R. 3. Player A1 shoots, the shot misses the cage, and teammate A2 picks the ball out of the air, and then shoots and scores. Credit A1 with an assist, although his intent may have been to score, not pass the ball.
A.R. 4. (a.) Player A1 passes the ball to teammate A2 who has a one-on-one play with the goalie. A2 fakes the goalie several times, shoots and scores. Credit the assist to A1 because there is supposed to be a goalie in the crease and sometimes a fake will be necessary to score. (b.) A1 passes the ball to A2 who has a one-on-one with a defender and an untended cage. A2 fakes the defender, shoots and scores. Do not credit an assist on the play because A2 had to fake a defender who was not the goalie.
A.R. 5. Player A1 passes to teammate A2 cutting across the crease. A2 is closely guarded but shoots an over-the-shoulder or behind-the-back shot that scores a goal. Credit A1 with an assist, because in spite of there being a considerable move to score, the pass accorded A2 with an advantage that he did not previously have and because the shot was an immediate result of a pass with no essential fake to get free.
A.R. 6. Player A1 has the ball in his stick, and opponent B1 knocks the ball out of his stick. The ball goes directly into A2’s stick, and he shoots and scores. Do not credit an assist, because A1 having the ball was irrelevant to A2 scoring a goal.
A.R. 7. Player A1’s pass to teammate A2 is deflected and A3 catches the ball, shoots and scores. Do not credit an assist.
A.R. 8. Player A1 throws a pass to teammate A2, who is open on the crease. A2 shoots, and opponent B1 stops the ball but does not catch it; A2 picks up the loose ball and scores. Do not credit A1 with an assist.
A.R. 9. Player A1 passes the ball to teammate A2, who is wide open. A2 holds the ball for more than a short period of time (10 seconds, for example). A2 then shoots and scores. There should not be an assist on the play, since the pass became irrelevant to the scoring of the goal. A statistician should carefully consider which element of the play was the more significant.
A.R. 10. Player A1 attempts a shot or pass that would not have gone into the goal. It hits teammate A2 in the shoulder and is redirected into the goal. Credit A2 with a shot and goal, and credit A1with an assist.
A.R. 11. Player A1 attempts a shot or pass that would not have gone into the goal. It hits a defensive player’s body and is redirected into the goal. Credit A1 with a shot and goal; if a teammate passed the ball to A1, normal assist rules apply.
A.R. 12. Player A1 has the ball and passes it to teammate A2 as a bounce pass, and A2 takes a shot: Credit A2 with the shot (and goal if scored); A1 is credited with an assist (if goal is scored); no ground ball is credited on the play.
A.R. 13. Player A1 passes the ball to teammate A2, who shoots; the ball touches A3 or a defensive player, but this does not materially change the direction of the ball, and it goes into the goal. Credit A1 with an assist and A2 with a shot and goal; a ground ball is not credited on the play; and A3 is not credited with any statistics. If A3 or a defensive player does materially affect the flight of the ball and the ball goes into the goal, credit A3 with a ground ball, shot and goal.
A.R. 14. Player A1 picks up a loose ball in front of his crease and runs 90 yards down the field and makes a pass to teammate A2, who makes one dodge, and then shoots and scores. Credit A1 with an assist.
Note. While there must be some understandable leeway in judgment as to whether an assist should be credited on any given play, statisticians should endeavor to be consistent with both teams and during the season. It cannot be specified as to how many assists there should be in any given game, nor is it possible to extrapolate any average number per game. Some games may have very few assists and some may have many. Types of offenses may determine how many assists there will be per game as much as anything else.
Philosophy. The basic rule of a save is that any time a ball is stopped or deflected with any part of the goalie’s body or stick, which if not stopped or deflected would have resulted in the ball entering the goal, a save is recorded. The statistician should focus on what would have happened to the ball if it had not been stopped or deflected by the goalie. If the shot would have scored, then award the goalie a save. If it would not have scored, do not credit a save. The tendency is to give a goalie a save every time he touches a shot; this creates inflated statistics. No matter how difficult it is to tell, the statistician should make consistent judgments on each shot that the goalies stopped or deflected. Consistency must be maintained so that the national statistics are meaningful.
Article 1. Offensive efforts that the goalie prevents from going into the goal are considered saves. A team save can be credited in certain situations (see approved rulings below). If the goalie is in the crease, no one else can be credited with a save (including a team save).
Article 2. A blocked shot by a defenseman is not considered a save unless the defenseman is in the crease and the goalie is not.
Article 3. A shot that hits the pipe, rebounds off the goalie’s body and would go into the goal if not stopped by the goalie is credited as a save. A shot that hits the pipe, rebounds off the goalie’s body and would not go into the goal before picked up by another player is credited as a ground ball.
A.R. 1. Player A1 shoots the ball from anywhere on the field, and goalie B1 stops the ball from going into the goal, but is not in the crease when he does so. Credit B1 with a save.
A.R. 2. Player A1 takes a shot, goalie B1 stops the ball from going in the goal but does not control the ball, and A2 picks up the loose ball and scores. Charge A1 with a shot, credit B1 with a save, and then credit A2 with a ground ball, a shot, and a goal.
A.R. 3. The goalie intercepts a pass or shot that otherwise would not have gone into the goal while standing in the crease; credit the goalie with a ground ball.
A.R. 4. The goalie makes a save, but doesn’t control the ball. However, the goalie is uncontested and picks up the ball again; credit the goalie with a save, but no ground ball. If the ball would have been contested in that situation, credit the goalie with both a save and a ground ball.
A.R. 5. The goalie steps out of the crease and there are also no defensive players in the crease. A shot is taken and a defensive player stops the ball; credit this as shot that is blocked, not a save.
A.R. 6. Goalie B1 is not in the crease, but defenseman B2 is and he makes a save. Credit it as a team save for Team B.
A.R. 7. The goalie is in the crease, and a defenseman is also in the crease; the non-goalie defenseman stops the ball. No save is credited. It is a shot that is blocked.
A.R. 8. Player A1 passes the ball to teammate A2; A2 does not catch the pass, and the ball rolls toward the crease and would roll into the goal, but goalie B1 stops it. Credit B1 with a save and charge A1 with a shot.
A.R. 9. Defenseman B2 passes the ball to teammate B3, who does not catch the pass. The ball then rolls toward the crease and would roll into the goal, but goalie B1 picks it up. Credit goalie B1 with a ground ball, but not a save.
SECTION 5—Ground Balls
Philosophy. Any ball not in possession of either team that comes into possession of either team should result in a ground ball once a player establishes possession and is immediately able to perform the normal functions of possession (i.e., shoot, pass, cradle), provided the ball was contested by both teams before establishing possession. A ground ball could be awarded even if no opposing player is within considerable distance of the player when he gets possession of the ball.
Article 1. The statistician will determine whether or not the ball is being contested, keeping in mind that contested could refer to the original player with possession, the player gaining possession or the ball itself.
Article 2. Once a player is in possession of the ball and drops it while uncontested, and then regains possession, he cannot be credited with a ground ball even if he is contested while regaining possession. If that player has the ball checked out of his stick and then regains possession, he may be credited with a ground ball.
Article 3. Ground balls can be credited as part of the faceoff play. In a faceoff situation, a ground ball should be credited to the player who gains clear possession regardless of whether or not the player gaining possession is being contested at that time.
Article 4. A ground ball should be credited to an offensive or defensive player who gains possession of the ball and prevents it from going out of bounds even if the play was not being contested. The philosophy is to give statistical credit for gaining or maintaining possession.
Article 5. A loose ball that is not contested and would not reach the midline or go out of bounds should not result in a ground ball.
A.R. 1. Player A1 passes the ball to A2, but opponent B1 intercepts the ball. Credit B1 with a ground ball.
A.R. 2. Player A1 has the ball checked out of his stick and (a.) the ball stays inbounds, where it is picked up by another player or (b.)
the ball goes out of bounds without anyone else obtaining possession. Credit a ground ball in scenario (a.) but no ground ball in (b.).
A.R. 3. Player A1 shoots the ball, and goalie B1 makes a save but does not control the ball. Player A2 picks up the ball, shoots and
scores. Credit A2 with a ground ball, a shot and a goal.
A.R. 4. Player A1 has the ball in his possession and while switching hands on his stick, drops the ball and picks it back up. No ground ball is credited on the play.
A.R. 5. The goalie makes a save, but doesn’t control the ball. However, the goalie is uncontested and picks up the ball again; credit the goalie with a save, but no ground ball. If the ball would have been contested in that situation, credit the goalie with both a save and a ground ball.
A.R. 6. Player A1 chases a loose ball that is not contested and would not reach the midline or go out of bounds. A1 is not credited with a ground ball.
A.R. 7. Player A1 chases down a loose ball, preventing it from going out of bounds, and is not contested. Credit A1 with a ground ball.
A.R. 8. Player A1 has possession of the ball and is running off the field under a special substitution situation. He places the ball on the ground and then leaves the field. A2 comes on the field and picks up the loose ball. Do not credit A2 with a ground ball unless the ball was being contested when he picked it up.
A.R. 9. Player A1 has the ball in his stick, opponent B1 checks the ball loose, and several players on the field attempt to pick it up, but it is immediately checked away before A1 has clear possession and another player picks it up. Credit a ground ball to the player that ultimately gains possession.
A.R. 10. Player A1 has the ball, passes it to teammate A2 as a bounce pass, and A2 takes a shot. Credit A2 with a shot (and goal if scored); A1 with an assist (if goal scored); and no ground ball on the play. Justification: a bounce pass that is received is not credited as a ground ball.
A.R. 11. Defensive player B1 passes the ball to teammate B2, but B2 does not catch the pass. The ball rolls toward the crease and would have rolled into the goal, but the goalie picks it up. Credit the goalie with a ground ball.
A.R. 12. If player A1 kicks the ball toward the goal in an attempt to score, credit A1 with a ground ball and shot. Normal goal-scoring and save rules apply in this situation dependent upon the outcome.
A.R. 13. If player A1 intentionally directs the ball to teammate A2 with his foot or part of his body or stick, and then A2 gains possession, credit a ground ball to either A1 or A2, but not both. The statistician should determine which player most impacted the gaining of possession. Justification: only one ground ball can be credited on a play.
A.R. 14. Player A1 takes a shot that hits the side of the net, and then the goalie or defenseman B1 picks the ball up. No ground ball is credited on the play.
A.R. 15. Player A1 takes a shot, which goes wide of the net and is fielded by teammate A2. Credit A2 with a ground ball.
A.R. 16. Player A1 takes a shot, which goes wide of the net and is fielded by opponent B1. Credit B1 with a ground ball.
Philosophy. Since many faceoff men must depend on the statistics of faceoffs to provide an evaluation of their value, statisticians must be consistent in their assessment of faceoffs. Since the standard in faceoff stats is to award to the faceoff man the faceoff, whether he actually obtained possession, care should be taken to credit faceoffs properly. Additionally, ground balls should be credited in faceoff play (there can be more than one) as indicated in Section 5. Every faceoff has to end with players being credited and charged with a faceoff win and loss, unless the quarter ends before possession is established. Unlike women’s lacrosse, the two players who participate in the faceoff are the only players who can be credited and charged with a faceoff win and loss.
Article 1. A faceoff win is determined by clear possession of the ball, not by the subsequent offensive opportunity. A standard alternative to that definition is to credit and charge the faceoff when one team is declared to have possession of the ball, and wing area players are released. This is not really a viable definition since a team may never have a chance to do anything with the ball.
Article 2. Credit the faceoff to the team that gains clear possession of the ball and can perform the normal functions of the possession, not based on the possession that is called by the referee. The referee’s signal of possession has no influence on the statistical determination of faceoff wins and losses. The referee’s signal frequently precedes the statistical definition of possession.
A.R. 1. Player A1 faces off for his team. He has clear possession of the ball in the faceoff situation, but the ball is immediately checked
away. Opponent B1 picks up the ground ball, and his team maintains possession of the ball. Credit the faceoff to Team A because A1 established possession of the faceoff.
A.R. 2. The ball goes out of bounds on the faceoff before a team gains possession of the ball. Credit the faceoff to the team that is awarded the ball on the out-of-bounds play. If neither team is credited with the ball out of bounds, delay the crediting of the faceoff until the subsequent reface is concluded.
A.R. 3. Before either team can obtain the faceoff, a player on either team is charged with a foul or violation. Credit the offended team with the faceoff, if one team gets the ball. In the case of a double foul, or any other violation requiring a reface of the ball, wait to credit the faceoff until the play is complete.
A.R. 4. A goal is scored near the end of a period. If there is no faceoff, no faceoff shall be credited statistically. If the faceoff occurs, credit and charge the faceoff as judgment allows by determining possession (or something very close to it) when the period is ended. No faceoff shall be credited when the quarter expires before one player gains clear possession.
A.R. 5. If a period ends in an uneven situation, such that there will be no faceoff to start the next period, no faceoff statistics should be recorded.
A.R. 6. If there should be an extra faceoff during a period for any reason, credit and charge the faceoff according to the above rules.
A.R. 7. Player A1 wins the faceoff, retreats to the defensive end and turns the ball over. Credit A1 with a faceoff win.
A.R. 8. If player A1 and opponent B1 face off, and A1 wins the faceoff and picks up the ball, credit A1 with a faceoff win and a ground ball.
A.R. 9. If player A1 and opponent B1 face off, and teammate A2 is the first player to get clear possession, credit A1 with a faceoff win and A2 with a ground ball.
Philosophy. A clearing attempt is defined as when a team has possession of the ball behind its defensive restraining line to the offensive attack area. A successful clearing attempt involves the team establishing possession in its offensive box before the other team gains possession.
SECTION 11— Miscellaneous Notes and Definitions
Article 1. Any statistics that occur either due to a violation or during a play-on situation do not count.
A.R. 1. Player A1 steps into the crease and then attempts a shot that goalie B1 stops. Do not charge A1 with a shot or credit B1 with a save.
A.R. 2. The referee signals a play-on situation, and Player A1 picks up the ball. If the referees blows his whistle to stop play, do not credit Player A1 with a ground ball.
Crease Violations: If an offensive player steps into the crease AFTER shooting the ball, credit the shooter with a shot and the goalie with a save (if applicable) or the shooter with a goal if applicable (and an accompanying assist if necessary) if a goal is credited by the officials. If the offensive player shoots the ball and then steps into the crease resulting in a play-on situation, credit all applicable stats.
Flag Down Situations: If play continues after a flag has been thrown indicating a penalty will be called, then the only statistics that the defensive team can earn between the time the flag is thrown and play stops are a intercepted caught pass (ground ball) or a save if all of the requirements for those are met. Note – a ground ball can only be earned if it is picked off in the offensive team’s box. The offensive team may be credited for all stats (ground ball, shot, goal, assist) during the time between the flag and the stoppage of play other than a turnover.
A.R. 1. With a penalty flag down but play continuing, player A1 takes a shot that would have gone in the goal but is stopped by goalie B1. Credit A1 with a shot and goalie B1 with a save.
Forfeit Scores: If a forfeit is declared by the game official while a contest is in progress or a situation occurs that forces a premature end to the contest, all statistics (other than won-lost and coaches’ records) are voided unless the contest has progressed to a “reasonable point of conclusion” (three quarters in men’s lacrosse), in which case all statistics shall count and shall be reflected in all records. If the game had progressed to a “reasonable point of conclusion” and the team that was in the lead at the time was declared the forfeit winner, the score shall stand. In a men’s lacrosse game, if the score was tied or the trailing team was declared the forfeit winner, then the official game score should be recorded as 1-0. Also in these cases, in sports in which individuals receive wins or losses such as baseball, softball, field hockey, ice hockey and lacrosse, do not credit an individual with a win or loss, but rather enter a team line for these statistics. If a game in progress is declared a forfeit win to one of the teams by the game officials and the game has not progressed to a “reasonable point of conclusion,” then the official game score should be recorded as 1-0. The team’s won-lost record shall include the forfeit, but if the statistics are voided, all averages in future rankings shall be computed without inclusion of the forfeited contests.
“No Contest” Declaration: There is no forfeit of a contest until all participating teams are present and the referee or other appropriate contest official has assumed jurisdiction in accordance with the applicable playing rules. When a team does not appear (e.g., due to weather conditions, accidents, breakdown of vehicles, illness or catastrophic causes), a forfeit is not recorded. An institution shall not, for statistical purposes, declare a forfeit for nonfulfillment of a contest. Such instances shall be considered as “no contest.” In circumstances involving institutions from the same conference, the league office has the option to declare a forfeit win and loss for conference-standings purposes only but this does not change an institution’s overall won-lost record.