Georgia Polocrosse

                                    Sandie Creek Polocrosse Club


Each team is comprised of two sections of three players each.  One section of three players takes the field for a chukka (time period) of eight minutes while the other section rests.  At the end of the first chukka, the sections switch so that horses and riders can rest every other chukka.  The combined score for both sections is the final score of the game.

The “line of travel” and “line of the ball” rule(s):  No one can cross in front of another player unless they are so far away that it will not affect the other horses travel or speed (this includes your own team mates).  In order to swap sides on the opposing rider, you must check your horse and cross from behind with the further limitation that you cannot cross behind in such a manner that there is no space between your horse’s head and the opponent horse’s rear (your horse’s head can not go over another horses rear, you must allow sufficient space to cross safely).  Likewise if the ball is rolling down the field, you must not cross the line of the ball (you can cross behind the ball provided you don’t cross another rider’s line of travel).

#1 Goal Scorer:  This player is allowed in the midfield area and in his team’s goal scoring area (that are being defended by the other team).  Only the #1 player is allowed to score a goal or to be in the other team’s goal area.

#2 Mid-Fielder:  This player is allowed to play only in the midfield area.  If the #2’s horse enters the goal scoring area inadvertently, then the #2 must not interfere with play and leave the area immediately.

#3 Goal Defender:  This player is allowed in the midfield area and in the other team’s goal scoring area. 

Only one horse can be used by each player in a tournament, and that horse may not be played more than 54 minutes a day. 

To begin the game, the two teams line up beside one another in the middle of the field on the sideline and the umpire throws the ball into the midfield area and play begins.  The ball can be either caught by one of the players or picked up off of the ground with the racquet.  The player can catch or pickup the ball from either side of the horse but once the ball is captured, the ball and racquet must be carried on the same side of the horse as the arm carrying the racquet.  The opposing team can attempt to dislodge the ball by swinging their racquet into the racquet carrying the ball.  You may only swing your racquet in an upward motion and any downward or side swings result in a foul. If the defender’s racquet is carried over the center line of the horse a foul occurs and possession of the ball is transferred to the opposing team.

No one can carry the ball over the 30 yard line (also called the penalty line).  Since only the #1 player can enter the goal scoring area and only he can score a goal, it is only he that can receive the ball within the 30 yard scoring area.  Therefore, if the #2 or #3 player has possession in midfield, they must pass the ball to the #1 player within the scoring area.  If the #1 player has possession within the midfield area, he must bounce the ball as he crosses the 30 yard line (and attempt to retrieve it within the goal scoring area before the defender gets the ball).

Within the goal scoring area, the #1 player attempts to throw, roll, bounce or otherwise cause the ball to travel between two goal posts.  He must do this from within the goal scoring area but he and his horse must be outside of the 11 yard arc at the point when the ball is released.  He may rush at the goal and enter the 11 yard arc but he must have released the ball prior to entering the arc or the goal is invalid (and possession goes to the other team).

All the while the #1 horse is attempting to score a goal, the opponents #3 horse in attempting to block the goal by using his horse to block access and his racquet to dislodge the ball.  Positioning of the horses and riders is very important as due to the fact that the ball carrier can not allow his racquet to cross the horse or riders centerline, it is almost impossible to throw the ball over the horse without violating the centerline rule.  Likewise due to the rule regarding “line of travel” and “line of the ball” the defender can not cross in front of the ball carrier but instead must attempt to stay a half step ahead and between the scorer and the goal post. 

While this competition is occurring in the goal scoring area of one team between the #1 scorer and the #3 defender, the balance of the teams jockey for position in midfield in case possession transfers and the other team needs to make a mad dash to the opposite end of the field with the ball and be prepared to roll, bounce, throw the ball across the opposite penalty line and score.

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