Team Code of Conduct

Code of Conduct: Student athletes participating on the Riverdale Boys Lacrosse Team must keep in mind that they are always in the public’s eye and that behavior at practices, games, in and out of school may be recorded on cell phones and transmitted far beyond the local area. Assume you are being recorded.  Personal conduct on and off the field is always subject to scrutiny of fellow teammates and students, teachers, administrators, parents/guardians, fans, opponents, and the media. Athletes are always representing their school and coaches and should ALWAYS conduct themselves accordingly. That includes verbal behavior, music choice and volume, dress, and how you carry yourself at games and practices.

Substance Use and Abuse: The use of drugs, including alcohol, by students – is illegal. The use of these substances by students participating in the Riverdale Raider Lacrosse Program is strictly forbidden.  Athletes violating these rules will face discipline and possibly dismissal.

Attendance: Attendance is mandatory at all practices and games. We learn new plays, clears, offenses, defenses, and formations every week, sometimes specifically for a team we are playing. When a player misses practice, it is impractical for us to re-teach something we did the day before. Simply put, players have to be there, always.  Attendance will be taken on a daily basis at ALL boot camps, conditioning, special events, practices and games. Times listed for practices are the starting times. Athletes are expected to be in proper apparel and ready to go at the stated times, or they will be considered late.  Arriving late may result in additional conditioning for the entire team. Three lates will count as one (1) unexcused absence. One (1) unexcused absence will result in benching for that upcoming game. Three (3) unexcused absences will result in dismissal from the team. Athletes must provide a written note from a parent or doctor in order to be excused from practices and games. Examples of excused absences are the death of a family member, a school-related (retake of a test, parent-teacher conference) or religious function, or a doctor-ordered release from participation (players may still be required to attend practice/games in this instance). Work and club meetings are NOT an excused absence. If a player misses practice, and they were in school, the player must provide a written excuse upon returning to practice.

Written excuses must include:

  1. The date of the practice or game you will be missing/missed.
  2. Reason you will be/were absent.
  3. Signature of a parent or doctor.

If a player is absent from school on a day when there is a regularly scheduled practice or game (with the exception of medical excuse, pre-approved college visit, court order, funeral, or other pre-approved excuse by the principal), that player is NOT eligible to practice or participate in a game on that day.   Excessive absences from school can impact playing time. Athletes coming late to or leaving practice early must have a written note from a parent. If an athlete foresees absences that may be perpetual throughout the season, that player is encouraged to discuss it with the coaching staff during the week of squad reduction.  At that time, the coaching staff will make a determination as to whether the practices will be excused.

Behavior and Sportsmanship: Disruptive and disrespectful behavior will NOT be tolerated at any time. All players are expected to be supportive of and positive toward all teammates. Any athlete that becomes a negative influence on the team through their behavior will be dealt with as soon as the coaching staff is able to break away from his or her duties. Players will be given a verbal warning in most cases (except those listed in Major Infractions below). No explanations are necessary and discussions about the incident will be reserved for before or after practice or at a time when coaches feel it will not disturb the flow of a game or practice.

Athletes may be given a separate activity (like extra conditioning or running laps or picking up ground balls) for inappropriate behavior. Athletes will not be allowed to re-enter the original activity until approval by the coaching staff.

Continued behavioral issues will result in a conference with the athlete, coaching staff, parents, and others as needed to evaluate the problem as well as the athlete’s future role with the team.

***Athletes can be suspended from the team for an indefinite period of time for inappropriate behavior or subordination at any point. Length of suspension will be the coach’s discretion. Good sportsmanship is an essential quality that all athletes need to possess and practice. Poor sportsmanship will not be tolerated and will be addressed by the coaching staff.

Insubordination. Players will be quiet when coaches are talking. No exceptions. If you continue to talk while a coach is explaining or talking you will be asked to leave and your practice day will be counted as an unexcused absence. Pay attention as you would (or should) in a challenging academic class. Talking back, shouting over, or challenging a coach will not be tolerated. There is a zero tolerance policy on this topic. You will be asked to leave immediately and there will be a conference with the coaching staff and administration and anyone else as necessary.

Major Infractions

Emotional Bullying

  • first offense, discussion
  • second offense, sit a game
  • third offense, removed from team

Physical Bullying

  • first offense, suspension from the team pending a parent meeting
  • second offense, removed from team

Fighting with teammates

There will be NO tolerance for fighting. Upon determination of primary aggressor:

  • first offense, sit a game
  • second offense, removed from the team

Fighting with other team

You will be removed from the team immediately for the remainder of the season

Arguing with referees

You will sit at least a half, more if you get a penalty.It is a penalty in lacrosse for any player to speak with the referee. That is the coach’s exclusive job.


There is absolutely NO tolerance for stealing from your teammates. None. We all work hard for what we have.

First offense, removal from team


A team is built on trust and hard work. If we can’t trust you, you can’t be a member of our team.

  • first offense, discussion
  • second offense, removal from team

Missing practice for unapproved reason

  • miss a game
  • three misses, removal from the team

In-game unreleasable 3-minutes penalty for modified stick head/unnecessary roughness

  • sit a game

Game Participation- Selection of athletes for games will be based on several factors. The coaching staff has final authority over an athletes game participation both at the Varsity and Junior Varsity level. Factors that the coaching staff will consider when considering game participation include, but are not limited to:

  1. Attendance and performance at practice and games.
  2. Athletic ability and game skills.
  3. Attitude and sportsmanship.
  4. Interaction with the team and coaching staff.

Playing philosophy– RHS coaches will endeavor to field the best team possible for all games. This formula is static, but the players that make it up may vary from game to game based on a variety of factors.  Players wishing to play on the varsity squad must be in excellent physical condition and be committed to constantly improving their skills. We will sacrifice performance in cases where players violate the code of conduct as described in this document. We would rather lose and behave ethically than win and compromise our values. Play time is at the sole discretion of the coaching staff. There are no guarantees of a minimum number of minutes played per game or season.

Junior Varsity– The focus here is to get players the experience needed to improve their skills and understanding of the game.  The coaching staff will make every attempt to get players the opportunity to play as much as possible while still maintaining a level of competitiveness.   

Field condition/equipment/maintenance/setup/breakdown

  1. The team must leave the practice and game fields clean after use. The team will do sprints for every bottle or piece of trash left behind after games and practice.
  2. All balls that are taken out will be put back at the end of practice. If you shoot it, you chase it. You lose it, you replace it.
  3. Players will be assigned a team number at the beginning of the season. Memorize it. We will use it to assign tasks such as getting goals, shagging balls, setting up and breaking down equipment.

One team, one family. No divisions.

Once assigned to a team, you are a member of that team and are considered equal to all other players on the team. There are no favorites. There are no divisions on the team based on age, grade, skill level, etc. All players are the same when it comes to administration and tasks. For example, there will be no singling out of freshman to carry goals or seniors to cut out early and not clean up.

Selection of captains.

The role of captain is open to anyone of any grade who shows leadership qualities and has a demonstrated ability to lead his or her fellow players. Captains will be selected by the coaches. There may be any number of captains or none, and the role may be temporary, rotating, or permanent. The title of captain is an honor and can be rescinded by the coaching staff at any time. 


  1. All athletes must be at the point of departure on time and ready to leave.
  2. Food and drinks will only be allowed on the bus after the bus driver gives permission.
  3. The team must make sure the bus is clean and all trash picked up.
  4. For every piece of trash that is left on the bus, athletes will encounter additional conditioning during the following practice.
  5. If trash continues to be a problem, food and drinks will NOT be permitted on bus trips.
  6. Athletes will show respect for the host school by cleaning up benches before leaving.

***All warm up or game music must be approved by the coaching staff in advance and should be accompanied with a complete list of what is on the CD (artist and song).


Each season begins with tryouts in mid-January (January 18, 2016). At present, all interested players are vying for a position on the Varsity girls and boys squads. In absence of a Sub-Varsity (Junior Varsity) team or a practice squad, there will be a limited number of positions available on the teams. By Florida High School Athletic Association rules, lacrosse teams are limited to 25 players for post-season play, and it is impractical for us to maintain more than that during the regular season.

There are no guarantees of making the team. If you played last year it is no indication or guarantee of making the team this year. With a limited number of slots on either the boys or girls team, coaches will be looking at not only how well the team will do this year but also at the long-term development of the program. Players may be chosen because of their potential or how they fit into the overall mix of talent and personalities. Players should be open to trying new positions. Player preference has little to do with final assignment.

Tryouts will consist of skill evaluations in the following areas:

  • Ground balls with dominant hand
  • Ground balls with off hand
  • Throwing with dominant hand
  • Catching with dominant hand
  • Throwing with off hand
  • Catching with off hand
  • Cradling with dominant hand
  • Cradling with off hand
  • Passing Accuracy
  • Shooting
  • Knowledge of the game
  • Attitude
  • Fitness
  • Coachability
  • Leadership qualities
  • Focus/paying attention

While skill levels are important, they are only part of the overall equation. Coaches look for intangibles, like attitude, leadership, willingness to work with other players and with coaches, and teamwork.


Revised 01/19/2018

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