Good Afternoon Everyone,

There have been many questions about the ward in boys’ lacrosse. Below is the interpretation of a ward from the NFHS. Please let me know if you have any questions. This will also be posted on the NFHS boys’ lacrosse page.

Thank you!

James Weaver
Director of Performing Arts and Sports
National Federation of State High School Associations


  1. A ward is not to be called on a player with 2 hands on his crosse.
  2. A bull dodge, lowering the shoulder, could be considered unnecessary roughness if the official judges the contact was excessive or unnecessary.
  3. A spear should be penalized with a minimum time of 2-minutes NR.
    1. Lowering the helmet into the other player’s helmet or body is a spear
    2. Potential for ejection as with any check involving the head/neck if excessive or severe.
  4. If the body contact is judged as legal, the offensive player shall not be called for a ward.
    1. The contact is either legal, or it is unnecessary roughness.