Basketball Rules | Strafford Sports Center


All league games will be governed by the official rules as adopted by the National Federation of State High School Associations (These are the rules utilized by MSHSAA as well) with the following exceptions and additions.

length of games

  • All games will have two 18 minute halves.
  • All games will have a running clock until the final two minutes of the second half. In the event of a 15+ point lead, the clock will run the final two minutes. For the K-1 division the clock will run when there is a 10+ point lead.
  • The clock will only stop during technical free throws or any official time outs


  • K-2: NO Pressing
  • K-3rd grade: Must guard half court only, cannot engage until the ball has passed half court line. Defense MUST stay behind 10ft volleyball line until the ball has passed half court.
  • 3rd grade: No pressing until last 2 minutes of the game
  • 4th-12th grade: May press except when 20 point lead


  • K-1: No individual fouls will be kept. However, if a player is excessively fouling, they will be asked to substitute, but will not foul out.
  • 2nd grade & up: Individual fouls will be kept

Overtime Rules

  • No overtime in K-1
  • First OT is 2 minutes (stops the last 30 seconds).
  • Second OT is 2 minutes (stops the last 30 seconds).
  • Third is free throws (First team to make while other team misses wins).


  • Each team is allowed (3) 30 second timeouts that will not carry over into overtime.
  • In the event of overtime, each team will be given 1 timeout total.

forfeit time

  • Game time is forfeit time.
  • A team must have 4 players to start the game.
  • A team may not “pick up” players not on their team to have enough to play unless the opposing coach approves. If the opposing coach protests, the game may be played with the understanding that the team using the “pick up” players will officially forfeit the game, no matter the score.
  • In the interest of sportsmanship, if one team has only 4 players, we encourage the opposing team to use 4 players as well. This is not required, but is encouraged.

Goal height

  • K-1st grade boys and girls – 8ft goal
  • 2nd grade boys and girls – 9ft goal
  • 3rd-12th grade boys and girls – 10ft goal
    • NOTE: 3rd grade can request a 9ft goal if players are having difficulties with the 10ft goal.

ball size

  • K-6th grade boys and girls – 28.5″, regulation girls ball
  • 7th-12th grade girls – 28.5″, regulation girls ball
  • 7th-12th grade boys – 29.5″, regulation boys ball

free throw distance

  • NOTE: K-3rd grade players may land on line, but not cross it.
  • K-1st grade – Shoot from 9 feet
  • 2nd & 3rd grade – Shoot from 12 feet
  • 4th-12th grade – Shoot from regulation
  • Players outside the perimeter are not allowed to run in until the ball hits the rim and must stand above the free throw line.


  • All players must have uniforms of matching colors and numbers on the back.
  • Teams are encouraged to have reversible uniforms in the event both teams have the same colors.

Game & warm-up balls

  • SSC will not supply warm-up basketballs.
  • SSC will provide a game ball.

lane violation

  • K-2nd grade – no rule. Taller players will be encouraged to not “camp out” in the lane.
  • 3rd-4th grade – 3 seconds, loosely enforced, verbally assisted
  • 5th-12th grade – 3 seconds enforced

Bench rules

  • Each team may have no more than 2 coaches and only one may stand and/or address officials.
  • Coaches must stay in his/her coaching box at all times.
  • Water and sport drinks only on the bench and only in bottles or closed cups.
  • No soda on the benches.


  • If a coach receives a technical foul, he or she is required to sit the remainder of the game.
  • If a spectator is ejected and refuses to leave when directed to, the team coach could be assessed a technical or the team could be forced to forfeit the game.
  • If a coach is ejected and refuses to leave the court area when directed, the team may be forced to forfeit.
  • “We want situations to be rare. Anyone can get emotional and make poor decisions, but cooler heads need to prevail. Authorities will be used swiftly if needed to ensure the safety of everyone involved.”


  • When registering a team the head coach must be listed as the main contact.
  • Girls Teams must sign up in Girls Divisions. Boys Teams must sign up in Boys Divisions.
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