Rules and Regulations
About NWBSA, nwbsa.org
- Montvale (3rd-8th grades) is one of 23 member towns that make up the Northwest Bergen Soccer Association.
- We participate in league play each fall against other NWBSA towns, which includes Allendale, Fair Lawn, Franklin Lakes, Glen Rock, Hasbrouck Heights, Hawthorne, Ho-Ho-Kus/Saddle River, Mahwah, Maywood, Midland Park, North Haledon, Oakland, Paramus, Park Ridge, Ramsey, Ridgewood, Rochelle Park, Upper Saddle River, Waldwick, Woodcliff Lake, Wood-Ridge and Wyckoff.
- NWBSA is an all-volunteer organization dedicated to the support and encouragement of a rich recreational experience for member players and parents.
- As such, NWBSA is mandated to assure adequate knowledge of the rules of safe & fair play; to conduct annual referee certification; to maintain & administer its rules & regulations; and to produce a fair & balanced schedule of at least ten games each season.
- The NWBSA Board, and local town reps, meet nine times a year for this purpose. We encourage parents to support the program by volunteering to coach, assist, or otherwise participate at the local town or NWBSA Board level.
- Montvale’s Bob Cudequest is President of the NWBSA: email@example.com, 201-312-5676
Division Eligibility (July 31 DOB Cutoff)
Your division is based on birth date — NOT grade. Kids can’t “play down” because it causes liability issues and throws off competitive balance. (But kids can “play up” if they are considered “young” for their grade (born after July 31) and want to play with their grade.) All 23 NWBSA towns follow these cutoffs…
- “Pre-K Kickers,” 3-year olds: born between 8/1/15 and 7/31/16
- “Pre-K Kickers,” 4-year olds: born between 8/1/14 and 7/31/15
- “Kinder-Kickers”: born between 8/1/13 and 7/31/14
- Division 6 (~1st/2nd grade): born between 8/1/11 and 7/31/13
- Division 5 (~3rd/4th grade): born between 8/1/09 and 7/31/11
- Division 4 (~5th/6th grade): born between 8/1/07 and 7/31/09
- Division 3 (~7th/8th grade): born between 8/1/05 and 7/31/07
Full NWBSA Rules of Competition (for 3rd-8th grades) can be found at http://nwbsa.org/rules.cfm. We also follow the rules according to The International Football Association Board (IFAB), which can be found at http://www.theifab.com/home (But, where applicable, NWBSA Rules override IFAB Rules — e.g., no slide tackles.) Some rule highlights…
- See the Safety and Competitive Balance sections above.
- Excessive scoring is an issue we take very seriously. It is very poor sportsmanship and not fun for either team. For 3rd-8th grades, if a team wins by more than seven goals, the coach will be fined $200 and suspended. Although the threshold is seven, de facto decorum is to not win by more than five. If up by five, the coach must discreetly take a player off the field, and can’t put the player back on until the goal differential is back down to three.
- For 1st/2nd grades, a team can’t win by more than three goals. 1st/2nd grade soccer is mostly instructional (we even allow on-field coaching at games). There are generally only two fouls called: 1) Blatant hand ball (if a player picks up or catches the ball). 2) Blatant trips or kicks. Lifting the back foot with a throw-in is called but players get many re-dos. Off-sides is not called. Every foul is an indirect kick; there are no penalty kicks.
- Heading the ball is not allowed until 7th grade. Slide tackling is not allowed for any grade.
- Ball size: 1st/2nd grade use #3; 3rd-6th #4; 7th/8th #5.
- 1st-4th grades games are 8v8 on a “small-sized” field (Fieldstone: 60 x 40yds). 5th-6th grade games are 9v9 on a “mid-sized” field (80 x 50yds). 7th-8th grade games are 11v11 on a “regulation-sized” field (100 x 60yds). Other town fields may vary in size.
- Game Length: 1st/2nd grade, 48 min (12 min quarters); 3rd/4th, 60 min (15 min quarters); 5th-6th, 68 min (17 min quarters); 7th-8th, 80 min (20 min quarters). Rec soccer is played in quarters in order to help better rest the players, and to help the substitution process.
- We follow a “Right To Play” policy: every player is guaranteed to play at least half a game (unless parent or player request less). Players play all positions, including goalie (but will never be forced to play goalie if afraid to do so).
- Everyone must arrive at least 30 min prior to game time. Refs check in players and coaches 15 min prior.
- For games, players must wear their MAL-issued jersey (tucked in), and black socks/shorts. No exceptions (we get fined otherwise).
- Proper cold-weather attire: thermals, sweat pants/shirts, leggings, etc. are allowed. BUT uniform shorts, socks and jerseys must be worn on the outside. (Exception: 1st/2nd graders can wear sweats etc. over their shorts/socks.) No hoods or drawstrings are allowed. Players may wear soft hats (but no drawstrings), soft ear bands and soft gloves.
- Soccer is generally played in the rain. If it is a long, soaking rain, there is a chance that grass-field games get cancelled (so as not to destroy the field) but it is unlikely that turf games will.