Volleyball Rules



Credit card payments are accepted on our encrypted, secure site. Individual payments or corporate sponsors are welcome. For sponsored teams, any fees paid by an individual for a team may be refunded upon an equal payment provided by a third party.  Payments cover permitting, equipment, officiating, management, credit card fees, and general insurance costs.  75% of team payments must be paid online to be put on the schedule.  All remaining payments are due prior to each team's 1st game.  Cash and check will be accepted prior to each team's 1st game.  Free agents must register and pay prior to being assigned to a team.

Operation/Refund Policy
SFCS leagues are viable with a minimum of 4 teams per league. Pre-season cancellation fees are 30% of total fees due and cancellation MUST be requested IN WRITING via fax, email, or USPS mail at least three (3) business days (Monday - Friday) prior to the start of the league.  There are no refunds for any league already started or ready to start within three (3) business days. If a league does not become viable, full refunds will be given if team does not want, or cannot, be placed in another SFCS league. SFCS reserves the right to change specific league locations and operating times as necessary due to any required scheduling changes either on a weekly or seasonal basis. SFCS also reserves the right to shorten any league due to multiple weather cancellations or unforeseen circumstances without any refund or credits provided.  Failure to abide by SFCS rules and regulations will result in forfeiture of league/event participation and void any refunds.

Start/end dates and game times are posted online.  Start/end dates and game times are subject to change based on field availability, rainouts, and unforeseen circumstances, which may arise. Schedules are posted after registration is closed and all payments have been received.  Schedule requests must come from team captains, and must be submitted in writing at least three [3] business days prior to the start of Week 1 games.  SFCS reserves the right to schedule any team for any of the advertised dates and game times posted on the league homepage.  Bye requests will likely result in teams playing doubleheaders before or after their week off.

The following holidays will be automatic byes for all leagues
New Years Day (Jan. 1)
Memorial Day Weekend (Friday-Monday)
Fourth of July (July 3 & 4)â?¨Labor Day Weekend (Friday-Monday)
Thanksgiving Weekend (Wednesday-Sunday)
Christmas Eve through New Years Eve (Dec. 23 - Dec. 31)

Unless parks/venues are closed, games will be scheduled for the following holidays unless a majority of teams request a bye prior to Week 1: MLK Weekend, Valentine's Day, Easter Sunday, St. Patrick's Day, Cinco De Mayo, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Columbus Day, Halloween, & Veteran's Day.

All participants must be in good health to participate.  SFCS reserves the right to deny participation to any individual or team without explanation. Every participant must follow SFCS rules and regulations. All participants of each league/tournament/event/season must accept an online waiver of liability to participate. Failure or refusal to waive liability will result in the denial of participation for that individual and will void any refund. All SFCS leagues and social events have a minimum age requirement of 21 years old.
Every player must preregister online, accept the league waiver, prepay in full (if applicable), wear a SFCS-issued uniform, and provide a photo ID before playoff games. Registration will be open up to the last day of the regular season.  Players will not be accepted after registration has closed.  Every player is limited to one roster per league per season.

Uniform & Equipment
In leagues which provide uniforms, every player must wear a SFCS uniform on the court
.  Team captains can submit color preferences in writing.  If one or more players do not bring their uniform on a given week, they may exchange shirts on the sideline in order to participate.  Players cannot wear uniforms inside-out.  Additional uniforms may be purchased for $10 each. Teams must give SFCS staff advance notice if they wish to purchase/acquire additional uniforms.  If a team is shorthanded and picks up other league members, those other league members must wear their own team uniform.  Watches, jewelry, and other items deemed dangerous are prohibited while participating. 

Standings/Rankings are based on 3 points for a win, 1 point for a tie, 0 points for a loss, and -1 point for a forfeit. In the event that two or more teams have equal points at the end of the regular season, the first tiebreaker will be head-to-head competition.  The second tiebreaker will be season games differential (difference of games won and lost).

Eligibility protests must be made before the game begins, or immediately following the entrance of a protested player. During a game, a verbal protest must be made to an official or staff member once play ceases and before the next live ball situation.  Using vulgar/abusive language will invalidate a captain's protest. Protesting a judgment call is prohibited.  If the official or staff member finds the protest valid, they will overturn the call.  If the protested call is not overturned, the team captain must submit a written protest via email to a SFCS Director within 24 hours of the protested game.  Captains must protest a score within 24 hours of its posting.

Every official strives for perfection, and player feedback is essential in making improvements.  However, during or immediately after a game is not an ideal time to provide feedback to an official.  Rather, we encourage all players (not just captains) to submit written evaluations of league officials to SFCS Directors.

Once both teams have at least 2 players, the match will begin.  To play a legal match, a team must have at least 3 players (at least 1 female) on the court 10 minutes past the scheduled start time.  A scrimmage will take place if the match results in a forfeit.  A team using an ineligible/suspended player forfeits all matches that the player participates in. Teams knowingly using such a player may face additional sanctions.  Two forfeits by any team during a single season may result in expulsion from the league with no registration fees refunded to the team or its players.

Game Stoppage
Call the Rainline (800.497.1852 ext. 4) for weather updates.  In the case of inclement weather, darkness, serious injury, or other harmful conditions, any match in which one teams has 2 wins and a lead in the postponed game of at least 2 points will constitute a legal match. The team with 2 wins and a lead of at least 2 points at the time of postponement will be declared the winner. 

Alcohol Policy
Alcohol is prohibited at all city and county parks.  Players and spectators must refrain from carrying alcohol around the courts, bleachers, or parking lots.  Violations for the alcohol policy will result in a warning followed by an ejection and possible suspension. 

Game Rules
1. Game Length-
There is a 55-minute time limit on all matches. Matches will consist of a best 3-of-5 game series. The first three games will be played to 21 (rally scoring, win by at least 2). If a 4th game is required, it will be played to 21 (rally scoring, win by at least 2). If a 5th game is required, it will be played to 15 (rally scoring, win by at least 2).  If time expires during the 5th game, the team with the lead by at least 2 will be declared the winner.

2. Equipment- Teams may use the ball(s) provided by staff or any ball both opponents agree to use.  Nets and lines are provided by park/venue staff.  Players must play barefoot or in socks.  Cleats, sandals, tennis shoes, and crocs are prohibited.

3. Teams- Teams consist of four players (2 men & 2 women) on the court at once. Three players (including 1 woman) are required to start and continue a match without forfeit.  The team fee covers 8 players.  Additional players pay $10.

4. Players- Every player must preregister and accept the league waiver prior to participation. Every player must provide a photo ID before each playoff game.  Only an opposing captain or SFCS staff member may waive this requirement.

5. Pre-Game- The home team will have choice of serve or side.  The visiting team has the remaining choice. Teams will switch sides and possession in subsequent games.

6. Positions-
At the time of service, all players (except the server) must be inside the boundaries of the court. Players do not have to play in set positions or rotate.  Players may sub in during any dead ball, so long as they adhere to the service order.

7. Service- Players must maintain the same service order throughout the match.  Every player on the court must be in the service order.  A team can insert a new player into their service order at any time.  A legal serve will take place from behind the team’s end line anywhere inside the sidelines. The serving player must remain behind the end line until the ball has been served. If player serves in the air, he/she can land on or inside the line. A legal serve must cross the net between the poles. A legal serve can touch the net on the way over. An opponent cannot leave the ground to attack a serve. However, an opponent can leave the ground to pass a serve.

8. Net Play-
A ball must cross over the net between the poles (hitting the pole is out of bounds). Player contact with the net/pole is prohibited. A player may block the ball beyond/over the net provided that he/she does not interfere with opponent’s play. A player may cross under the net provided he/she does not interfere with opponent’s play.

9. Co-Ed Play- A maximum of 2 men may play on the court at any given time.  Men can substitute for women provided that the sub does not violate the 2-men maximum.  If a ball is touched more than once on a side, at least one of the touches must be made by a woman.  Both captains may agree to waive this rule prior to the start of the 1st game.

10. Volley- A team may touch the ball a maximum of 3 times before sending the ball over the net.  Players may touch the ball with their feet, knees, and head.  Consecutive touches by one player is prohibited.

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