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Gorham Youth Lacrosse

Play Up Policy

It is the policy of the Gorham Youth Lacrosse Association that each registered player will play in his/her age level as set forth by GYLA and Maine Youth Lacrosse. However, individual requests to play-up may be considered by a Select Committee of our coaches (minimum of 3 coaches), and reviewed on a case by case basis. The GYLA recognizes that in certain situations it may be appropriate and/or beneficial to a player’s development to play-up to the next age level. The Committee will consider and evaluate a player’s development potential in his/her actual age level versus potential for success in an older age level. The Committee will also consider the fine balance between the best interest of a player requesting to play-up and the GYLA teams and players in both their actual age level, as well as older level.

There is an increased risk of injury for participants playing outside of their actual age classification. However, GYLA allows the movement in certain situations if specific guidelines are followed:

A player will not be permitted to move up more than one division and it is very rare that we approve such cases.

Only requests submitted in writing by the participant’s parents or legal guardians will be considered. This request must be submitted and received by the President of GYLA at least 14 days prior to request for evaluation.

A player requesting an opportunity to play-up must also play for his/her actual age level team. For example, a 2nd grade player who is granted a play-up request to the 3rd/4th grade division, must register and participate with both K/1/2 and 3rd/4th level team practices. Playing up is primarily for skills and additional game experience.

The Committee will evaluate each request. Criteria for allowing a player to play-up will be based on the evaluation of the player’s skill and ability to contribute to the older team, the player’s emotional and physical maturity level compared to the older team’s players, physical size and number of players at each level. The play-up player must be projected to be a contributing player on the older team. If the player is not projected to be a contributing player on the older team, then it is highly questionable whether playing up is truly in the best interest of that player or the team.

Allowing players to play-up from a non-checking division to a checking division represents the greatest risk and will therefore receive additional scrutiny.

The Committee decision is final.

Upon request, the participant’s parent(s)/guardian must sign the GYLA Risk Acknowledgement and Liability Waiver, acknowledging the risks associated with playing outside of a player’s actual age classification.

Not Always Easy to Step Up to the Challenge