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Volleyball Rules

What we bring

- Volleyballs

- Team uniforms

What you bring

- Sneakers (barefoot play is fine in outdoor leagues)

Teams

- Games are 4v4, 5v5, or 6v6, determined at the beginning of the season based on total team size. There must be at least 1 woman on the court at all times unless specified at the beginning of the league.

- If 1 female is not present, then teams must play short handed by one player.

- Teams may start a game with one or two fewer players on the court if they do not have enough players present to play.  Teams with 3 fewer players or more will automatically forfeit at scheduled game time.  

- If both teams have enough players present for a larger game, teams may increase the number of players on court for a game.  This is only allowed if agreed upon by both team captains.  

Substitutes

- Please refer to our Sub Policy to find out who is eligible to play as subs for your team.  Captains are expected to read and understand the sub policy.  Teams that do not follow the sub policy, intentionally or unintentionally, risk forfeit.  Do NOT expect the referee or league manager to be responsible for finding subs for you or for stopping you from doing something that violates the sub policy.  If you have questions about the sub policy, please email info@mercerclubsports.com at least 48 hours prior to your game.  

- Teams who add a players from another team within the league as a sub will have a Five point penalty in the first game of their match. The next two games (best two out of three) are played without penalty.

Game & Field Set-up

- Teams play three games of 21 points each.  Teams must win by 2 points, up to a maximum score of 25 (the 25th point wins the game regardless of whether there is a 2 point differential). The team who wins two out of the three games is the winner of the match. If a team wins two games in a row or if games finish earlier than their scheduled time block, the teams are encourage to continue to play for fun!

- Depending on the amount of time left, the referee may announce that the 3rd game will be played to 15 points.  Referee will make this announcement at the start of the third game. 

- Only the team captain should address the referee if there are questions about rules or a dispute about game play. 

- Captains flip a coin prior to the first game.  Winner of the coin toss may either choose which side of the court to begin on or may choose to serve first.  Loser of the coin toss may then decide on the option the winning captain did not pick (i.e. Winning captain chooses to serve first, losing captain decides which side of the court to begin on)

- Teams switch sides after each game.

- First serve alternates between games regardless of who wins.

Rotations

- After each successful side out, players rotate one position clockwise. 

- Bench subs may be positioned in any location around the court and are considered a rotational position.  All players will rotate into the bench positions just as they would any other position on the court.  

- If only one female is present, the female does not enter the sub position but rather rotates directly to the server position with the male subs then waiting an additional rotate before re-entering.

- During a single match, players should remain in a fixed order with the exceptions of player injury or female sub rotation rules described above. 

- Teams may change rotational positions at the start of a new game.

Gameplay

- The ball may touch any part of the body to be returned (hand, arm, head, shoulder, feet, knee, etc)

- Blocks at the net do not count as a hit.  For example, a ball is blocked at the net by player A.  The ball glances off his arm to another player on his team.  His team still has 3 attempts to return the ball (the block did not count as their first hit).  Additionally, player A may touch the ball twice in a row, as his block did not count as the first hit of the series.  

- Balls that touch the ceiling on an indoor court are playable off the ceiling IF they remain on the same side of the net.  If the ball hits the ceiling and crosses the net it will be considered a SIDE OUT.

Gameplay (Casual League Only)

- Teams can designate up to two (2) players who get a second chance to serve if their first serve attempt is unsuccessful.  However, the players who choose this election cannot score on an ace. An ace is a serve which lands in the opponent's court without being touched or is touched by only one receiving player without being returned legally.  Players who opt to serve twice have two service attempts on EVERY point they serve, not just their first point.

- Players cannot score more than 3 ace serves during their rotation as server.  An ace is a serve which lands in the opponent's court without being touched or is touched by only one receiving player without being returned legally.  After 3 aces have been scored, that player continues to serve but is encouraged to present easy to return serves.  If that player serves additional aces the serve is considered a "do over" with no point awarded and no penalty to the server.  The ace count resets after the server loses his serve - each time he rotates to the service position he may score up to 3 aces.



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