San Diego Soccer League
Sand Soccer Tournament Rules  
Tournament Committee or any sponsors of the tournament shall not be responsible for expenses incurred by a team or club if tournament is canceled in whole or in part.  All decisions of the referee are final and binding. The Tournament reserves the right to decide on all matters relative to the tournament and all decisions are final.

In the event of inclement weather, the Tournament Committee may reschedule a match, change division structure, reduce match duration or cancel a match.

Team are allowed 10 roster player spots.  A minimum of three (3) female players shall be included on each coed team roster, one (1) of which shall be on the field at all times during the match.  Players must be listed on the roster by the day of the event to be eligible to play; no additions are permitted for injuries, late arrivals, other commitments, etc. A player who is playing in an Adult bracket ONLY, may compete on more than one team but the Tournament Committee cannot give special scheduling consideration to such circumstances.  Players must be born during or after the year indicated by the oldest age group in their division based on USYSA 2007-08 age groups.

Refunds will be made to all teams not accepted.  To receive a full refund * (* less $100.00 administrative Fee), teams must request withdrawal in writing via e-mail to a week prior to the event. Teams that drop after this date will forfeit their entire entry fee.

In case the tournament is cancelled due to forces outside of the tournament's control, i.e an Act of God, at least $50 of the tournament fee per team will be withheld each refund.

Once the tournament begins it is up to the sole discretion of the Tournament Director and Committee to determine what, if any of the registration fees will be refunded.

Start of Play
Coaches shall ensure that all players are on scene a minimum of fifty (50) minutes before a scheduled match. A team which cannot field three (3) players at the scheduled start time shall forfeit the match. The team forfeiting shall be declared the loser by a score of 3 goals to none.

If no referee is present within ten (10) minutes of the scheduled start time, the match will be rescheduled unless both teams agree to proceed. If the match proceeds, the score shall stand as played without protest.

Tournament Format
U8-U9 play 6v6
All other ages play 5v5

Tournament Standings
Bracket standings to determine quarter-finalist/semi-finalists/finalists will be based on the following :

GOALS - 1PT For Each Goal Scored (Max 3 Pts)
NOTE: 0-0 TIE Will Score Each Team 4 Pts, Each Team will be deducted 1 Pt for every player and/or Coach Red Card Received

Total points ties will be resolved by the following tie-breakers, in order:

1. Head to Head of two teams tied where applicable (disregard if more than two teams tied)
2. Team with the least goals allowed
3. Team with the highest (positive) goal differential
4. If still tied, both teams will proceed to an available field at Field Marshall's discretion and determine winner by penalty kicks (see below format).

Tournament Overtime
Ties in preliminary games will remain a tie.  For quarter-final, semi-final and final matches, ties will be resolved in the following order:

1. One 3 minute "golden goal" overtime in which the winner shall be the first team to score a goal.
2. Penalty Kicks Shootout. First round to consist of five players from each team kicking. Any players may kick.  A minimum of one female player must kick in the first round of all Coed divisions. If tied after first round, kicks shall be taken one for one. Players cannot repeat until all eligible players have kicked.

Forfeits cause gross inconvenience to opponents and disruptions of schedule. Accordingly, forfeiting teams will be precluded from competition in semifinal and final matches, unless specifically authorized by the Tournament Director or Administrator under only most unique and/or emergency circumstances.  Teams in the Adult brackets contemplating the use of players on more than one team must understand that it is possible both teams may be in action at the same time. 

Laws of the Game
(Adapted from the Internat'l Beach Soccer Assoc. And by Beach Soccer Worldwide, Inc, Octagon Koch Tavares/IBSA, Pro Beach Soccer,S.L. and Beach Soccer Company. They were developed to encourage fair play and a spectacular game.)
  1. Objectives of the Game
    The game is provided for leisure, team play, friendship and healthy competition. Fair play is the essence of sand soccer.
  2. The Competition Area, the Goals, and the Ball
    1. Dimensions of the courts: Two sizes will be in use - 25x35 yard courts for most divisions and 30x40 yards for certain adult divisions. Perimeters will be marked with roping affixed to the sand. Substitutes, team delegates, and other spectators shall remain at least six (6) feet from the touchlines.
    2. Penalty Box: A Penalty Box will be delineated by colored discs in the sand at each end of the court 8 yards out (9 yards on 30X40 courts) from, and paralleling, the baselines. The exact position of a penalty kick shall be from the center of these imaginary lines.
    3. Corners and Center of the Court: Corners will be marked with a standard corner flag. A 1-yard quadrant forms the corner area. A cone or flag will be placed on each touch line at midfield.
    4. Goals: Vary in size by division from 6' x 8' to 7' x 21' based on appropriate age group. Goals are aluminum construction and anchored to the sand at the baselines.
    5. Ball: Twelve & younger divisions use a size 4; thirteen & older divisions a size 5; inflation pressure is 7 lbs. The referee shall stop the match and the clock, and replace any ball showing signs of deformity. Dropping the replacement ball at the center of the court restarts the match.
  1. The Game: Start, Duration, and its Rules
    1. Start of Game: The referee will conduct a coin toss, with the winner given the choice of kickoff/court side options. The Kick-off will be made from the center of the court on the referee's whistle. Opposing players must remain at least 5 yards away from the ball. The ball must be passed forward. After a goal, the game restarts from the same point. A goal cannot be scored directly from the kickoff.
    2. Duration of the Game:
      1. All games shall employ three 11 minute periods, separated by two minute intermissions to exchange ends. A referee's whistle ends each period. After the second period, the referee shall conduct a coin toss with same options as for the Game Start. Should the referee stop time for injury or if a team is wasting time, he/she may add extra time at the end of a period.
    3. How to Win: See tie breaker information in "Tournament Standings" section above.
    4. Scoring a Goal: A goal shall be scored when the ball entirely crosses over the goal line in the air or on the ground between the goal posts and under the crossbar.
    5. Out of Play: The ball is considered out of play when ALL of the ball crosses the goal line or touch line.
    6. The Pass-Back Rule: The goalkeeper shall not be allowed to touch the ball with his/her hands or arms when a ball is returned to him/her by a teammate. This includes playing the ball from an inbounds pass to the goalkeeper without the ball having touched an opponent. Infraction of the pass-back rule results in the opposing team being awarded a free kick from the center of the court.
    7. Offsides: There are no offsides.
  1. Team Formation
    1. Number of Players: The game is played by two teams of (5)five players on each team with the exception of Youth U8 & U9 divisions, which will play six (6) players per side. One of the players on the court for each team shall be the goalkeeper. Both teams must have a minimum of three players on the field to start the match. For teams in the Coed division, a minimum of three (3) female players shall be included on each coed team roster, one (1) of which shall be on the field at all times during the match.  If no female is available due to injury, the team must play down a player.
    2. Substitutions: There are no limits on substitutions. The substitute can only enter the court after a player that is being substituted for has left the court at the referee's position on the halfway line.
    3. Entering the Court: If a player breaks Rule 4.2 and enters the court before a teammate has left, he/she will receive a yellow card.
    4. Substitute Infraction: Restart for violation of Rule 4.2 shall be direct free kick from the center of the court.
    5. Minimum Number of Players: The minimum number of players on the court is three (3). The team that remains with less than three (3) players will be declared the loser of that game, regardless of the score at the time that the game was stopped. In this case, the score of the game, for goal average effect, will be 3 - 0 for the winning team.
    6. Goalkeeper replacement: A goalkeeper may substitute for a field player, after a shirt change. Similarly, a field player may be substituted for a goalkeeper. Such substitutions may only be made during breaks between periods or after a stoppage in play, and after referee notification.
    7. Goalkeeper ball handling: When the goalkeeper makes a save, or otherwise receives the ball from an in-play situation, he/she can distribute the ball by use of the feet or rolling the ball underhand, side armed, or overhand. A goal CANNOT be scored directly from this type of goalkeeper distribution.
  1. Referees:
    1. Referees: The game shall be officiated by a referee located on the field or at the halfway line at the touch line. Their decisions are final. The referee will serve as timekeeper and scorekeeper. The Tournament Committee shall determine, before the game, or during play, if conditions are suitable for safe play. Certain adult divisions may employ two or three referees on the field.


  1. Player Equipment
    1. Footwear: It is strictly forbidden to wear any kind of footwear other than what is authorized. Authorized footwear includes bare feet, socks taped up and/or elastic ankle and/or foot wraps.
    2. Uniforms: Uniforms shall consist of shirts of the same color. Playing vests are appropriate. Goalkeepers shall wear a uniform of contrasting color with other players and the referee. Use of plastic goggles for eye protection is allowed.
  1. Fouls and Infractions
    1. Fouls: If any player commits any of the below infractions, there will be a DIRECT FREE KICK taken from the spot of the infringement. The player who is faulted must take the free kick unless seriously injured and, in such case, his/her substitute shall execute the shot. The referee shall allow play to continue when a team that has suffered the foul will benefit from such advantage, and shall penalize the original offense if the anticipated advantage does not ensue at that time. It is considered a foul, and a Direct Kick is awarded to the opposing team, if a player commits any of the following offenses in a manner considered by the referee to be careless, reckless or using excessive force:
      1. Kick or trip an opponent
      2. Grab, hold, push, charge or intentionally obstruct an opponent
      3. Touch the ball intentionally with the hand or arm. This does not apply to the goalkeeper in his/her own area, or if there is no intention of touching the ball with hand or arm.
      4. Slide tackle, or jump, at an opponent
      5. Playing in a dangerous manner

Any of these infractions committed by the defending team in the penalty area will be punished by a Penalty Kick.

    1. Yellow Cards: The referee shall show a yellow card when a player:
      1. Commits a serious foul in the interpretation of the referee
      2. Shows by act or word, disagreement with the referee's decision
      3. Shows lack of sportsmanship
      4. Commits an infraction during a free kick or during a kickoff
      5. Enters the court during a substitution before the player being replaced has entirely left the court or enters from an incorrect position.
    2. Red Cards: the referee shall show a Red Card when a player:
      1. Receives a second yellow card in one game
      2. Intentionally denies with a foul an obvious goal scoring opportunity to an opponent
      3. Is guilty of serious foul play
      4. Is guilty of violent conduct
      5. Uses offensive, insulting or abusive language The player shall be sent off the field without being able to reenter the match and shall also be denied participation in the subsequent match, including the final round of competition (quarters, semi's or finals).
    3. Unsportsmanlike Behavior off the Court: If a substitute player, coach or team delegate commits a serious aggression, or offends any spectator or participant of the game (i.e., the referee, players, members of the Tournament Committee), the referee shall show him/her the Red Card. He/she shall be sent out of the competition area. The individual's name and reason for suspension will be reported to the Tournament Committee for possible additional sanctions. When play is stopped for unsportsmanlike behavior, restart will be by a direct free kick at the center of the field.
  1. Free Kick
    1. Free Kick: The referee will award a Direct Free Kick (from which a goal can be scored directly against the defending side) where a foul has been committed. The player who received the infraction must take the free kick. Opponents will approach no closer than 5 yds.
    2. Positioning of Players During Free Kicks (Refer to Diagram) There will be no walls and opposing players must remain at least five (5) yards away from the kicker. If the infraction is committed in the kicking team's DEFENSIVE END of the court, an imaginary "NO MAN'S LAND" sector will be established from the point of the foul to each opponent's goal post. Players of BOTH teams will remain outside of this zone until the Free Kick is taken. If the infraction is committed in the kicking team's OFFENSIVE END of the court, players of BOTH teams must position themselves behind, or on the same line, as the ball placed at the point where the foul was committed. NOTE: The above concept is meant to discourage fouls in the defensive end by awarding basically undefended (except for goalkeeper) direct free kicks. When taking a Free Kick, Corner Kick, or In-Bounds Kick, a player may place the ball on the spot of the foul and make a small mound to elevate the ball's position.
    3. Free Kick Start: A player who takes a Free Kick, or puts the ball in play, may not touch the ball twice consecutively. Breaking this rule will be punished with a Direct Free Kick at the point of infraction.
    4. Infractions During Free Kicks: If any irregularity occurs when a Free Kick is being taken, the following will apply:
      1. If the irregularity is committed by the team taking the free kick and the goal is scored, the shot will be repeated.
      2. If the irregularity is committed by the infringing team, the free kick will be repeated unless a goal was scored, in which case the goal will stand.
    5. Injury or Interference Restart: Indirect free kick from the center of the field by team in possession at time of stoppage, or restart as applicable, ie. ball out of touch.


  1. Penalty Kicks
    1. Penalty Kick: A penalty shot will be given when a foul is committed by an opponent inside the penalty box of the infringing player. The penalty shot must be taken by the player that suffered the infraction, and is taken from a point in the center of the goal on the penalty box line.
    2. Fluid Movement: The player who takes the penalty kick must do it in a continuous movement.
    3. Goalkeeper Position: When defending a penalty kick, the goalkeeper must position him/herself and can only move on the goal line between both goal posts.
    4. Infractions During Penalty Kicks: If an irregularity is committed by the team taking the penalty kick and the goal is scored, the shot will be repeated. If an irregularity is committed by the infringing team, the penalty kick will be repeated, unless a goal was scored, in which case the goal will stand.
  1. Goalkeeper Restart of Game (Goal Kicks)
    1. Restart: A goal kick will be awarded when a player of the attacking team plays or deflects the ball over the base line, excluding the goal itself. The goalkeeper shall restart play from anywhere in the penalty area with hands only and has five (5) seconds to do so, from the moment he /she stands and has control of the ball. A goal cannot be scored directly from the restart. In such case, the other goalkeeper shall restart play. If the goalkeeper delays the game, the opposing team shall be awarded a free kick from the center of the court.
    2. Goalkeeper Scoring: A goalkeeper cannot score by directly throwing the ball with their hands into the goal of the opposing team. The goalkeeper cannot score if he/she kicks the ball in the air (volley) before it touches the ground after releasing it from their hands. In either event, the opposing team is awarded a goal kick. The goalkeeper can score if he/she puts the ball down on the ground and controls it with their feet during the normal course of play (not during restarts, as stated in Rule 10.1.)


  1. Corner Kick
    1. Corner Kick: Shall be given when a player of the defensive team touches the ball out of bounds through the base line. The corner kick must be taken with the feet. The place where the corner is taken must be within one (1) yard of the Corner Flag. A goal may be scored directly off a corner kick. Opposing players may not approach the player taking the kick closer than five (5) yards. The player executing the kick has 5 seconds to do so after gaining possession of the ball. If the player infringes on his 5 seconds, the opponent goalkeeper shall restart play.
  1. Ball In/Out of Play (Touch Lines)
Out of Bounds: A ball is considered out of play when ALL of the ball crosses over the touch line. Restart will be by standard throw-in at the point of infraction. Opposing players may approach no closer than five (5) yards. A goal cannot be scored off a Throw-In . The player shall have 5 seconds to inbound the ball. By infringing this rule, possession will be reversed to the opposing team.

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Tournament hosted by:
California Soccer League