USAWP Rules Modifications for 12&Under and 10&Under

Most of you are aware that rule modifications for the 10 & Under and 12 & Under age groups were adopted in January at the USAWP Annual Assembly. Many of you have been successfully coaching and playing with this new subset of rules and the transition to these minor changes seems to be going smoothly. These rules are currently in effect and will be used for the 2015 National Junior Olympics and all NJO Qualifying Tournaments. Below is more information as well as a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to help clarify the rules for athletes, coaches and parents. You can also find these FAQs on the USA Water Polo Website at: 10U and 12U Rules FAQs

USA Water Polo
FAQs – 10u & 12u Age Division Rule Modifications
New Rules:
1. No direct shot after foul outside of 5 meters.
2. Teams must play a press defense in their own defensive half of the field of play.
3. On an exclusion foul there is no specific time a player has to serve in the exclusion area. Athlete swims to re-entry area and returns to field of play immediately.
Frequently Asked Questions
1 – Where do I find information on these new rules?
Information regarding all USAWP playing rules can be found online on the USA Water Polo Website under resources/rules & ethics.
A summary of the 10U and 12U rule modifications can be found online as well.
2 – Can athletes still “crash” or “drop” and help with two-meter defense?
Once the ball is the air, athletes are free to “crash” “drop” or play help defense on any athlete in the pool. Once the ball is in clear offensive possession, athletes must press players within the 9-meter cone.
3 – Can athletes Foul and Drop?
Athletes can use the “Foul and Drop” defensive tactic but must re-press their player once the ball is put in play.
4 – If two athletes on the perimeter are in close proximity, can the defensive player guarding the player without the ball attempt to steal the ball from near by offensive player?
If athletes are within one stroke or movement to the ball they may attempt to help and steal the ball. Athletes are expected to play press defensive. If defense swims away from athlete they are guarding to steal the ball, press defense is broken and foul will be called.
5 – What happens if a coach calls a Timeout after their team earns an exclusion?
Both teams return to play following the timeout at even-strength.
6 – What about Double Exclusions? What happens then?
Both excluded players swim immediately to the re-entry area prior to returning to the field of play.
7 – When will the new goal size for 12 and under competitions be mandatory?
The new goal size, currently being used for all USAWP 10U competition, is 2 meters by .75 meters will be required for 12U competition beginning January 1st, 2017.
USAWP is currently working with manufacturers to provide an excellent product at a fair price.
8 – When will USA Water Polo begin using new 12&U goal for competitions?
USAWP will begin using the smaller goal for National Championships in fall 2015 at The 12& Under Rocktober Classic. Junior Olympics in 2016 will also use the new goal size for the 12&U division
9 – What happens when an athlete leaves their defensive position to go to offense early? AKA: “Cherry-Picking”
All athletes on offense inside of the 9-meter cone must be pressed by the defense. If the defensive leaves early to “cherry-pick” they are no longer pressing and should be excluded by the official.
10 – Will athletes be punished for being lost or out of position on defense?
The referee’s are being instructed to be more involved as teachers of the game. For first offense of a rule during a game, the referee will do his/her best to remove the ball from the field of play and explain the rule. This is a considered a warning for both teams. If an athlete is confused, lost or tired during the course of a game and is not pressing while on defense, the referee will encourage the athlete to get into proper positioning. The spirit of the defensive rule is to take away deliberate zone defense and double- teaming away from the ball.

Texas Age Group State Water Polo Championships Schedule

Location: UT Swim Center, Austin, TX.

Sunday, May 3rd: Pool #1 – South Pool (Left)
7:30 Pool Opens for warm up
8:00 (12U1) Viper Pigeon Boys v. Thunder Silver
8:45 (12U3) Thunder Black v. Austin
9:30 (14U1) Thunder Black v. Longhorn White
10:15 (14U3) St Marks v. Viper Pigeons-Fort Bend
11:00 (12U5) Los 12U1 v. Los 12U2 (5th-8th Semi)
11:45 (12U7) Win 12U1 v. Win 12U2 (1st-4th Semi)
12:30 (14U5) Los 14U1 v. Los 14U2 (5th-8th Semi)
1:15 (14U7) Win 14U1 v. Win 14U2 (1st-4th Semi)
2:00 (14UG1) Viper Pigeons v. Thunder (1st/2nd Place)
2:45 (12U9) Win 12U5 v. Los 12U6 (5th/6th Place)
3:30 (12U11) Win 12U7 v. Win 12U8 (1st/2nd Place)
4:15 (14U9) Win 14U5 v. Win 14U6 (5th/6th Place)
5:00 (14U11) Win 14U7 v. Win 14U8 (1st/2nd Place)

Sunday, May 3rd: Pool #2 – North Pool (Right)
7:30 Pool Opens for warm up
8:00 (12U2) St Marks v. Longhorn
8:45 (12U4) San Antonio v. Viper Pigeon Girls
9:30 (14U2) Viper Pigeons Black v. San Antonio
10:15 (14U4) Longhorn Orange v. Thunder Silver
11:00 (12U6) Los 12U3 v. Los 12U4 (5th-8th Semi)
11:45 (12U8) Win 12U3 v. Win 12U4 (1st-4th Semi)
12:30 (14U6) Los 14U3 v. Los 14U4 (5th-8th Semi)
1:15 (14U8) Win 14U3 v. Win 14U4 (1st-4th Semi)
2:00 No Game
2:45 (12U10) Los 12U5 v. Los 12U6 (7th/8th Place)
3:30 (12U12) Los 12U7 v. Los 12U8 (3rd/4th Place)
4:15 (14U10) Los 14U5 v. Los 14U6 (7th/8th Place)
5:00 (14U12) Los 14U7 v. Los 14U8 (3rd/4th Place)

TISCA High School Regionals Results

Sixteen teams each of boys and girls high schools from four regions, qualified this weekend for the TISCA Texas State Water Polo Championships to be held at UT Austin on May 1-2, 2015. State qualifiers for 2015 are liste below. More information can be found at:

Region 1 Girls (North Texas):
1. Southlake Carroll
2. Flower Mound
3. Rockwall
4. Denton Guyer
MVP: Megan Seeman, Flower Mound
Coach of Year: Joey Yglesias, Southlake Carroll

Region 1 Boys:
1. St. Marks
2. Flower Mound
3. Southlake Carroll
4. Denton Ryan
MVP: Austin Pyrch, Denton Ryan
Coach of Year: Mihai Oprea, St. Marks

Region 2 Girls (East Houston):
1. Houston Cypress Creek
2. Houston Cy-Fair
3. The Woodlands
4. Houston Jersey Village
MVP: Heather Clark, The Woodlands
Coach of Year: Jeff Chandler, Houston Cypress Creek

Region 2 Boys:
1. The Woodlands
2. Houston Jersey Village
3. Houston Lamar
4. Houston Westside
MVP: Daniel LaVerne, The Woodlands
Coach of Year: Stuart Webb, Jersey Village

Region 3 Girls (South Houston):
1. Baytown Sterling
2. Houston Clear Lake
3. Houston Clear Falls
4. Houston Clear Springs
Coach of Year:

Region 3 Boys:
1. Houston Clear Lake
2. Houston Clear Creek
3. Brazoswood
4. Houston Clear Brook
Coach of Year:

Region 4 Girls (West):
1. Austin Anderson
2. Round Rock
3. Austin Cedar Ridge
4. Austin McNeil
Coach of Year:

Region 4 Boys:
1. Austin Anderson
2. Waco Midway
3. Round Rock
4. San Antonio Alamo Heights
Coach of Year:

Longhorn Invite Results

12U Division

Longhorn Orange 11 v Austin 3
Longhorn Orange 4  v San Antonio 25
Longhorn White  9   v Austin 7
Austin                    1   v Viper Pigeon 18
San Antonio          22 v Thunder 9
Thunder                 2  v Viper Pigeon 19
Longhorn White   2 v  San Antonio  17
Longhorn White   7 v Viper Pigeon  19
Longhorn Orange 7 v Thunder 14

14U Division
Longhorn Orange 15 v San Antonio 3
Longhorn White   5   v  San Antonio 16
Longhorn Orange 16 v Viper Pigeon 3
Longhorn Orange 10 v Longhorn White 1
Thunder                 15 v Viper Pigeon 2
San Antonio          12  v  Viper Pigeon 12
Longhorn White   1   v Thunder 15
Longhorn Orange  2  v Thunder 9

2015 TAGS Information

Attached is the information (see link at bottom) for the Texas Age Group State Water Polo Championship (TAGS, 8th/6th Grade & younger) which will be on Sunday, May 3rd at the UT Swim Center-Austin, TX. Please note this is an UPDATED DATE for the tournament from previous schedules. The tournament will again be a one day event on the Sunday immediately after the high school state champs at the same location (UT Swim Center). For 2015, there will be an 8th Grade & younger Girls/14U Division added to the event. The tournament will be hosted by the Southwest Zone of USA Water Polo and Longhorn Aquatics. Games will begin no earlier than 8:00 am on Sunday, May 3rd and end no later than 5:00 pm. All teams are guaranteed three games. A hospitality room will be set up at the event for all coaches and officials. Awards will be given out to the teams placing 1st/2nd in each division. On May 1-2, the TISCA Water Polo High School State Championships will be competed at the same location. Come early and watch the games on Saturday and play on Sunday.

There will be three divisions for the TAGS Water Polo Championship: 8th Grade & Younger Boys-Coed/14U, 8th Grade & Younger Girls/14U, and 6th Grade & Younger Coed/12U. Athletes must meet both the grade and age eligibility in order to compete. The age will be defined as the age of the athlete on May 3rd. This will be a USA Water Polo sanctioned event using USA Water Polo rules & regulations. All athletes MUST be USA Water Polo Seasonal, Gold or Silver members to compete in this event. All teams must have a USA Water Polo registered coach on deck for all games. Each club team must be a currently registered USA Water Polo Club or affiliated with a current USA Water Polo Club in order to compete.

Please email your commitment to play in the TAGS Water Polo Championship by Wednesday, April 22nd to Please include specific team names and divisions. If you know your team will be playing, please email ASAP. Make checks payable to Southwest Water Polo. Please mail payments to Joe Linehan, 7750 North Macarthur Blvd, #120-275, Irving, TX 75063 OR bring with you to the pool on May 3rd. Schedules will be finalized and sent via email on Sunday, April 26th.

Southwest Zone Championship and National Junior Olympics Information: Next week, I will be sending out the Southwest Zone Qualification procedures for the USA Water Polo National Junior Olympics and the tournament information for the Southwest Zone Championships on June 12-14 in Houston, TX at Strake Jesuit Prep. If you have specific questions, please call or email.