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The WFL will use NFHS Softball Rules.

The following points are emphasized:

  • Run rules will be applied to all games when a team has a lead of 12 runs after 3 innings, 10 runs after 4 innings, or 8 runs after 5 innings.

  • A team may begin and play a game with 8 players but an “automatic out” shall be scored each time the ninth spot in the lineup comes up to bat. If a team starts with 8 players and has a player ejected, the game will be forfeited.

  • Pitchers may opt to use either the "step back" or the "start back" positions before the pitch.

  • The 12U pitching rubber will be set at 40 feet.

  • Teams must supply 2 “playable” NFHS Softball approved balls for each of their home games.


There will be additional adaptations including:

  • Teams will be allowed to use a continuous batting order including up to as many girls as that team has on its roster.

  • Teams will be allowed to make free defensive substitutions as long as the initial batting order does not change.

  • In the case that a team is bating more than 9 batters has a player who cannot continue due to injury, the team shall be allowed to 'collapse" it's lineup by skipping the injured batter's turn at bat without penalty.  When a vacated spot in the lineup is created due to a player ejection, an automatic out shall be charged when the player's turn at bat comes up. When a team has 8 or fewer batters in it's lineup, an out shall be called when the last vacated batter's spot comes up in the lineup.

  • Teams may use a courtesy runner for the pitcher or catcher currently in the game. The courtesy runner shall be the player who made the most recent out who isn't also the pitcher or catcher. Courtesy runners are NOT required.

  • For 12U, 14U, and 16/18U, there will be no new inning started after 75 minutes, and any game will “drop dead” after 90 minutes. The final score shall be recorded as whatever the score was when the drop dead limit was reached even if one team was afforded more chances to bat than the other.

  • Metal cleats will be allowed for 14U and older. Teams are advised to have non-metal cleats available as some fields do not allow

  • Coaches may choose which on-deck circle should be used by their players. Player safety should always be the primary concern.

  • While the WFL will allow coaches to make decisions about players who are older than the stated age limit, coaches are responsible to maintain competitive balance. Any grievances or inquiries should be routed toward the league director. It is not appropriate to seek resolution of disputes about any player’s age during games.

  • Both teams must confirm that scores have been submitted by noon on the day following the games. The standings on the website cannot be updated without this information.

  • Every team is expected to field a full team on each of their scheduled game dates. If there is not a full team (of at least 8 players to start a game) at the start of the game, the umpires will be sent home, and the team without enough players will be asked to pay $100 to cover field costs and umpire’s fees for that date.

  • Only players and coaches who have signed waivers are eligible to participate in league games. Any participant who has not signed a waiver is restricted from participating in any league activities.

  • Remember that this league was founded in order to provide girls with the opportunity to have a fun summer learning to hone their softball skills. Let’s keep it fun!

Special 10U Rules

  • 10U games will be played with an 11", NFHS Softball Approved softball.

  • The pitching rubber will be set at 35 feet.

  • Scoring Limit: In every inning other than the final inning of the game, the inning shall end when the defensive team records the third out of the inning or when the offensive team scores the 5th run of the inning. Even if the last offensive play could have resulted in multiple runs scoring, bringing the total runs scored for the inning above 5 runs, only the first 5 runs scored in an inning will count.

  • Special 10U "1 NEW INNING RULE": In 10U games, EXACTLY 1 NEW INNING SHALL BE STARTED AFTER 60 MINUTES HAVE ELAPSED. The umpire and both coaches should acknowledge verbally that the new inning shall be the final inning of the game. That final inning shall end when both teams have had a turn at bat and made 3 outs each without any limit on the number of runs they are allowed to score OR when the drop dead limit of 90 total minutes is reached. Drop dead scoring rules as noted above will be applied to 10U as well. If that final inning results in a tied game, the final score shall be reported as a tie.

Here are some EXTREME examples to help clarify this  rule. Most cases will fall somewhere between these 2 examples:


EXAMPLE A: If the 60 minute time limit is reached with 2 outs in the bottom of the 4th inning when 4 runs have already scored and with the bases loaded and a full count, the 4th inning will end when the third out is recorded or the fifth run is scored. ONE NEW INNING --the 5th inning-- will be started and will end when both teams make 3 outs or the drop dead 90 minute game limit is reached. There will likely be up to 29 minutes in this scenario to play out this final inning without any limit on the number of runs a team is allowed to score. It may not take long, and if both teams make 3 quick outs, the game will end long before the drop dead time limit is reached. If the visiting team bats for 29 minutes without recording 3 outs, the game will end without the home team getting an at bat.


EXAMPLE B: If the 60 minute time limit is reached a few seconds AFTER the final out was recorded to end the bottom of the 3rd inning meaning the 4th inning had officially already started when the 60 minute time limit was reached, the 4th inning will be played and will end after both teams record three outs or score 5 runs. ONE NEW INNING --the 5th inning-- will be started and will end when both teams make 3 outs or the drop dead 90 minute game limit is reached with no limits on the runs allowed to score. There won't likely be much time IF ANY to play out the 5th and final inning in this scenario. If the 4th inning is especially long, there may only be 5 minutes for the final inning. The drop dead time limit will almost certainly come into play, and the visiting team will have a significant advantage in this scenario. In fact, it is possible (but unlikely) that the 4th inning takes so long to complete that the 90 minute drop dead time limit is reached and the 5th inning isn't ever started.

Special 8U Rules

  • 8U games will be played with an 11” USA Approved softball.

  • The pitching plate will be set at 30 feet. The game may be played with a pitching plate set at 35 feet if both teams agree.

  • Base Paths will be 60 Feet

  • The WFL will use standard NFHS rules for 8U game play.

  • WFL League Rule Adaptations:   

  • Games will be seven innings in length. There will be a 60 minute time limit. No new innings may begin after 60 minutes. There will be a drop dead time of 75 minutes, at which time the game is ended and the final score is recorded at the time the drop dead time limit was reached.

  • Run rules: 15 runs after 3 innings (2 ½ innings after visitor bats if home team is ahead by 15 runs), 10 runs after 5 innings, (4 ½ innings after visitor bats if home team is ahead by 10 runs)

  • Inning Limit – 3 outs, or when team has had a number of at bats equal to the roster size of the larger of the 2 teams. If team bats their entire lineup, the inning will end when any of the following has occurred: The third out is made during last at bat, the last batter is tagged out, or catcher steps on home plate while having possession of the ball. This means that there is a permanent "force out" at home plate during this "last batter of the inning" scenario.

  • There will be no walks or Hit by Pitch. after the 4th ball of an at bat or the batter is hit by a pitch, a coach on the offensive team shall deliver all pitches to the batter until the at bat comes to an end. The coach pitcher shall start each pitch with both feet within the pitching circle (within 8 feet of the pitching plate). When the coach comes into pitch, the batter shall "inherit" however many strikes she had before ball 4 or being hit by the pitch. The batter can strike out or put the ball in play but cannot take a walk or get hit by a pitch when a coach is pitching. The umpire should still indicate called strikes in the event that the coach pitch is a strike and the batter does not swing.

  • No dropped third strike rule, batter is out on strike three

  • No steals are allowed, lead offs are allowed once the pitch is released,

  • The look back rule will be in effect. Umpires will issue one warning per batter/runner, but next infraction will result in an out.

  • No advancement on wild pitches or passed balls, time will be called and runners will be returned to base at time of pitch.

  • No bunting will be allowed in the 8u divisions, first time a warning will be issued the batter second time the batter will be issued an out. All runners will return back to the base at the time of pitch.

  • There is no limit on the number of bases a runner can advance on any play as long as the ball remains in live ball territory. Even on an overthrow or other defensive error, runners may freely advance at their own risk.

  • Mound Visits: 5 per game, on the 6th visit and each additional visit will require a pitching change

  • 8U teams may use 3 or 4 outfielders (9 or 10 total defenders).

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