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Philly Bocce > Rules


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Philly Bocce Rules


First and foremost all United Social Sports leagues are 50% Social and 50% Sport. We do have officials; however, we expect individuals to respect the league’s culture of fair and fun play. Foul language and rough play will not be tolerated and individuals who cannot adhere to our standards of fair play and sportsmanship may be asked to leave the league. United Social Sports wants everyone to have a fun and be social while enjoying a great sport. USS will do whatever they can to make sure all players are having fun.


United Social Sports is proud to relieve captains of the burden of paying for full teams. While captains and players are able to prepay for additional players and or full teams, it is not a requirement for participation in our leagues. We  welcome individual player payments.

We are also proud to welcome those who do not have a full team (small groups and free agents) to participate in our league.

Our primary mission is to make it easier for people to have fun and get involved with social sports and these policies help accomplish that goal.

Because of these policies all registrations are on a first come first serve basis and any roster that does not reach our standard size (based on each sport) is eligible to receive free agents and or small group by the league. Rosters made up of primarily free agents and or a collection of small groups may field more players than the standard roster size. This policy is in place to help ensure free agent teams are able to consistently field teams each week.


1. Group’s must have at least 5 players on their roster to be elevated to Team status, however the league reserves the right to place free agent rollers on teams with fewer than 5 players.  12 players is the max number of players able to compete during a single match. It is encourage that teams have 6-10 players on their roster for the times when individuals are unable to attend.

2. Each team will have a captain, who will be the official representative to the league and will be responsible for communicating messages from the league. A co-captain is also highly encourage.

A. While phone numbers are optional for regular players all captains must ensure that their profiles have an accurate phone number listed. This is used during urgent communications between the league and captains and will never be shared with third parties.

3. Players must be registered (and paid in full) to play and to be counted towards a groups Team status.



Game Play

Basic Rules

• Each team can consist of 5 to 12 players. Teams will have 4 balls each in every set. The match will begin after the captains flip a coin to decide who will throw the Palina first. The team who throws the Palina first will also throw the first Bocce Ball.  (if you have less than 2 people on a given week your team will forfiet)

• The Palina must go past the mid-way point of the bocce court and stay in bounds in order to start. If the Palina does not go past the mid-way point and stay in bounds than the Palina must be re-thrown. If the Palina once again does not pass the mid-way point or stay inbounds than the opposing team will now throw the Palina.

• Once the Palina is in play than the object is to get your teams balls closer to the Palina than the other team. For every bocce ball your team has closer than the other teams your team will be rewarded a point the most points possible for one set is four.

• The first team that has 15 points will win the match.

• The team that has thrown their bocce balls farther from the Palina will continue to throw until they throw a ball closer than the opposing team.

• Teams can decide their own order of who throws the Palina and bocce balls.

• You can knock a bocce ball of the opposing team or your own team without a penalty.

• You can also knock the Palina, however if the Palina goes out of play than the set will restart and the team who originally threw the Palina will throw it again.

• At least 2 people must be present for a team to compete. The game will result in a 15-0 forfeit if less than 2 people are present.

• No one player can throw a ball more than twice in a given set.

• Judges will settle any disputes between teams and their decisions are final.

• After every game please turn in your score sheet to an official. Your scores and league standings will be posted on the Baltimorebocce.com website.

Awards & Trophies

1. The winning team will get the best trophy DC Metro Area Social Sports, the DAS BOOT a 2 liter glass boot from Germany filled with BEER!!  They will also recieve a gift certificate to the bar, free-admission to the next season and some sport/concert tickets

2)  The other top teams (2nd and 3rd) will also recieve prizes.

3. Additional prizes and trophies maybe given.


1. Teams & Rollers are encouraged to introduce themselves to their opponents prior to the start of each frame.

2. Teams are encourage to “line up” after their match and shake hands, give high fives, or otherwise congratulate their rivals.

3. Bocce ball is considered a game for the civilized and friendly. While healthy competition is encouraged, any player deemed to be acting in an unsportsmanlike manner will be warned on their first instance, removed from the game on their second (and their score fore-fitted) and finally removed from the league on their 3rd infraction. Examples of unacceptable conduct include excessive badgering of players (to include cussing, shouting or heckling) and or excessively rude conduct to other bar patrons or bar staff.  League Reps will have final decision on any issues regarding enforcement of this rule.  We have never had to enforce any of these rules…