2019 Italian Food & Culture Festival Bocce Rules

Bocce is played with eight large balls and one smaller target or object ball called a pallino. There are four balls per team and they are made of a different color or pattern to distinguish the balls of one team from those of the other team.

The game is played with two teams, with each team having two players. One member of the two person teams plays from one side of the court, while the other plays from the opposite side of the court. Their respective opponents will also have one player on each side of the court.

A game begins with the toss of a coin. The team that wins the coin toss can choose to either have first toss of the pallino or the color of the balls they will use. To start a game, the pallino is rolled or tossed by a member of the team having won the coin toss. A player can toss the pallino any distance as long as it passes the minimum distance line of the court and stays within the boundaries of the court. If the player fails to toss the ball properly into play, a member of the opposing team will toss the ball into play. If the opposing team fails to properly toss the pallino into play, the toss reverts to a member of the original team.

The team that did not toss the pallino, has the first roll followed by the opposing team. The teams will continue alternating shots until the team members on that side have thrown all four of their balls. After both teams have exhausted all their balls, a frame is over and points are awarded. Only one team scores in a frame. One point is awarded for each ball that is closer to the pallino than the closest ball of the opposing team. In the event that the closest ball of each team is the same distance (or within an 1/8 of an inch discrepancy) from the pallino, no points will be awarded and the pallino returns to the team that delivered it. Only balls which are distinguishably closer to the pallino than any of the opponent's balls are awarded points. All measurements should be made from the center of the pallina to the edge of a Bocce ball. Games are played to 15 points with the first team reaching 15 points being the winner of a game.

All balls must be thrown underhanded. A team has the option of rolling, tossing, bouncing, its ball down the court provided it does not go outside the boundaries of the court or the player does not violate the foul line. The foul line is used to deliver all balls down the court with the intent of getting a ball closer to the pallino, knocking the opponent's ball away from the pallino, or hitting the pallino so that it ends up closer to your team's ball.

A player should not step on or over the foul line before releasing any ball. If a player steps over the foul line, the player will receive one warning. For a player that commits a second foul line infraction, the team fouled against will be awarded 2 points. The team committing the foul will be awarded no points for the frame.

Any ball that goes outside the boundaries of the court is considered a dead ball and is removed immediately from play until the end of a frame.

**Also, players cannot talk across the court. Ex: you cannot tell your fellow team member if their ball or their opponents ball is closer to the pallino.