How To Keep Score in Volleyball

Volleyball is a popular sport that dates back to the 1800’s when William G. Morgan, invented it. Back then volleyball was called “mintonette”. It was not until 1896 that it got its more popular name due to how the ball was volleyed back and forth from player to player.

Now considered as one of the Olympic team sports, rules have gone from basic to extensive. In addition to this evolution in volleyball, a lot of techniques are now being developed such as the spike and the block and even what they term as “setting” and “passing” which require the team players to be skillful enough in controlling the ball to defend their side of the court.
At first look, volleyball seems like a complicated sport. However, it is not difficult to understand. Two teams with six players each are formed and stay on opposite sides of the net. One team serves the ball to the other over the net and the opposing team has to hit it back to the serving team. Until the ball falls or hits the net, none of the teams score. In the old scoring system, only the serving team could get points. This system of scoring is called the side out scoring. Nowadays, it is the rally scoring system that is being adapted.

It is not difficult to keep score in volleyball. However, it is important that the scorer observe the flow of the game properly to ensure that the teams get the points that they deserve.

In keeping score, a team gets a point for the following:

  • If the serve or the return of the opposing team does not go over the net.
  • If the serve or the return lands anywhere outside the court of the receiving team.
  • If any of the players from the opposing team touches the ball consecutively for two or more times without returning the ball.
  • If the serving team touches the ball consecutively more than three times before it is returned to the opposing team.
  • If the server steps beyond the service line when hitting the ball. This is a also called a foot
  • If the opposing team catches or lifts the ball, and not actually hits it.
  • If the opposing team touches the net during the game.
  • If the body of any player of the opposing team crosses the net and causes distraction for the other team to hit the ball.

However, you can still choose to use the side out scoring, where only the serving team can get points. The serving team gets points for grounding the ball on the opposing team’s side of the court, or if the opposing team does not return the ball in less than three hits.

In professional events, a match consists of five game sets. A set is won when a team gets 25 points. However, their score has to be at least two points higher than the opposing team. In more competitive and recreational playing, a match may consist of at least two sets.


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