How Do You Keep Score in Basketball?

To keep score in basketball, add one point to a team's score for every made free throw, two points for every made basket and three points for every made three pointer. Certain basketball variations have different scoring rules.

In a standard basketball game, there are two teams. Each team has one hoop to defend. When in possession of the ball, a team shoots the ball at the other team's hoop to score points. The court has a three point arc around each hoop. Shots taken outside the arc count for three points, and shots taken inside count for two.

Free throws are a penalty when one team commits a foul. A player that is fouled while shooting always shoots free throws, but the punishment for fouls committed under other circumstances vary. Free throws are taken from behind the free throw line, which is 15 feet from the hoop.

In street basketball games, scoring varies depending on the players and the area. One common variation is reducing the point value to one point for a made basket and two points for a shot made from outside the three point arc. These street games are often played to a certain point total, such as 11 or 21, with a team required to win by two points.