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2020-21 ATO SEASON: WEEK 10

By USA Hockey, 11/06/20, 6:00AM MST


QUESTION: In Adult Hockey, Player A1 has a half-shield visor. Player B2 high-sticks Player A1 in the face, causing blood. No matter the reason for the high-stick, what is the proper penalty option if an official witnesses this and the injury with blood?

ANSWERRule 621(b) in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states,
“A major plus a game misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player who injures an opponent as a result of high sticking.”


QUESTION: Team A is shorthanded for a Minor penalty and begins to break out of their own zone. While skating through the Neutral Zone, a Team B player Slashes the Team A puck carrier. The delayed penalty is signaled by the Referee. Team A continues into their Attacking Zone and scores a Goal. What happens to the delayed penalty on Team B?”

ANSWERIf a team is shorthanded, and that shorthanded team scores a goal during a delayed penalty call to the power-play team the delayed penalty is reported on the game sheet but is not served. Play will resume at the on-ice strength at the time of the goal.


QUESTION: What is the referees' responsibility for maintaining a positive environment for players, when the venue allows alcohol consumption and the players report harassment by fans who are visibly consuming alcohol? This is at the 12U Level. I cannot find a specific rule pertaining to use of alcohol and/or harassment by fans in the rule book.

ANSWERThe USA Hockey Playing Rules regard the rules of playing the game and therefore do not address spectator behavior. Your situation is an unfortunate one that places the players, coaches and officials in a very difficult situation. Obviously the drunk spectator behavior is detrimental to the game, but at the same time how do you argue with a drunk and emotional parent?
This situation is best managed by both the officials and coaching staff of both teams. The coaches should want the most positive playing environment for their players, and are in a good position to influence parents who act out of control. If the coaches are reluctant or refuse to assist, the officials have little choice other than to “run the game clock” until the offender(s) is removed from the rink (by way of the team coach).
In any case, this situation should be reported to your Local Supervisor of Officials who can bring the issue to the attention of the Local Hockey Association.


QUESTION: Can a non-rostered player be on the bench during a league game?

ANSWERThe USA Hockey Glossary definition of Team Official states,
“A player or goalkeeper on the roster who is unable to play, other than through suspension, may be on the players’ bench without being considered a Team Official if he is wearing the team jersey and all required head and face protective equipment.”
Rule 201(b) in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states,
“Only players in uniform and properly rostered Team Officials may occupy the players’ bench.”


QUESTION: What is the guidance for the following situation: 8 seconds left in the period. Puck is dropped. Clock was not restarted. A team scored a goal. There may have been enough time for the team to skate the puck into the zone and score....but perhaps that would have taken longer than 8 seconds. What should the decision be based on?

ANSWERGame Officials should use their best judgment when deciding when/if the clock should start and stop, and make their best decisions as it relates to end of a period. They are encouraged to collaborate with the Official Timekeeper in these cases.

If the officials decide that the period ended before the goal was scored (i.e. the full eight seconds had elapsed), then the goal should be disallowed.