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29 Americans to Officiate World Championships

By, 12/13/13, 9:45PM MST


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Twenty-nine American officials have been selected to serve as referees or linesmen for major International Ice Hockey Federation events in 2013-14, USA Hockey announced today.

"We have a tremendous group of officials that has been selected to represent USA Hockey on the international stage," said Matt Leaf, director of USA Hockey's officiating education program. "They've all worked hard to earn the right to officiate at the highest level of the sport."

American officials will take part in 16 IIHF events in 2014, including the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, the IIHF World Junior Championship in Malmo, Sweden, the IIHF Under-18 Men's World Championship in Lappeenranta and Imatra, Finland, and the IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship in Budapest, Hungary.

Assignments for the 2014 IIHF Men's World Championship in Minsk, Belarus, will be determined in late February.

Officials assigned to the IIHF events this year include Kate Connolly (Philadelphia, Pa.) and Laura Johnson (Rochester, N.Y.), who both officiated at the 2013 Women's World Championship; and Timothy Mayer (Okemos, Mich.) and Fraser McIntyre (Amherst, N.Y.), who both served at the 2013 IIHF Under-18 Men's World Championship.

A full list of America officials and their respective events is below.

American Officials Assigned to 2014 IIHF World Championships

2013 European Women's Club Competition Semifinals
Bad Tolz, Germany

Name Hometown Role
Ceci Morris Hoffman Estates, Ill. Referee

2013 Winter World University Games
Trentino, Italy

Name Hometown Role
Jackie Spresser Westminster, Colo. Linesman
Melissa Szkola Chesterfield, Mich. Referee

2013 IIHF World Junior Championship Division I, Group A
Sanok, Poland

Name Hometown Role
Chris Pitoscia Edison, N.J. Referee

2013 IIHF World Junior Championship Division I, Group B
Dumfries, United Kingdom

Name Hometown Role
Brett Sheva Horsham, Pa. Referee

2013 Spengler Cup
Davos, Switzerland

Name Hometown Role
Steve Patafie Bethlehem, Ga. Referee

2014 IIHF World Junior Championship
Malmo, Sweden

Name Hometown Role
Timothy Mayer Okemos, Mich. Referee
Fraser McIntyre Amherst, N.Y. Linesman

2014 Olympic Winter Games
Sochi, Russia

Name Hometown Role
Erin Blair Hoffman Estates, Ill. Referee
Thomas George Monrovia, Md. Linesman
Alicia Hanrahan South St. Paul, Minn. Linesman
Laura Johnson Rochester, N.Y. Linesman
Andy McElman Algonquin, Ill. Linesman
Ian Walsh Portland, Ore. Referee
Christopher Woodworth Rochester, N.Y. Linesman

2014 IIHF World Junior Championship Division III
Izmir, Turkey

Name Hometown Role
Brian Oliver Rochester, N.Y. Linesman

2014 European Women's Club Competition Finals
Location TBD

Name Hometown Role
Dina Allen Wheatfield, N.Y. Referee

2014 Women's World Championship Division II, Group B Qualification
Mexico City, Mexico

Name Hometown Role
Jamie Fenstermacher Hibbing, Minn. Linesman
Jamie Huntley LaJolla, Calif. Referee
Jill Salvo Long Beach, Calif Linesman

2014 IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship
Budapest, Hungary

Name Hometown Role
Kate Connolly Philadelphia, Pa. Linesman
Katie Guay Dedham, Mass. Referee

2014 IIHF Under-18 Men's World Championship Division I
Fussen, Germany

Name Hometown Role
Kristine Morrison Richfield, Minn. Referee

2014 IIHF Women's World Championship Division I, Group A
Preov, Czech Republic

Name Hometown Role
Jerilyn Glenn St. Paul, Minn. Referee

2014 IIHF Women's World Championship Division II, Group A
Asiago, Italy

Name Hometown Role
Michaela Frattarelli Bristol, R.I. Linesman

2014 IIHF Under-18 Men's World Championship
Lappeenranta and Imatra, Finland

Name Hometown Role
Geoff Miller West Newbury, Mass. Referee
Dana Penkivech Apple Valley, Minn. Linesman

2014 Men's World Championship Division I, Group A
Goyang, Korea

Name Hometown Role
Christopher Ciamaga East Aurora, N.Y. Referee
Judson Ritter Bethlehem, Pa. Linesman

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Have you verified the score sheet?

By USA Hockey 02/13/2019, 8:15am MST

Remember when score sheets simply consisted of three or four carbon copies at the scorer’s table?

While we’re still likely to see that classic technique at some facilities, most have abandoned the handwritten score sheets in favor of electronic scoring systems and advanced score sheets – or minimally combined the process of both.

But whether it’s handwritten or electronic, the score sheet is not deemed “good to go” until an official signs off on it at the conclusion of the game. Rule 502(e) is clear in saying, “At the conclusion of the game, the referee shall check the official score sheet, including team rosters and players in uniform, for accuracy prior to signing.”

The game score sheet is considered an official record that documents the participants and the actions that take place during a game. Teams need them to document participation for eligibility in state or national tournaments, or to provide verification of a suspension served. They may also be keeping stats on players for their continued development and promotion to higher levels of play.  Plus, the score sheet provides a means to track progressive penalties or to identify trends within a local area or league. 

Regardless as to what system is used (hard copy or electronic scoring), the game score sheet is considered an official document and officials must adhere to their responsibility to treat it as such. Whereas the vast majority of officials have been good at reviewing and signing off on hard copy score sheets, there appears to be some confusion as to the need to verify the electronic version.

The electronic score sheet is an official document. Teams print these from the web-based system to verify their eligibility as mentioned above. Because it is an official record of the game, the officials have the responsibility to make sure all data is entered correctly, including the officials’ names, and must sign-off on the information prior to having the game sheet closed and finalized. This is no different than crossing off blank areas, making sure penalties are recorded properly and signing the actual hard copy score sheet. 

As a refresher, here are some tips on what to look for, and the officials’ responsibility to verify game sheets at the conclusion of every game.

1) Make sure that players who are not present to participate in the game are crossed off (hard copy) or removed from the game sheet (electronic). Only those players/coaches who are eligible and present to participate should be listed on the score sheet.

2) Confirm all penalties are recorded properly and to the proper player. Many times a game misconduct penalty will be recorded as a ten-minute misconduct or vice versa. If a player is assessed a minor plus misconduct, each of those must be recorded as a separate penalty. If you find there is a clerical error where a penalty was assessed properly, but not recorded correctly, fix the mistake prior to signing or closing off the game sheet.

However, an official is not allowed to simply change their call that was made during the game. For example, if an official assesses a major penalty for slashing during the game and the player serves the five minute major, but after the game, the officials talk and determine that the player deserved a major plus game misconduct penalty, or match penalty instead, the score sheet cannot be changed at this time. The officials may submit an incident report requesting the incident be reviewed under Rule 410 Supplementary Discipline.

3) Make sure all of the on-ice officials who worked the game are listed properly on the game sheet.

4) Once you have determined that all of the recorded information is accurate, the officials must sign (legibly) the hard copy of the score sheet or sign off and approve the electronic version so it can be finalized.

The one exception is when the scorekeeper manually keeps track of all of the game actions, but will then later enter the data into an electronic system. In this instance, it is important for the referee to make sure the document the scorekeeper used to record actions is accurate and they understand the penalties assessed so they can be entered properly.  It may be a good idea to go back at a later time and check the electronic version for accuracy, as well.

The bottom line is that the game sheet for each game you work is a reflection of your performance on the ice. If you do not pay attention to details and there are inaccuracies on the game sheet, the perception will be your performance on the ice was also lacking effort and attention to detail. Not to mention, it may also effect any potential imposed suspensions and/or eligibility of players/coaches. 

Please take score sheet (hard copy or electronic versions) management seriously as it is a major part of the official’s responsibility.  Doing so will make life easier for volunteers who are charged with tracking such things and will make the game better.  And if the game is better, your job as an official probably becomes more enjoyable, too.

Holding rule-breakers accountable

By USA Hockey 01/11/2019, 5:15pm MST

Q&A with Matt Leaf on the importance of game reporting

Everyone in hockey wants the game to be played within the rules. More importantly, they want those who fail to do so to be held accountable for their actions. 

As a result, USA Hockey has spent the past several seasons making appropriate consequences for the rule-breakers, including more severe penalties for dangerous actions and progressive suspensions for repeat offenders.

And while officials can’t prevent the dangerous action from occurring, they do play a significant role in holding accountable those responsible for these actions with proper rule enforcement. Not only that, but officials must fulfill their responsibility of submitting an accurate and timely game report through the USA Hockey Online Game Reporting System. 

STRIPES recently sat down with Matt Leaf, director of the officiating education program, to learn more about the game reporting process and to address some of the concerns he hears from affiliate disciplinary personnel on the reporting process and what officials can do better.

STRIPES: The Online Game Reporting System is in its fifth season, what are some of the areas where the system has helped the game?
Matt Leaf:
When properly used, the system has definitely helped affiliates and local leagues manage suspensions and the disciplinary process. It allows for a consistent game-reporting format where the required information immediately gets into the hands of the proper authorities once submitted by the official. The system also provides a more user-friendly mechanism for the officials to file the report on their mobile devices.

One other benefit is, with better compliance in filing reports each season, USA Hockey can track certain infractions and identify any trends both geographically and by types of infractions.

STRIPES: How is USA Hockey looking to continue to improve the system and make it even easier for the officials?
We are constantly receiving feedback from affiliate administrators and officials with suggestions, and all of that is taken seriously. In some cases, there are good ideas that we try to incorporate as soon as possible. In other situations, a bigger picture needs to be taken into consideration.

One main area that we are working on is the player search component and tying that into team rosters so officials can simply pull down the team roster to identify the player versus trying to narrow down an entire database. Doing so will greatly improve the accuracy of identifying the guilty player/coach and simplify the process for officials. 

The second area that is being worked on is the reporting side of things for administrators and making penalty data more readily available – basically simplifying their ability to manage hundreds of reports.

STRIPES: What is the official’s responsibility when it comes to submitting game reports?
First and foremost, with the new progressive suspension rules, the official has to be timely in submitting reports so the system can identify any players/coaches who have reached a suspension threshold. Timely should be well within 24 hours of the game, but certainly no longer than 48 hours (the sooner part of this option being preferred).

Next, it is imperative that the official pays attention to details and provides accurate information in regards to the player(s)/coaches involved (e.g., the type of penalty assessed and the proper rule reference). There really is no excuse for an official to submit a report for clicking on a minor plus misconduct for head contact when in fact they assessed a major plus game misconduct. The correct rule reference is also important as it does play a role in the system’s ability to track repeat offenders.

STRIPES: That seems to be pretty critical information.  What are some other things officials need to know when submitting a game report?
The most common mistake made is when an official submits a duplicate report (or maybe both officials submit a report) for the same incident. This creates problems because the system does not know it is a duplicate, so it counts it as two different strikes against the same player, even though it was only one infraction. Only one report (the officials can work on it together, if needed) needs to submitted for each incident.

Another common error is submitting multiple reports from the same game when, in fact, the system is designed to handle multiple incidents involving multiple players from the same game. Instead of starting over with a new report for each penalty assessed, the officials can simply do one report for the game and identify each incident separately in the one report.

Finally, officials have to know the rules and the consequences for the rules. Under Rule 411 (Progressive Suspensions), there is a full listing of infractions involving major penalties that require a report to be submitted. Each penalty also has to be listed separately. For example, a player gets a major penalty for slashing, and then later on, gets a major plus game misconduct for head contact. It’s not enough to simply submit a report assessing a game misconduct for the second major penalty in the same game. The report needs to have each penalty (slashing, head contact, game misconduct for second major) listed separately so the system can properly track the aggressive fouls and send out the automatic alert when a threshold is reached.

STRIPES: Any other final words of wisdom?
USA Hockey wants players and coaches held accountable for their actions, whether it is for unsportsmanlike behavior or dangerous play outside the boundaries established the rules. This can’t be accomplished without the help of the officials properly enforcing the rules and submitting the appropriate game report when needed. 

Officials have a responsibility (in fact it is part of their duties) to properly submit accurate game reports when required.

Detailed instructions on filing game reports are available on, and if unsure on something, ask your local supervisor or assignor. Paying attention to details in submitting a timely and accurate report will not only minimize confusion and having to answer questions later, but also will eliminate having suspensions overturned on technical issues and will, ultimately, hold those who tarnish the game with their behavior accountable for their actions.