Making the right call

Over the season we have had a few penalties called and I would like to use the space to educate everyone on why they were called.

This week we have had a fight during the game. Lets look at the rule book to see how it should have been called.

USARS Rule book:

"Rule 44 Fighting:

A fight shall be deemed to have occurred when at least one player punches or attempts to punch an opponent repeatedly or when two players wrestle in such a manner as to make it difficult for the Referees to intervene and separate the combatants.

44.7 Instigator - An instigator of an altercation shall be a player who by his actions or demeanor demonstrates any/some of the following criteria: distance trav- eled; gloves off first; first punch thrown; menacing attitude or posture; verbal instigation or threats; conduct in retaliation to a prior incident; obvious retribution for a previous incident.

A player who is deemed to be the instigator of an altercation shall be assessed an instigating minor penalty, a major penalty for fighting, a misconduct, and a game misconduct. 

44.8 Major Penalty Plus a Game Misconduct - A major penalty plus a game mis- conduct shall be imposed on any player who fights. "

As you can see above both players were guilty of rule 44, 44.8 and one player of 44.7. So now lets find out what a Major Penalty plus a Game Misconduct means?

"Rule 20 Major Penalties:

20.1 Major Penalty - For the first major penalty in any one game, the offender, except the goalkeeper, shall be ruled off the rink for five (5) minutes during which time no substitute shall be permitted. 

Rule 24: Game Misconduct Penalties

24.1 Game Misconduct Penalty -  Game misconduct penalty involves the suspension of a player for the balance of the game but a substitute is permitted to replace immediately the player so removed. A total of ten (10) minutes shall be charged in the records on the Official Game Report against the offending player. 

24.2 Suspension - Any player assessed a game misconduct shall also be assessed an automatic one game suspension, to be served in the immediate next game already listed on the team schedule. "

So during the game both players received a Major penalty and a Game misconduct and therefore will be suspended for 1 game. We did mis the Instigator call as referees but will work on getting it right the next time. All and all the referees did a good job with the call.

Hopefully this helps us all understand the rules a bit better and why the referees make the calls they make. While we never like to see any of our players attempt to fight and very strictly don't allow it, we understand it will happen to even the best mannered children when emotions are high and adrenaline takes over. We need to use this time to teach them why it's not acceptable and how to handle those emotions better the next time and help them grow as a person.