Sportsmanship Rules

The following section is mandatory for all coaches and officials to be aware of.

Mercy Rule re: Goal Spread (Applicable to All Levels)

A seven (7) goal spread will invoke the NCRRL Mercy Rule. The Mercy rule will be defined as such:

When (at any point during the game) a 7 goal spread is realized, the following actions will be taken:

  • Referee will still go to the Timekeeper’s Bench and report the goal as before, the goal will be recorded on the game sheet but the scoreboard will not be updated to reflect the goal.
  • Play will start as normal with a free pass at centre ice.
  • If the team behind in the score does score to close the gap, ONLY goals scored AFTER THAT by the leading team will be reflected on the scoreboard, again until a 7 goal spread is reached (and the above rule starts over).
  • When a greater than 7 goal spread is reached running time of the clock will only be invoked during the second half of the game.
  • The referee will note in the comments on the Game Sheet that the Mercy Rule was applied at SOME point in the game.
  • On submission of the Game Score Report it will be noted that the Mercy Rule was applied at SOME point in the game and a check box will be filled in on the Online Game Report.

It is hoped that if a coach recognizes that they will probably invoke the mercy rule at any point in the game, that alternative strategies for not allowing the score to be run up would be used.

In the interest of ensuring that ice allocations are not wasted, either coach can request to the referee that running time not be invoked so as to ensure that full ice time is used for the entire 50 minute allocation. This is a noted deviation from the ORA rules and is to be applied specifically for the NCRRL only.

Sportsmanship Rule for U9, U10 and all B and C teams, U12 to U19

Game points are normally awarded as one point for a tie and two points for a win. However, in the interest of good sportsmanship, if there is a goal spread of eight (8) or more on the Game Sheet, only one point will be awarded to the winning team. In other words, a team that wins by more than 7 goals will lose a point for the win. As is always the case, the losing team will not be awarded any points. Note that should the losing team score against themselves; the above sanctions will not apply. In situations where the team trailing by 7 goals deliberately lets the ring cross the goal line or scores on themselves to increase the goal spread beyond 7 goals the referee will have full discretion in determining if the team deliberately scored on themselves or allowed the goal in an attempt to penalize the opposing team. If the referee determines that this was the case it will be noted on the game sheet and it will not result in the loss of a point for the team that was leading.

Any coach whose team has the sportsmanship rule applied against them (aka their team was leading at some point by a 7 goal differential), should expect an inquiry from the league to explain the game result and corrective measures they will take to ensure this doesn’t occur again.

Any coach whose team was losing and deliberately attempted to increase the goal spread beyond 7 goals to penalize the other team should expect an inquiry from the league.

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