Rules & Game Format

Pond Hockey Rules

All players are required to wear a helmet and skates, you should follow USA Hockey equipment recommendations; helmets need to be HECC approved.

All players must be 21 years of age by the start date of the tournament. Teams must also follow the additional age requirements for their respective division. Photo I.D.’s are required at check-in and will be checked throughout the event. Players unable to produce a photo I.D., at any point, cannot participate until the I.D. is provided to a tournament director.  The wrist band denotes registered players.

Players may only play on one team.

All teams must have home (white or light) and away (dark) jerseys.

Minimum number of players on a team is 4, max. of 8. Teams must have 4 players at the start of each game.

Teams need to be ready to play at their designated start time; if a team does not have four (4) players ready to play, they will be penalized 1 goal for every 2 minutes the game starts late.

All goals must be scored from the attacking side of center ice.

There will be no offside or icing.

There will be one off-ice pond official to monitor the play (scoring, time, puck reset, and arbiter of infractions).

Referees will have the discretion to also award a "penalty shot" to the opposing team when a minor penalty is flagrant and/or a team is consistently playing in a reckless manner.

Penalty shot will be taken from center ice and must be attempted within 30 seconds of the penalty being called. Anyone on the opposing team can take the shot. The team that is awarded the penalty shot will also be given possession of the puck following the penalty shot attempt (regardless of the outcome of the shot).
Any major infractions called will result in an awarded goal and ejection from the tournament of the penalized player, with no replacement.

Abuse of officials will be considered a major penalty. This includes yelling, swearing, or arguing about calls.

Fighting is strictly prohibited. Any player that fights will be ejected from the tournament with no replacement, and a goal will be awarded.

There will be no checking or body contact. A minor or major penalty will result if the referee deems it serious enough.

There will be no slap shots. If the stick comes above the knee in a slap shot motion it will result in a change of possession, the non-offending team gets the puck on their half of the ice.

There will be no raising the puck above the knees; pucks that are intentionally raised above the knees will result in a change of puck possession. Saucer passes (i.e. pucks that are lifted low, below the knee) are acceptable.

Making contact with the puck using your stick above the waist will result in a change of puck possession.

There will be no goalies or use of goal tending equipment.

Goaltending is not allowed. A player may not patrol, "camp out" or remain stationary in the crease area and act as a goaltender. A defender may deflect the puck in the crease area, but the defender must do so while continuing to move through the crease area. The crease area is defined as an imaginary box extending out four feet from the outside corners of the goal. A player may not lay his/her stick, drop to their knees or lay on the ice to protect the goal. Players must remain on their skates in front of goal. A goal for the non-offending team and change of puck possession will result.

If the puck goes out of the playing area the referee will determine who sent it out and give possession to the non-offending team at the point where the puck went out. The defending team must provide two stick lengths to their opponent upon re-entry and play must start immediately on the referee’s command (whistle).

There will be a center ice face-off to start the game and the second half. Otherwise, teams will be required to wait on their side of the ice for goals scored and penalties. Defensive teams can engage the offensive teams once the play starts moving up ice. The offensive team must move the puck up ice quickly on the referees command (whistle).

Illegal players and teams:

If the tournament director(s) determine that an illegal player has participated in the tournament: (1) the player(s) shall be immediately removed from the tournament. (2) The team using the ineligible player(s) will receive a 0-1 forfeit loss in each of the games played with the illegal player(s). Illegal players are any participants that violate the minimum age requirement for their division or play in a division below their skill level.

If it is determined by the tournament director(s) at any point during the preliminary round games that a team as a whole are far above their competition, that team will be permitted to play the 4 game guarantee, but will receive a 1-0 forfeit loss for those games and will not be permitted to play for the championship.

There are no carry ins allowed at the tournament.


Game Format


This tournament is a 4 on 4 round robin event. Rink dimensions are approximately 100’ X 80’.

Each team will play three round robin games within their division.

Teams receive: Regulation Win = 3 pts, Overtime Win = 2 pts, Overtime Loss = 1 pt, Regulation Loss = 0 pts.

Each division will have a championship game and semi-finals if necessary.

All games are 30 minutes in length consisting of two 15 minute run time halves with a 2 minute warm-up before each game.

Round robin games that end in a tie will result in a sudden death overtime period. The first team to score wins.

Playoff round games (quarter-final, semi-final and championships) that end in a tie will be decided by a 5-minute run time overtime period. The team that scores the most goals during that time will be the winner. If still tied, 5-minute run time periods will continue, where the team that scores the most goals during that period wins; until a winner is determined with one minute breaks in between each period.

A minimum of four teams is required to run a division. The maximum number of teams per division will be determined by the number of teams entered in the overall event.

Pool play in determining the winner of a pool, or the highest seed will be determined by total points, if tied the first tie breaker is goals against, and second is goals for.


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