Sponsored By:   Nassau County Parks, Recreation and Museums
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Player and Parents Code of Conduct

Players and Parents/Guardians of all NCHL players must read, review and sign the Code of Conduct form to be collected and held by their respective associations prior to a team’s first game.

NCHL players must wear all protective equipment required by USA Hockey in its approved and unaltered form.   These equipment requirements may vary by Age Classification.   In addition, all NCHL players must wear commercially available neck protection guard at all times, as well as internal mouthpieces for players at the Pee Wee level and above.  Any violation of the neck protection rule is subject to a ten-minute misconduct penalty. This includes all practices, league games and exhibition games.

Playing Rules

The NCHL playing rules shall be periodically amended to conform to those prescribed by USA Hockey. The NCHL has exercised its rights as a proud member of USA Hockey to make the following exceptions and/or additions to USA Hockey playing rules:

Playing Times


All NCHL games will consist of 3 (Three) 18 Minute running time periods. The final two minutes will be stop time if there is a goal differential of 2 (two) or less goals.
The score shall not be posted on the scoreboard beyond a seven-goal differential.
There will be no overtime period, shootout or any other tiebreaker activity authorized in regular season games

Penalty Times & Assessments

Squirt through Pee Wee: Body Checking penalties are a 2 (two) minute minor, A second body check in the same game shall result in an automatic 10 (ten) minute misconduct.

Bantam Level: Body Checking penalties are a 2 (two) minute minor plus a 10 (ten) minute misconduct.  A second check in the same game shall result in an automatic game misconduct. (Plus One Game)

Zero Tolerance - For foul language, obscene gestures, ethnic or racial slurs, spitting or any other action unbecoming a player committed by any player on or off the ice, whether directed to officials or not, the offending player shall be assessed at least a game misconduct suspension from the next three games.

Any infraction penalized resulting in a Game, or Match Penalty being levied, requires a game report to be written by the game referee and sent to the NCHL Staff.


Player Suspensions

The League Director may conduct a hearing at any time on any team or player that amasses excessive penalty statistics, and take appropriate action as necessary.

All game suspensions, which occur in games between NCHL teams or other teams, shall be for the next scheduled games of the NCHL team including exhibitions, playoffs and regular season games the following season.
Any player who receives an indefinite suspension during any portion of the season shall not participate further in any games (exhibition or league) until a hearing is conducted by the NCHL
Miscellaneous Infractions – Player Related

Handshake Procedure

At the end of each game, all players from each team shall line up at center ice for handshaking, which is to be considered a display of good sportsmanship.

After handshaking, the home team shall return to the bench and remain there until the visiting team leaves the ice, and take the path of least resistance when exiting the ice to return to the dressing room.

The handshake may be dispensed with at the discretion of the Game Referee, or at the request of the Game Supervisor. The Game Referee shall notify each Coach and the Game Supervisor prior to the end of the game when practical if the handshaking is to be dispensed with.

If fighting results during the handshake, each player involved shall automatically be assessed a fighting penalty and the suspension is doubled.  The suspension is subject to review of the game report.  The game officials shall observe the post-game handshake.

Off-Ice Incidents

A player who is involved in an off-ice altercation before or after a game shall be given a game misconduct or stricter penalty, which shall result in a minimum 3 game suspension.  A hearing may be conducted to determine what if any additional suspensions/disciplinary actions should be imposed.  
Misconduct’s – Coaches, Assistant Coaches, Managers, and Trainers

For foul language, obscene gestures or spitting committed by a Team Coach, Assistant Coach, Manager or Trainer, whether directed to officials or not, the offending team shall be assessed a bench minor penalty and the offender shall receive a game misconduct penalty and be suspended for the next 3 games.  Further, said Coach, Assistant Coach, Manager or Trainer shall not participate in any other hockey activity, including practices during the period of his suspension.  A second infraction in the same season shall result in the offender being suspended pending a hearing to determine what if any additional penalties/disciplinary actions should be imposed.

Before or during a game, if a Coach, Assistant Coach, Manager or Trainer leaves the bench and comes upon the ice for any reason, except when signaled by an on-ice official, including case of player injury, the offender shall be assessed a bench minor against the team, a game misconduct against the individual or both. 
A Coach receiving a game misconduct (for other than 15 penalties per game) shall be suspended for three games for the first offense and five games for the second offense.   For a third offense, the offender will be suspended pending a hearing to determine what if any additional penalties should be imposed.
Abuse or harassment of league officials (i.e. NCHL Hockey Staff, Game Officials, Referees, Linesmen, etc.), on or off the ice, committed by a Coach, Assistant Coach, Manager or Trainer shall result in a minimum 4 game suspension.  At the League Director’s discretion, a hearing may be conducted to determine if any change (more or less) in the number of games suspended is warranted.

Any coach pulling his team off the ice and refusing to continue play will be assessed a Match Penalty per USA Hockey rules.  A hearing will be held to determine what if any additional penalties should be imposed.

Any Coach found guilty of sending his player or players off the bench to enter an altercation-taking place on the ice surface will be suspended for one year from the time of the incident.  Further, said Coach, Assistant Coach, Manager or Trainer shall not participate in any other NCHL sponsored activities during the period of his suspension.

A coach receiving his/her first game misconduct for 15 penalties in a game shall be suspended for one game as per USA Hockey Rules.   

Additional Rules Regarding Player and Coach Suspensions

All game suspensions, which occur in games between NCHL teams or other teams, shall be for the next scheduled games of the NCHL team including exhibitions, playoffs and regular season games the following season.

Any suspensions that are not completely served within the official season in which they are obtained will carry over into the following season.

Game Supervisors, Safety and Spectator Control

In the event that a facility is not open to the public, or doors are locked nobody is to enter until a NCHL Staff member is present.

Spectators at NCHL games are expected to conduct themselves with decorum at all times, and in accordance with the NCHL Parent/Spectator Code of Conduct and USA Hockey’s Zero Tolerance Policy.

The Game Supervisor (NCHL Staff) shall have ultimate responsibility for safety, game conditions and spectator control.

Prior to the start of the game, the Game Supervisor (NCHL Staff) shall identify himself or herself to the Game Officials and to the Visiting Coach.  Prior to the game, the Game Supervisor (NCHL Staff) shall print his or her name in the space provided on the score sheet.  During the game, the Game Supervisor (NCHL Staff) shall place himself or herself in such a position as to be accessible to the Game Officials in case of a problem or question.

In the event that any or all spectators become unruly or otherwise disrupt the progress of a game, the Game Supervisor (NCHL Staff) shall warn the spectators involved discontinuing their disruptive behavior or the rink shall be cleared of the spectators involved.

Prior to clearing the rink of any spectators, the Game Referee shall first consult with the Game Supervisor (NCHL Staff) .

The Game Supervisor (NCHL Staff) may suspend or discontinue the game at his/her sole discretion under the following conditions:

  • Failure or breakage of rink equipment or ice conditions making it impossible to continue or endangering the safety of players, Game Officials or spectators.
  • Insufficient number of players remaining to continue the game.
  • At his or her own discretion and/or at the request of the Game Referee, Coach or Manager for reasons of safety.
  • Notification by rink officials that time has run out.

Suspensions and Resolutions of Disputes

All players, coaches, team representatives, on/off ice and league officials have the right to a hearing regarding suspensions imposed upon them by the league.  The process is as follows:

Upon receipt of the request, the League Director will first conduct an informal hearing.  He will gather all relevant information pertaining to the suspension in question.  He will attempt to speak with all involved parties, including the athlete or person to whom the suspension applies.  He will review the incident with the NCHL Staff on duty at the time of the indecent.  The suspension may be modified; increased, decreased or negated entirely as a result of this informal hearing.

The results of the informal hearing will be reviewed with the players’ Coach.  The Coach will contact the suspended party.  If the suspended party agrees to accept the results of the informal hearing, the matter is considered resolved.  If the suspended party is not satisfied, a date will be established for a formal hearing.  The date of the formal hearing must transpire within fifteen days from the date of first appeal.

A formal hearing will be conducted by no less than three people; the League Director, Deputy League Coordinator, and 1 NCHL Staff. The suspended party and as many witnesses as required to the incident will be asked to attend.  If the suspended party is a minor, his parents will be asked to attend.  The referee or league official imposing the actual suspension will be asked to attend.  If the official is unavailable, a written statement will be accepted on their behalf.  All decisions of the hearing committee will be final.  The player has the right to appeal the league decision to the New York State Affiliate of USA Hockey if he/she is still unhappy with the suspension.

2) USA Hockey By-Laws #10, B, I, refer to a summary suspension.  Although there is no valid interpretation by USA Hockey of a summary suspension, the following is based on an opinion rendered by Peter Lindberg, VP Legal Counsel, and USA Hockey.  A summary suspension is an interim measure to allow the suspending authority the means necessary to conduct a thorough investigation of the charges before conducting a hearing.  A summary suspension would normally be directed at coaches or other adult persons who are charged with the supervision of minor age players and are accused of sexual or physical abuse.

The seeding for playoffs shall be determined by a team’s percentage of wins, ties and losses after approximately the completion of ten games.

Games shall be single elimination.

OVERTIME (post season)

One Period -ten (10) minute running time sudden death.

A five-man shootout.
General Housekeeping Rules

The home team shall occupy the bench to the left of the center red line when facing the ice from the players’ benches.

The Sports Unit representative (NCHL Staff) shall decide any action, situation or occurrence not provided for in these rules on duty at the time.

The Nassau County Department of Recreation and Parks, Through the Sports Unit, shall have the right, at its sole and uncontrolled discretion, to dispense with or change any rule or regulation without notice, in order to insure the health, safety and welfare of our program participants.

Balanced Play

Coaches are responsible for balancing shifts between players. No player shall forfeit his shift or be "benched” so a coach can put out a stronger player. The following reasons are justifiable for when a player may miss his shift; serving a penalty, injury, illness, broken or missing equipment, not paying attention to his/her line change and discipline, when a coach feels that a player’s behavior has become disruptive whether directed behavior is towards the coach, other players, officials, spectators or staff members.

Goaltenders shall split each game equally.

Shift lengths shall be no shorter than 1 minute and no longer than 2 minutes.

The Starting goaltender shall be rotated every game.

Goaltenders shall play 1 full period each and split one period. (Except where if a team has 3 goalies, then each shall play 1 full period each.)
During a penalty kill situation, goaltenders cannot be changed by the short-handed team unless the clock is in stop time or due to injury. (Coaches may use their time out).

Goaltenders cannot be switched more than once in each period except in the case of equipment problems, injury or if the goaltender wishes to remove his/her self from the game. In this situation, the staff person on hand shall be notified immediately of the circumstances.

Until the formation of teams has occurred (TEAM DAY), no team shall consist of more than any combination of two; coaches, assistants, etc... Afterwards, there is no limitation to team assignments.

The maximum number of staff allowed on the bench during games is 4. Any coach or assistant coach who participates on the bench or on the ice, must have on file with the Director of the Nassau County Hockey League a copy of an up to date volunteer form. One person from each team must be deemed "Head Coach". This person shall become the teams "key contact".

The NCHL supports and enforces USA Hockey’s rules for ZERO TOLERANCE. All coaches, players’ parents and spectators are subject to these rules, including but not limited to, expulsion from the program.

Shifts will always run consecutive and shall not revert back to line 1 due to the start of a new period.

Coaches are required to balance lines as best as possible. When an even number of players are on the bench, lines can be played in a "1, 2, 3" fashion. When an odd number of players exist, players are to be balanced by position. Example; 13 players, 2rd, 3ld, 3lw, 3rw, 2c in this situation centers would rotate 1,2 wings would rotate 1, 2, 3 etc. When arranging these lines, there should be no more than a difference of 1 between positions.


The NCHL supports and enforces USA Hockey’s COACHING ETHICS CODE

The NCHL Disciplinary Board shall consider all suspensions set forth in the USA Hockey rules indefinite, pending review. Upon completion of a hearing all players involved (and their respective coaches) will be informed of the results. Should such notification not be made within (10) ten days of the incident, the suspension shall be considered automatically lifted except in the case of Gross misconduct or Match penalties which will be reviewed by the NYS Amateur Hockey Association within thirty (30) days.

When a match penalty or gross misconduct is assessed to a NYSAHA team member, the offender shall immediately be suspended from participating playing, coaching, officiating (on or off ice) in any USA Hockey event until the case has been dealt with by the proper authorities. The coach of such team shall report the incident to the Section Vice President within 48 hours. Failure to do so MAY result in IMMEDIATE suspension of the coach upon the Section Vice President's becoming aware of the situation. A mandatory hearing shall be held by the proper authorities and a decision made relative to any further disciplinary action within 30 days of the incident. If extenuating circumstances prevent the proper authorities from conducting the mandatory hearing, the offender shall automatically be reinstated after 30 days. If an association/league conducts an internal hearing, the association/league president or designee must notify the Section Vice President, in writing, of the results of said hearing within 72 hours.

Any official, within the New York District, assessing a match penalty or gross misconduct, must forward a written report, along with a copy of the score sheet, to his/her Local Administrative Supervisor of Officials within 48 hours. The Local Supervisor will immediately provide the information to the Section Vice President. Please note that the Local Supervisor will provide each official with a "New York District Official Incident Report". This is the only form that may be used when assessing either a match penalty or gross misconduct. Failure to correctly report the above mentioned penalties will result in the suspension of the official's certification.


Improper behavior such as an argumentative attitude, fighting, deliberate injury to another participant, foul or abusive language, or any other actions judged by any member of the NCHL professional staff as detrimental to the program shall be referred to the League General Manager. The individual(s) involved will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including expulsion from the program without reimbursement of any fees.

If in the opinion of the Sports Unit Specialist (NCHL Staff) on duty a coach is not providing equal ice time for all of the players on his bench, the offending team shall be given a warning. For subsequent violations of this rule, whether in the same game or at any other time in the season, the offending coach shall be assessed a game misconduct penalty and suspended indefinitely, pending review by the League Director. During any running time period the clock will not be stopped for any reason except when requested by the referee or game supervisor in the case of a serious injury to a player on the ice. While this may affect the length of the game, the safety and welfare of our participants is our first and foremost concern. Each game shall consist of three (3) eighteen-minute running time periods. While the players will change "on the fly", the coaches will still have the responsibility to see that all skaters receive equal playing time (see balanced play). The last two minutes of the game shall be played "stop time" if the goal differential between the teams is two goals or less. Overtime is not played during the regular season.