© 2015 Eastern Pike Soccer League

LAWS

Rules of Competition

The EPS Rules Committee has the right to amend any rule during the course of the season, as well as make a decision on any situation not specifically covered by the written rules. The following rules of competition shall govern all playing divisions except in cases where specific modifications have been made.

* The results of all games are final. There are no protests.

Goal Differential Rule

While the league makes every effort to structure teams on a balanced basis, there will be games where one team has the opportunity to outscore the opponent by a large goal differential. EPS is a recreational soccer program that promotes sportsmanship and will not tolerate embarrassing displays of one-sided scores. Therefore, all games are subject to our Goal Differential Rule.

 

The Rule: If a team defeats another team by six (6) or more goals, the winning team will forfeit the win and the game will be recorded in the standings as a tie, meaning the winning team does not record a win and the losing team does not receive a loss.

 

Eastern Pike Soccer reserves the right to apply penalties to a coach for disregarding or repeatedly violating this rule which may include, but not be limited to, suspension from the next match or removal from their position for the balance of the season.

 

This rule puts great responsibility on our volunteer coaches so we have outlined some helpful guidelines for game day.

 

What to Do?

  1. Take Action Early - The biggest mistake coaches make is waiting until the score is 3-0 or 4-0. Most of the time you can tell early on in the game if your team is going to dominate. Start doing the things necessary to avoid an excessive goal differential early on in the game when the score is 2-0.

  2. Move Positions - Take your most effective goal scorer and place them on defense, have them play goalie or limit their playing time to one-half of the game. Place your weaker players on offense. This is a great opportunity to let players experience some positions they may not get to play on a regular basis.

  3. Play Short - Start pulling players off the field. Play 1 man down (e.g. pull a player from the attacking side not a defender) when you hit a two or three goal differential. Play two men down or even three down when you hit a three or four goal differential. If the opposing team closes the gap, you can always add players back on but you don t have to if it s a more competitive game.

  4. Impose Restrictions - Put some limitations on your players to challenge their skills and make it more difficult for them to score goals - particularly for older players. Examples include:

    • Shots can only be taken with the left (weaker)

    • Shots can only be taken outside of the 18-yard goal box.

    • Set a midfield boundary your offensive players cannot cross midfield.

    • Set a minimum number of passes before a shot tell you players they must have a set number of passes or touches before anyone can take a shot and you ve got to start over at 1 every time the opposing team touches the ball. 

    •  

Things to Avoid:

  1. If you are the team scoring the goals - screaming from the sidelines - "Don't score any more goals" or "Let them score". This will only further embarrass the opponent. Discuss the Goal Differential Rule with your team during a practice session and explain the steps you will be taking during the game to avoid unsportsmanlike conduct. But don't rely on your players (kids) to manage the game this is your responsibility.

  2. If you are the team giving up the goals - screaming from the sidelines "Let them Score" or "Kick it in our Goal". The opposing coach should be taking action to respect the Goal Differential Rule and promote good sportsmanship. Do not undermine the efforts of the opposing coach to respect this rule! This does nothing for your players and shows no respect for the game.

  3.  

Finally, two important reminders:

  1. Anticipate that last second goal. Don't stop scoring at the edge of the rule and find out one of your players scores in the final minute. If you beat the opponent by six or more goals, you violated the rule. The circumstances do not matter. As a coach, you need to anticipate.

  2. The goal differential rule applies to the score of the game at the conclusion of the match not during the course of the match or the score at halftime. The game is never stopped during the course of the match and the final score is the only score that matters.

 

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1.0 - Scheduled / Rescheduled Games

1.1 - All games shall be played in accordance with the published schedule. Exchanges of opponents will not be permitted. Games will not be rescheduled for any reason.

1.2 - League officials are authorized to postpone any game, prior to its commencement, due to inclement weather or field conditions.

1.3 - The referee can abandon a game at any time due to climate or field conditions, or for any other reason set forth in the rules.

1.4 - If a game is abandoned by a league official or referee before the first half has been completed, the game shall be rescheduled in its entirety. If the first half has been completed, the game will be considered an official game and the results will stand.

1.5 - A fifteen minute grace period, from the scheduled start time of the game, will be allowed for the appearance of the assigned referees. In the event that neither referee appears, the coaches must contact the on-field Referee Coordinator. Games played under these circumstances will be valid.

 

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2.0 - Game Ball

2.1 -

Division                                              Ball Size

 

 

 

 

 

2.2 - Both teams must have a ball available for game use. The home team shall supply the game ball.

 

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3

4

4

4

5

U-4

U-6

U-8

U-11

U-14

3.0 - Players

3.1 - The following number of players will take the field for each division:

 

Division                                              Number of Players on the Field

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.2 - A team which appears at the scheduled start of the game with less than the required minimum number of players will be given a grace period of fifteen (15) minutes to field the necessary number of players. Thereafter, if the team is unable to field the required number of players, the game will be declared a forfeit. (This grace period only applies towards the fielding the minimum number of players and not towards fielding the maximum number of players.) A scrimmage game may be played if all parties are in accord.

3.3 - If, during the course of the game, a team falls below the required minimum number of players the game will be abandoned and the matter will be referred to the Rules Committee. The decision of the Rules Committee will be final.

3.4 All players must play at least half of every game, though not necessarily continuously, with the following exceptions:

Injury

Severe disciplinary problems

Consistent, un excused absences from practice (school practices are considered excused absences

Unexcused lateness to a game; here the player will be deemed to have played in the part of the game he/she missed.

3.5 - Any coach who intends to keep a player out of a game or have them play less than half a game, must consult with their division coordinator prior to the game. 

 

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All

8

8

8

11

U-4

U-6

U-8

U-11

U-14

4.0 - Substitutions

4.1 - After obtaining permission from the referee, either team may substitute when play is stopped except for free kicks.

 

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5.0 - Uniforms and Equipment

5.1 - All players are required to wear their uniform shirt, shorts and socks (U-4 and U-6 only receives a jersey). Street apparel shall not be worn by the players (except for U-4 and U-6 Division players).

5.2 - All players are required to wear shin guards beneath their socks and cleats or the player can not play in the game, no exceptions!

5.3 - The goalkeeper must wear a jersey or pinny that is a different color from that of either team. The goalkeeper may wear gloves.

5.4 - In cool weather sweatpants and sweatshirts may be worn beneath the team uniform. Hooded sweatshirts must be tucked beneath the uniform shirt.

5.5 - The following are prohibited and may never be worn:

  • Metal cleats of any kind.

  • Sharp or badly worn cleats.

  • Jewelry, such as rings, watches, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, pins (this applies to those items made of rope as well).

  • Metal or plastic hair clips or hair beads.

  • No orthopedic braces with exposed metal or hard plastic.

  • No hard casts (wrist, arm, etc.)

  • Helmets, baseball caps or visors.

  • Non-prescription glasses or sunglasses.

All permitted devices worn for medical purposes must be approved by the league prior to the game.

 

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6.0 - Duration of the Game

6.1 - All games, except for U-4 and U-6, will consist of four quarters of equal length with one minute intervals after the first and third quarters and a five minute interval after the second quarter.

6.2 - The duration of the games is a follows:

Division                                                    Length of Game

 

 

 

 

6.3 - All games will be played with running time. The clock will only be stopped at the end of each quarter and half. It will not be stopped at any other time except for a serious injury to one of the players and the referee calls a time out. The referee is the official timekeeper of every game.

 

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U-8

U-11

U-14

12 minute quarters

15 minute quarters

30 minute halves

7.0 - Start of the Game

7.1 - A coin toss determines the direction of play and possession of the ball.

7.2 - The visiting team calls the toss. The winner of the toss shall have the choice of either possession of the ball or direction of play.

7.3 - Ball possession and direction of play shall be reversed at the start of the third quarter.

7.4 - A kickoff is used at the start of the game and after a goal is scored. At the moment of kickoff all players must be within their half of the field.

7.5 - The ball is kicked from the center of the field and is in play once the ball has traveled its own circumference forward. The kicker cannot play the ball again until it has been touched by another player.

 

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8.0 - Ball In and Out of Play

8.1 - The ball is out of play when it wholly crosses the goal line or touch line, whether on the ground or in the air, or when the referee has stopped play.

8.2 - The ball is in play at all other times including:

  • When it rebounds off a cross-bar or goal post.

  • When it touches an official on the field.

  • When the ball travels its circumference after a kickoff.

  • When a drop ball touches the ground.

  • When a throw-in breaks the plane of a touch line.

8.3 - A drop ball occurs when:

  • Opponents simultaneously cause a ball to go out of bounds.

  • The ball becomes deflated.

  • Following the temporary suspension of play for an injury or unusual situation and neither team has clear possession of the ball.

  • Opponents commit simultaneous fouls of the same degree.

8.4 - The spot of a drop ball is:

  • Where the ball becomes dead.

  • Five yards inside of the boundary line.

8.5 The drop ball is held between two opponents and cannot be played until it touches the ground. Should the ball be played before it touches the ground the referee shall drop the ball again. If the same player continues to play the ball before it hit s the ground, he/she will be replaced by another player. Other players may be positioned anywhere, provided they do not interfere with the play.

 

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9.0 - Scoring

9.1 - A goal is scored when the ball wholly passes over the goal line, between the goal posts and under the crossbar. One point is awarded for each goal.

9.2 - A goal may be scored during play directly from

  • Direct kick.

  • Corner Kick.

  • Drop ball.

  • Goalkeepers punt or throw.

9.3 - A goal may not be scored during play directly from a throw-in.

 

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10.0 - Free Kicks

10.1 - Free kicks are classified as either direct or indirect.

  • A direct free kick is one from which a goal can be scored directly by the kicker without another player first touching the ball.

  • an indirect free kick is one from which a goal cannot be scored directly by the kicker - the ball must first touch another player before it enters the goal - this player can be from either team

10.2 - Free kicks shall be taken from the point of an infraction with the following exceptions:

  • If an indirect free kick is awarded to the attacking team in the opponents goal area the kick must be taken from the goal line at the point nearest to where the infraction occured.

  • If a direct kick is awarded to the attacking team in the opponents goal area the kick becomes a penalty kick and is taken from the penalty line.

  • If a coach or player from the sideline enters the field without permission an indirect kick will be awarded to the opposing team at the place where the ball was when play was halted.

  • If play was halted for an injury and one team had clear possession of the ball, an indirect kick will be awarded to that team at the place where the ball was when play was halted.

  • If play was halted because of misconduct by any individual on the sideline, an indirect free kick will be awarded to the opposing team at the place where the ball was when play was halted.

10.3 - When a player is taking a free kick outside his/her own team s penalty area, all opposing players must be at least 10yards from the ball in every direction, unless they are standing on their own goal line between the goal posts.

10.4 - When a player is taking a free kick within his/her own team s penalty area, all opposing players must be outside the penalty area and at least 10yards from the ball in every direction. All free kicks taken within the penalty area by the defending team must clear the penalty area before the ball can be touched by another player. Free kicks that do not leave the penalty area will be taken again.

10.5 - When taking a free kick, the ball must be stationary when kicked and is in play once it travels its own circumference. If not done correctly the kick shall be taken again.

10.6 - Once in play, the ball cannot be kicked a second time by the kicker until it has been touched by another player from either team. A violation of this rule will result in an indirect kick being awarded to the opposing team at the point of the infraction.

 

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11.0 - Off-Sides

11.1 - Offside position is defined as the following, "if the player does not have the ball and there are less than two opposing players between them and the opposing teams goal line." Usually one of these players is the goalie of the opposing team but it does not have to be. It is not an offside offense in itself to be in an offside position.A player is not in an offside position if the player is:

  • In their own half of the field of play.

  • Level or even with the second to last opponent.

  • Level or even with the last two opponents.

  • In an offside position during a throw-in, corner kick, goal kick or drop ball.

11.2 - Offsides occurs when the player is in an offside position when the ball is kicked or played, not when it is received. A player in an offside position is only penalized if, at the moment the ball touches or is played by a teammate, the player is, in the opinion of the referee, involved in active play by:

  • Interfering with play or;

  • Interfering with an opponent or;

  • Gaining an advantage by being in that position.

11.3 - The penalty for an offside call is an indirect kick from the spot of the infraction, unless the infraction occurs within the goal area in which case the kick shall be taken from anywhere within the goal area.

 

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12.0 - Fouls and Misconduct

12.1 - A Direct free kick is awarded to the opposing team if a player commits any of the following fouls:

  • Attempts to kick or kicks, strikes or jumps at an opponent

  • Trips an opponent

  • When a goalie attempts to or strikes or pushes an opponent

  • When a player other than the goalie plays the ball with their hands in the penalty box

  • Pushes or holds an opponent

  • Unfairly charges an opponent (feet of attacker leave the ground)

  • Charges the goalie, who has possession of the ball

12.2 - An Indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team when a player commits any of the following fouls:

  • If the ball is played twice by the kicker following a kickoff, free kick,goal kick (that leaves the penalty area), a corner kick or by the thrower of a throw-in before.

  • It has been played by another player.

  • Offisides.

  • Fairly charges an opponent when neither is within playing distance of the ball.

  • Interference - a player without the ball deliberately obstructs an opponent who is attempting to play the ball or interferes with a goalies attempt to release the ball into play.

  • If a player kicks or attempts to kick the ball while in possession of the goalie.

  • Dangerous play - such a kicking above the waist or playing the ball from a prone position on the field.

  • If a goalie holds onto the ball for more than six (6) seconds before releasing the ball into play.

  • If the goalie plays the ball a second time after releasing it into play before it has been played by another player.

  • If a player deliberately passes the ball to their goalie and the goalie plays the ball with his/her hands - a goalie may use their feet to play the ball under these circumstances.

12.3 - A yellow card will be issued to players or coaches for an infraction of any of the rules of good sportsmanship, including but not limited to:

  • Arguing with the referee.

  • Disruptive behavior.

  • Slide tackling.

12.4 - A red card will be issued to players or coaches under the following circumstances:

  • A second infraction of the rules of good sportsmanship when committed by a player or coach who had previously received a yellow card.

  • When a first offense is severe, flagrant or of an extremely dangerous nature.

  • Use of profanity.

  • Slide tackling from behind.

  • If a red or yellow card is issued, coaches must identify all persons receiving yellow or red cards to the referees.

12.5 - When the offender receiving the red card is a player or coach, he/she will be expelled from the game and must leave the field immediately. Failure to do so will result in an abandonment of the game by the referee and the game will be declared a forfeit.

12.6 - Any person expelled from a game may not participate in the team s next game. Failure to abide by this rule will result in the forfeiture of that game.

12.7 - Where the offending person is a spectator, the spectator will receive the card. A red card issued to a spectator will result in ejection from the premises.

12.8 - Any game abandoned due to the refusal of a coach to field a team, will result in a forfeiture of that game.

 

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13.0 - Penalty Kicks

13.1 - A penalty kick is awarded when the opposing team commits an infraction, which would normally result in a direct kick, in the their own penalty area.

13.2 - When a penalty kick is taken the following rules must be adhered to:

  • All players except the kicker and the opposing goalie must be outside the penalty area and at least ten (10) yards from the penalty line.

  • The opposing goalie must stand on the goal line until the ball is kicked from a stationary spot on the penalty mark.

  • The goalie can only move horizontally along the goal line.

  • The kicker cannot kick the ball until he/she receives a signal from the referee.

  • After the kick, the kicker cannot play the ball a second consecutive time.

  • Once the ball has moved its circumference, it is in play.

13.3 - The following chart refers to violations committed during a penalty kick:

 

Violator                                            Result                                Penalty Award

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Goal Not Scored

Goal Scored

Goal Scored

Goal Not Scored

Re-kick awarded to kicking team

Infraction waived - goal stands

Kicking team must take the kick again

If the ball went over the goal line then a goal kick is awarded;

if the ball went into play then an indirect kick is awarded to the defending team.

Defensive Player

Defensive Player

Offensive Player

Offensive Player

14.0 - Throw-In

14.1 - A throw-in is awarded when the opposing team last touches or plays a ball before the entire ball passes beyond the touch line, either in the air or on the ground.

14.2 - The following must be adhered to when making a throw-in. A violation of these rules will result in the throw-in being awarded to the opposing team:

  • The throw must take place at the spot where the ball went out of bounds.

  • The player taking the throw must face the field of play and have both feet behind the touch line when releasing the ball.

  • The player must use both hands with equal force and deliver the ball from behind and over their head in one continuous motion.

  • The player may not twist their torso to change the direction of the throw. (The players body must stay straight).

14.3 - If the throw-in fails to clear the plane and enter the field of play, it shall be re-thrown.

14.4 - If the player taking the throw-in plays the ball a second time before it has been touched by another player, an indirect kick will be awarded to the opposing team at the spot of the infraction.

 

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15.0 - Goal Kick

15.1 - A goal kick is awarded to the defending team when the opposing team last touches or plays the ball before it wholly crosses the goal line, in the air or on the ground - excluding that portion within the goal posts or under the cross bar.

15.2 - The following must be adhered to when taking a goal kick:

  • The ball shall be kicked from any spot within the goal area.

  • The ball must be stationary when kicked.

  • All players on the opposing team must be outside the penalty area.

  • The ball cannot be played by either team until it has cleared the penalty area .

15.3 - If the ball fails to clear the penalty area, the goal kick will be re-taken.

15.4 - If, after clearing the penalty area, the kicker plays the ball a second time before it has been played by another player, an indirect kick will be awarded to the opposing team at the spot of the infraction.

 

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16.0 - Corner Kick

16.1 - A corner kick is awarded to the attacking team when the opposing team last touches or plays the ball before it wholly crosses the goal line, in the air or on the ground - excluding that portion within the goal posts or under the cross bar.

16.2 - The following must be adhered to when taking a corner kick:

  • The corner kick shall be taken from corner of the field nearest the point where the ball went out of play.

  • All players of the opposing team must be at least 10 yards from the ball until it is kicked.

  • The ball must move its full circumference before it is in play.

16.3 - If, after moving forward its full circumference, the kicker plays the ball a second time before it has been touched by another player, an indirect kick will be awarded to the opposing team at the spot of the infraction.

 

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17.0 - Slide Tackling

17.1 - Slide tackling is prohibited in all divisions of Eastern Pike Soccer. Any player making a slide tackle will receive a Yellow Card and a warning from the Referee. Should the same player make another slide tackle in the game, they will receive a Red Card, resulting in Ejection from the game. Any player receiving a Red Card will also be ineligible for the next game played.

17.2 - Slide tackling from behind is prohibited in all divisions of Eastern Pike Soccer, and will not be tolerated. Any player making a slide tackle from behind will receive a Red Card, and be immediately ejected from the game. That player will be ineligible for the next game played. That player will be reported to the Rec Director.

17.3 - No other player will be allowed to replace the ejected player, and the team will play minus that player for the remainder of the game.

17.4 - At this age, players should remain on their feet (except for the goalkeeper) or going for a header. This is for the safety of the players.

 

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18.0 - Aggressive Play

18.1 - Overly aggressive play is not allowed in any division of Eastern Pike Soccer. Intentional Fouls such as tripping, slide tackles, trying to injure your opponent, foul language, challenging the referee, etc. will not be tolerated. Such play will result in warnings, Yellow and Red Cards, based upon the severity of the foul, as noted above.

 

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19.0 - Code of Conduct

19.1 - Please refer to our Code of Conduct information on the website. Poor conduct by parents, coaches or players will not be tolerated.

19.2 - Poor sportsmanship, bad language, challenging taunts, etc. take away from the game, and are in direct violation of what Eastern Pike Soccer stands for. Remember, we are out here for the kids to learn and play the game of Soccer. Parents and Coach's should be encouraging and positive. Respect the Referee, as He/She is in charge on the field of play. Calls may be missed, or sometimes called incorrectly, and that happens in all sports. Verbal attacks or challenges of the Referee may result in game stoppage, warnings and Yellow or Red cards being issued, and if serious enough, forfeit of the game. This must be approved by the Recreation Director in charge.

19.3 - Should a parent receive a red card, they will be expected to leave the field immediately. If this happens, and the child must leave also, the coach may substitute another player. Should a parent ever receive a red card, the referee and coach will report this information to the Recreation Director, who will report to the Eastern Pike Soccer Board of Directors for review. Should this happen more than once, the Board may take action, which may include removal of the child from their team for the remainder of the season.

19.4 - Should a Coach receive a Red Card, the Referee will report this to the Rec Director, who will report to the Eastern Pike Board of Directors. Should this happen again in the same season, the Coach may be restricted from coaching for the remainder of the season.

19.5 - Players receiving yellow and/or red card(s) is addressed above in the rules.

 

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