Revised: 4/8/85, 4/7/86, 4/9/88, 4/4/89, No 1989 Revision, 4/1/91, 4/5/92, 4/5/93, No 1994 Revision, 4/3/95, 4/28/96, No 1997 Revision, 4/2/98, No 1999 Revision, 3/21/00, No 2001 Revision, 03/17/02, 03/06/03, 03/01/04, 04/10/05, No 2006 Revision, 07/01/07, 01/20/08, 06/06/08, 02/26/09, No 2010 Revision, 02/14/11, 02/19/12, 02/24/13, No 2014 Revision, 03/17/15, 03/13/16, No 2018 Revision, 3/18/18
1. This league shall be known as the New Hampshire Soccer Conference.
2. The purpose of this league shall be to promote the game of soccer in New Hampshire.
3. The business of this league shall be transacted by the president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer, council members, and a delegate from each member team.
4. The annual meeting of this league will be held at the call of its officers prior to April. Special meetings may be called by the president or a majority of the member clubs at any time. Representatives of ten teams shall represent a quorum.
1. The officers of this league shall be elected by ballot at the annual meeting of the league. They shall hold office for one year and be eligible for re-election.
2. The president shall preside at all meetings of this league. He shall approve all bills. He shall appoint all committees, the Commissioner of Scheduling and records and the Commissioner of Officials. He shall be entitled to vote in case of a tie vote. He shall be an ex-officio member of all committees.
3. The president shall appoint a vice-president to exercise the powers of the president in the absence of the president.
4. The secretary shall keep a record of the minutes of all meetings and shall have charge of all property of the league.
5. The treasurer shall have charge of all money of the league. He shall keep a true and accurate record of all receipts and disbursements. He shall submit a full report of all transactions at the annual meeting and at other times as requested by the president.
6. The president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, and 3 council members of this league shall constitute the executive committee to represent this league on all matters requiring attention. A majority of the members will constitute a quorum. Their decisions may be subject to appeal to the league membership.
7. A Commissioner of Officials shall be appointed annually by the league president. He shall serve as a liaison between the league and the officials' organization. He shall attend league meetings. He shall be responsible for assigning officials to league games. He shall be paid an annual stipend as voted by the members at the annual meeting. He shall attend the executive committees as requested by the president.
8. A Commissioner of Scheduling and Records shall be appointed annually by the league president and shall attend league meetings. He shall attend executive meetings as requested by the president. He shall be responsible for approving the team and league schedules and communicating this information to the team representatives and the Commissioner of Officials. He shall be responsible for collecting, collating, and communicating the game results. He shall be paid an annual stipend as voted by the members at the annual meeting.
9. Because the league considers the team representatives to be team leaders, team representatives shall be responsible for the following:
A. Level of team sportsmanship and conduct on the field.
B. Informing team members of rules and regulations.
C. Ensuring that the team abides by league rules and regulations.
D. Ensuring team financial obligations are met on time.
E. Ensuring the home field is playable.
F. Ensuring that the team is present for home and away games.
G. Handling necessary schedule changes and being the contact point for setting up the play-off schedule.
H. Notifying team members of any executive committee decisions affecting them.
I. Submitting home game scores and recaps online within 24 hours of the completion of the match.
J. Preparing accurate game rosters prior to each game.
K. Submitting team roster online prior to the deadline set by the league president.
10. Member clubs shall be entitled to representation by two delegates with one vote at all league meetings.
11. The league membership fee shall be determined at the annual meeting by the league members. This fee shall be paid to the treasurer upon team registration. No unregistered team shall be scheduled for any game.
12. By-laws may be amended at the annual meeting by a two-thirds majority. Proposed by-law changes must be submitted to the league president in writing by February 01, so that they can be included in the call to the annual meeting.
1. Rules of the game, as promulgated by the NCAA one year prior to the start of the NHSC season, shall govern this league with these exceptions:
A. Numbered uniforms shirts are mandatory. If opposing teams' uniform colors match, the visiting team is responsible for changing during regular season games. The team with the lower seed is responsible for changing in the play-off games.
B. In case of inclement weather, considered dangerous by the referees, at least 45 minutes of a game must be played in order to be counted as a complete game, during the regular season. At least 70 minutes of a game must be played in order to be counted as a complete game during the post season. Games not reaching the 45 or 70 minute respectively, shall be replayed (schedule permitting- ONLY REGULAR SEASON) from the beginning with a zero - zero score. Game delay will be a minimum of one-half hour in duration. Referee decision will be final.
C. Regular season games end in a tie at the end of the two regulation periods.
D. Play-off games that are tied at the end of regulation time will be settled by 5 player penalty kicks. Only the championship matches will have two ten minutes sudden victory overtime periods. If the championship match is still tied at the conclusion of these overtime periods, the 5 player penalty kick tiebreaker will be used.
E. Substitutes may enter from their team area when beckoned by the referee. A player be substituted does not have to be off the field prior to the substitutes' entrance.
1. Individuals will be ineligible to play in the NHSC if:
A. They have been suspended by the league.
B. They have not been included on the game roster at game time.
C. They have not been included in the team roster online.
D. They are a current professional player.
Individuals will be ineligible to play in the NHSC playoffs if:
A. They have not participated in a minimum of 5 regular season games. (Participated is defined as having actually set foot on the field and played during the match.)
B. Special exemption to the above rule shall be granted for extenuating circumstances by the league president.
2. Team rosters shall:
A. Be of an unlimited number of players.
B. Consist of names and jersey numbers.
C. Be posted online before the date(s) set forth by the Commissioner of Schedules. (Violation may result in immediate team suspension and forfeiture of scheduled games.)
D. Have the ability to add players up to July 1st.
Team game rosters shall:
A. Be a subset of the team roster online.
B. Consist of names and jersey numbers of players dressed and ready to play in the impending match.
C. Include players previously listed on another team's registration as long as the team(s) are in a different division. EXCEPTION: Goalkeepers may play on more than one team in the same division. (This rule only applies to the regular season.)
D. Be held by the referees for the purpose of verifying tournament eligibility for each player.
E. Any team found guilty of playing an ineligible player shall forfeit the game(s) in which he/she played.
Postseason team game rosters shall:
A. Be a subset of the team roster online.
B. Consist of names and jersey numbers of players dressed and ready to play in the impending match.
C. List any player(s) who have played for more than one team in a different division in the same season are eligible to play for both teams during the postseason.
D. Any team found guilty of playing an ineligible player shall forfeit the game(s) in which he played.
3. The following applies to behavior on the field or the field site:
Each Team Representative should choose his/her team members carefully, as all team members will suffer the consequences of any disciplinary action taken by the NHSC Executive Board against a team for violation of the rules. A Team Representative is responsible for actions by an individual member of the team as well as for spectators directly related to that team. This includes conduct of all players and spectators before, during, and after a game. If a team does not maintain a "2.74" average throughout the regular season the team may not be eligible for the playoffs at the end of the season.
A. For any team receiving a red card or cards, the Team Rep or appointed Team Rep, in one’s absence, shall notify the League Office and League Assigner indicating the player’s name and number who was sent off. Failure by the Team to notify the League of the sent off player(s) could result in game forfeiture, extended game suspension for sent off player(s) or both. A second failure to notify the League of red card(s) received may result in team suspension.
B. Any player found guilty of assaulting or threatening a referee shall be suspended from the league for at least 1 calendar year.
C. Any player ejected from a game for violent acts such as, but not limited to, fighting or intent to injure, shall be immediately suspended from the league until an executive committee hearing is held.
D. Notification shall be given to the team representative and/or the player. Receipt of the notification by either person, shall affect the suspension. Nothing in this rule shall prevent the executive committee from suspending a player for flagrant misconduct.
E. Teams, upon accumulation of 5 red cards, shall be suspended for the remainder of the season. All remaining games on the schedule will count as forfeits, just as the game in which the fifth red card was given.
4. Teams shall play according to their official schedule.
No schedule changes may be made after the deadline has passed without prior approval by the Commissioner of Schedules. Any team that cancels a scheduled game shall receive an immediate loss in the standings, regardless of when the cancellation was submitted to the League. Teams may choose to reschedule the game; however, this rescheduled game will not remove the loss received from the original canceled game. Clubs failing to compete and/or complete any game shall forfeit the game. The team forfeiting will pay the required $160.00/$140.00 league fee, as well as terminate their remaining games until payment is received in the league office. All teams must play a minimum of ten games (Senior Division) or eight games (High School Division) to be eligible for post-season competition unless granted by the league President. Any number of games less than 10 will result in a loss in the standings for each game needed to reach 10.
In the event that a game is to be canceled with fewer than 48 hours notice, the team(s) responsible for the default is (are) liable for all referees' fees unless the Commissioner of Officials is able to determine all assigned referees were not notified regarding the cancellation. Responsibility for reporting the cancellation within the system lies with the home team. Responsibility for ensuring assigned officials are notified of the cancellation lies with the team canceling the game.
The home team is responsible for field availability and is responsible for all referees' fees in the case that the field is unavailable at game time. Exceptions to this are acts of God.
5. The league to be organized into six reasonably balanced male divisions, four female divisions and one Co-Ed division. In determining division placement, the following guidelines will be employed (all divisions will be predicated by actual number of teams registered to play):
Men’s Division One - A majority of college level and/ or elite players.
Men’s Division Two - A mix of college and non college aged players.
Men’s Division Three - Division Three- Over 30 years of age. Players must turn 30 during the regular season to be eligible
Men’s Over 40 Division – Over 40 years of age. Players must turn 40 during the regular season to be eligible. Men’s Over 40 Teams may have two (2) players between 35 and 40 on their roster. Under 40 players must turn 35 before the start of the season to be eligible.
Adult Co-Ed Division – Adult 11v11 Open Division. Teams must have three female players on the field or field players reduced by number of missing female players . Teams must have at least one female player on the field or team will forfeit the game.
Men’s Division Four (HS varsity players) - High school players who will be juniors and seniors during the fall season 2016 or younger. (June '18 Graduates are considered STILL IN high school.)
Men’s Division Five (HS junior varsity players) - Designed for players who are in upper middle school, freshman, or sophomores in high school. Intended for the sub varsity level player.
Women’s Division One - A mix of college level and/ or varsity high school elite players.
Women’s Division Two - (HS varsity players) - A combination of post high school players and high school players who will be seniors during the fall season 2016 or younger. (June '18 Graduates are considered STILL IN high school.)
Women’s Division Three - Division Three- Over 30 years of age. A maximum of 2 players from age 25 to 30 may be on the field at any one time.
Women’s Division Four - (HS junior varsity players) - Designed for players who are in upper middle school, freshman, or sophomores in high school. Intended for the sub varsity level player.
*Divisions that have more than 16 teams may be separated into regions. Separate playoffs will be played for each region and the winners of each region will play in the semi finals matches. The two winners of the semi final games will compete for the championship.
Teams rated highly in Division Two the previous season may be placed in Division One the following season. The last four teams in Division One may be placed in Division Two the following season. The executive committee will make final decisions after the scheduling meeting.
6. The standing of the teams in the league shall be determined by the number of average points obtained during the season. No MORE than 50% of a team's games shall be out of their division.
All wins will be worth 3 points.
All ties will be worth 1 point.
For playoff berths, ties between teams will be broken as follows:
A. Sportsmanship Rating
B. Record vs. each other
C. Record vs. same opponents
D. Goals for vs. goals against
E. Coin toss
7. Sportsmanship: Sportsmanship is a vital component for success in every contest. Participants are expected to display good sportsmanship toward opponents and the officials at all times. The NHSC Executive Board has developed the Sportsmanship Rating System with the purpose of making each individual participant responsible for his/her actions while participating in any NHSC event. The Rating System is based on the following criteria:
4 Points - Excellent Conduct and Sportsmanship: Players cooperate fully with the officials and opposing team members. If necessary, the Team Representative converses calmly with officials about rule interpretations and calls.
3 Points - Good Conduct and Sportsmanship: Team members verbally complain about some decisions made by the officials and/or show minor dissension which may or may not merit a Yellow Card. Teams that receive one Yellow Card will receive no higher than a 3.0 rating.
2 Points - Average Conduct and Sportsmanship: Team shows verbal dissent towards officials and/or the opposing team which may or may not merit a Yellow Card. Team Representative exhibits minor control over his/her teammates, but is in control of him/herself. Teams receiving multiple Yellow Cards will receive no higher than a 2.0 rating.
1 Point - Below Average Conduct and Sportsmanship: Team constantly comments to the officials and/or the opposing team from the field and/or sidelines. The team’s Team Representative exhibits little or no control over teammates or him/herself. Teams that receive one Red Card will receive no higher than a 1.0 rating.
0 Points - Poor Conduct and Sportsmanship: Team is completely uncooperative. Team Representative has no control over teammates and/or him/herself. Any of them causing a game to be forfeited, other than by not showing, or any team that receives multiple Red Cards may receive an 0.0 rating.
All teams that have maintained a minimum of 2.75 sportsmanship average are eligible for playoffs. The preceding sportsmanship rules will be assessed all throughout the Playoff Tournament. If a team receives between 2.0 and 2.74 rating they must contact the league office and discuss the rating prior to the last five days of the regular season. A decision by the Executive Board will be made at that time as to whether the team will be allowed to continue participation in playoffs. If the team is allowed to continue they must receive between 2.75 and 4.0 rating in the remaining playoff games or be eliminated, regardless of the game outcome.
After the final day of the regular season for each specific division, any team that has a rating below 1.99 will be eliminated from the playoffs, regardless of their regular season record.
The NHSC Executive Board reserves the right, based upon players or teams actions, to enforce any additional penalties against teams receiving Red/Yellow Cards throughout both regular season play and the playoff tournaments.
Ratings will be done by the game officials after the game is completed. Ratings will be posted in the standings.
8. Protests: Two copies of each protest must be forwarded to the league president within 24 hours after the game being protested. Any protest relative to the grounds, goal posts, or other appurtenances of the game will not be considered unless such protest has been lodged with the referee prior to the start of the game. A fee of $25.00 must accompany each protest, $15.00 of which is refundable if the protest is upheld. The point of protest must be indicated on the referee's game report card. The league secretary shall send a copy of the protest to the club protested against. As soon as practicable, the President shall convene a meeting of the Executive Committee to consider the protest. Each club may support its case in any appropriate manner. The Executive Committee may request statements from the referees or others as necessary.
9. An official referee shall be in charge of league games. The referee shall be affiliated member of the New Hampshire Soccer Referee Association (NHSOA.) The referee(s') fee(s) shall be established by the league prior to the season. Each club shall pay the established fee to one referee prior to the game. If a referee fails to appear for a game, the teams shall split the cost of 150% of the single referee's fee. The referee shall be subject to disciplinary action by the league. The league shall have the power to remove any official's name from their list of approved officials and/or require an official to be reexamined before working other league games.
10. Playoffs: The Executive Committee will determine the number of teams from each division to make the playoffs. All games except the Semi-Final and Finals shall be played at the field of the higher seeded team. Semi-Final and Championship games will be played at a neutral site, if available; else fields of the higher seeded teams will be used. All games scheduled to be played on Sunday will only be played Saturday or Sunday. The higher seeded team will pick Saturday or Sunday and time. The game date and time must be in the league office prior to Friday at 6:00AM or both teams will forfeit and be out of post season play. All games scheduled to be played on Wednesday will only be played Wednesday or Thursday. The higher seeded team will pick Wednesday or Thursday and time. The game date and time must be in the league office prior to Tuesday at 6:00AM or both teams will forfeit and be out of post season play.
Midweek tournament games in which the distance to travel exceeds 75 miles may be played at a neutral site (unless agreed upon by both teams). Games that require a neutral site field (distance over 75 miles one-way for the lower seeded team) are the home team’s responsibility. If the home team fails to get a field, the away team (lower seeded team) will advance in the post season. The game location WILL NOT have a distance traveled by either team of more than 20 miles discrepancy, when possible. (In other words - one team cannot travel 20 miles and the other travel 55 miles.) The game location MUST be approved by the league president prior to Monday at 9:00PM. The game must be approved and finalized prior to Tuesday at 6:00AM or both teams will forfeit and be out of post season play.
11. No changes or additions to these rules shall be made except at an official meeting of the league. A majority vote of the members present will be necessary for any changes.
12. The Executive Committee shall act upon all matters not covered by these rules. Any decision made by the executive committee under these conditions shall be subject by appeal to the general membership.