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General Information

  • All games will be played in accordance with USA Hockey rules.

  • All teams must be rostered with USA Hockey, Hockey Canada or the appropriate IIHF affiliate.

  • Teams are required to bring their official team roster or player cards, as well as their travel permit (if required by their governing body) to each game.

  • All teams are guaranteed 4 games.

  • Teams / Officials must be ready to start games up to 15 minutes early.

  • Rosters are frozen the first day of the tournament. A player must play at least 1 game prior to the quarterfinal or semifinal to be eligible to play in playoff games.

  • Rosters must be sent to the Tournament Director 30 days prior to start of tournament.

  • We ask that all team managers bring 3 roster stickers per game to put on the scoresheets.

  • Teams must be prepared to play Friday morning. Reserving a hotel room Thursday or Friday evening is strongly advised.

  • Some age groups may be split up into multiple divisions.

  • Schedule will be released 10 days prior to the tournament start date.

  • Your team will not be scheduled until full payment is received.

Playing Rules

  • NO TOURNAMENT OFFICIAL has the right to change a score sheet or reverse a call from a referee. Once game is over the score sheet is FINAL.

  • This event is sanctioned by USA Hockey.  Please refer to the USA Hockey playing rule book for all rules for 2021-2025.

  • Body checking will begin at the 2011 age group.

  • Minor penalties - 1:30 minutes / Major penalties - 4 minutes / Misconduct penalties - 8 minutes

  • Game Misconduct - Player will be ejected for the remainder of that game plus their next scheduled game.

  • Running time will be in effect during the 3rd period, only when a team is winning by 5 goals. Stop-time will resume once the score is within 2 goals. (Example 8-6)

  • No Timeouts are permitted in preliminary rounds.

  • One 30-second timeout is permitted in Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Finals.

  • Players and coaches should report to the arena at least one hour prior to each game.

  • A maximum of four team officials may be on the player's bench at one time.

    • Team Personnel are any non-playing persons not in uniform on the players’ bench. All such persons must be registered in the current season as a coach with USA Hockey, and must comply with coaching education requirements for the appropriate certification level as required by USA Hockey Coaching Education Program. One such person must be designated as the head coach. A player or goalkeeper on the roster who is unable to play, other than through suspension, may be on the players’ bench without being considered a team personnel if he is wearing the team jersey and all required head and face protective equipment.

  • The home team will wear white jerseys and visitors wear dark.

Scoring Rules

  • During preliminary play, 2 points will be awarded for a win, 1 point for a tie, and 0 points for a loss.  There will be no overtime.  During preliminary play, if the score is tied at the end of regulation time, the tie score will stand and each team shall be awarded one point for the game. 

  • Any forfeited games will be recorded as a 3-0 score. Any forfeited games affecting another team's playoff status, may be reviewed by the Tournament Director to determine which teams advance beyond preliminary round play. Use of ineligible players will disqualify a team from the tournament.

  • All games played by a disqualified team will be forfeited. No monies will be refunded.

  • Scores will be posted with a goal differential no greater than 7.

Game Format

  • 11-11-11 minute periods for Squirt Divisions.

  • 12-12-12 minute periods for Pee Wee Divisions.

  • 13-13-13 minute periods for Bantam Divisions.

  • No OT or Shootouts in Preliminary play.

  • There will be a 2 minute warm up for all games. The timekeeper will place an additional 3 minutes on the clock for the first period. The horn will buzz after 2 minutes. The teams then must be ready to play by the time the clock hits game time, as the time will continue to run once the open puck is dropped, and the clock will NOT STOP until the first whistle of the period. 

Ex: 12 min first period = 15 min on the clock, horn buzzes at 13 min, puck drops at 12 min with no clock stoppage.

Shootout Format

Home team will decide who will shoot first. Designated shooters for both teams will alternate shots. If the score remains tied after 3 rounds, new players will participate in a sudden death shootout. The players in the first group of 3 may not shoot again until all other eligible players on their team have had a turn OR the opposing team has used all of their shooters. Players with time remaining on their penalty are not eligible for the shootout. Goalies are not eligible.

Quarters, Semis, & Final

Please refer to Kreezee, or speak to a tournament official in order to determine the playoff format for each division. It is incumbent upon the team officials to confirm with a tournament representative whether or not their team has advanced beyond preliminary-round play prior to leaving the arena following their final preliminary-round game.

In the event a quarterfinal, semifinal or championship game should end in a tie, the tie will be broken in the following manner:

  • Overtime will be played during Quarterfinal, Semifinal, and Championship games only.

  • 5-minute sudden death (3-on-3) stopped time (switch ends).

  • 3 player “NHL Style” shootout. The Home team will decide if they shoot first or second.

  • Sudden-death shootout (both teams get to shoot each round).  Teams must select a different player for each phase of the shootout.

  • There is no OT or shootout in consolation games.


To determine teams advancing to the semifinal and championship rounds. If more than 2 teams are tied, as soon as the tie is broken, the tie breaker is reapplied to any remaining ties:

  1. Total Team Points

  2. Head-to-Head (two-team tiebreakers only)

  3. Goal Quotient = Goals For / (Goals For + Goals Against)

Example Below           

Team A:                16 GF        9GA        Quotient is 16/25 = .640

Team B:                19 GF        8 GA        Quotient is 19/27 = .704

                Team B advances due to higher overall quotient

   4. Least Goals Allowed

   5. Most Goals For

   6. Fewest Penalty Minutes

   7. Coin Toss


  • A zero tolerance for verbal abuse is in effect and will be enforced for all team officials, players and spectators.

  • Appropriate penalties will be assessed for disputing or arguing a decision of the officials, any visual demonstration of dissatisfaction, or for the use of obscene or vulgar language to anyone at any time during the tournament.

Anything not covered above shall be directed to the Tournament Directors. Nickel City Hockey will have the final say on any and all matters.

Anything not covered above shall be directed to the Tournament Directors. Nickel City Hockey will have the final say on any and all matters.

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