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Field Hockey Rule Changes, 2013

The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Field Hockey Rules Committee, at its January 9-11 meeting in Indianapolis, revised several rules aimed at reducing confusion and increasing the pace of play. All changes subsequently were approved by the NFHS Board of Directors. 

Effective with the 2013-14 season, a player who is issued a green card will be required to leave the field of play for two minutes (8-2-2a), and the player's team will play short-handed for the duration of the penalty. The game clock will stop while the official issues the card. Once the official calls for the clock to begin and the game to resume, the penalty time begins.

"The committee wanted to add some teeth to the issuance of the green card," said Elliot Hopkins, director of educational services and editor of the NFHS Field Hockey Rules Book. "Before, the green card was a warning, basically a slap on the wrist. The green card carrying a two-minute penalty will get the players' and coaches' attention."

Once a card is issued, Rule 8-2-2e defines the location of players serving penalty time for a green or yellow card as being at the scorer's table on the same side as their team bench. The rule allows coaches and officials to manage players easily, and avoids the risk of players not returning at the appropriate time.


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