Table Manners

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Scorers don't always keep score

(Worry about this for varsity games.  Relax your expectations for sub-varsity contests.)

Has the home team provided a scorebook and a scorer?  Does the scorer understand his/her responsibilities?  Do you know your responsibilities? 

The home team scorer is, by default, the official scorer.  In the absence of a home team scorer, the Referee may designate an official scorer, probably the visiting team’s scorer.

Most importantly, the official scorer is required by rule to keep a written record of:
A] Goals.  Also, to check the score with the Referee at the end of each period.
B] Penalties.  Also, to notify the Referee if any player accumulates 5 or more minutes of personal foul penalty time.

What do you do if there is no scorer? 

(Answer = fall back on the historic method of using your scorecard, as described in the rulebook!)  The officials are also required to keep a record of the score and to check & approve the score with the scorer at the end of each period.  Once the officials leave the game site, the score is approved.

In practice, you should double-check your scorecard against the visible scoreboard throughout the game.  If you notice a discrepancy, then resolve the discrepancy immediately.  If there is no discrepancy, then the score is approved.

The rules of boys’ lacrosse have not kept up with how the game is administered.  They were written before visible clocks, much less scoreboards, were common.  Today, the visible scoreboard is operated by the timekeeper.  The scorer should be ensuring that the score on the board is accurate at every goal.  If both teams have a scorer, then there should be three people at the table who all agree on the score.  Not to mention the 2 or 3 officials!

How about this situation?  There was no scorebook at the table, so there was no scorer.  The timekeeper put up one goal incorrectly.  Did the crew notice?  The reporters standing at the table mentioned her error and she corrected it.  Good catch!

What else could go wrong?  What if the scoreboard apparatus malfunctions or loses power?  What if some player had accumulated 5 minutes of personal foul time and should foul out?  You need a scorer!

Timekeepers don't always keep time

Has the home team provided a clock and a timekeeper?  Does the timekeeper know his/her responsibilities?  Do you know that you are NOT expected to keep time?

Timekeepers have been known to not stop or not start the clock on a whistle.  The Off official should look at the clock after every whistle, until there is confidence in the timekeeper, then periodically throughout the game.

Does the timekeeper know how to release penalties?  Does the timekeeper know how to manage running time?  What will the timekeeper do if the scoreboard or clock fails?  If you are the Referee, you need to ask before every game!

Preventive officiating - make sure that the timekeeper and scorer know their responsibilities before the game.  Check the score!

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