Tuesday rundown

January 15, 2008 on 11:58 am | In analysis | 2 Comments

Nice work by Paul and J.C. at the Star-Ledger in today’s notebook: check it out here. A few things beg for a comment from yours truly, however.

Madison I’m glad somebody up there finally hopped on this story and got answers straight from the mouths of the coach and athletic director. However, the Ledger was not clear about the consequences. The article never states what rule Madison violated in the process. My real question is: has Madison been precluded from the state tournament for exceeding the limit on game disqualifications or because it refused to complete an athletic contest? The former seems the more likely, since I do not know of any NJSIAA statute that prevents teams from forfeiting games.

Shootouts Anyone who has talked to me about this issue knows how strongly I feel. But let me quote the article, which quoted the inimitable Paul McInnis:

“For teams that took part in a game-deciding shootout in a tournament this season, Paul McInnis, the NJSIAA state tournament director and ice hockey rules interpreter, has a message: Don’t count it as a tie. ‘Those teams in holiday tournaments that went to a shootout and advanced should count it as a win, and the team that didn’t should count that as a loss,’ he said. ‘In our meeting in April we’ll address this issue more clearly.’

This is lunacy. Whether you agree with the decision or not (and clearly, I don’t), the NJSIAA cannot continue to make decisions mid-season and inform coaches and athletic directors of them at the last minute or, in this case, after the fact. Teams have been playing overtimes and shootouts in holiday tournaments for years, but this year, with almost no warning, the NJSIAA decided to crack down on overtimes and force teams to go straight to shootouts. From everything I heard, that was a last-minute decision not everybody was aware of. But how can you rule that a shootout result should stand when (a) you admit you need to address the issue more clearly after the season, (b) even the NHL doesn’t count a shootout as a loss and (c) teams have already played shootouts, expecting the game itself to count as a tie. For the record, shootouts will continue to be listed as ties in my book.

Three games in a row So the Ledger reported that Don Bosco Prep will forfeit one of its wins in the Maine High School Hockey Invitational because the Ironmen played three games in three days. They would have had to forfeit the third one instead, but they lost that game anyway. This is in keeping with the NJSIAA’s precedent on violators of this rule (Delbarton, 1989 being the most well known case) but seems an odd penalty. What if the team lost all three games? How would the NJSIAA determine which game it should forfeit?
I have not heard if the NJSIAA will enforce similar penalties on Dumont (Dec. 21-23), Hudson Catholic (Jan. 4-6) or J.P. Stevens (Jan. 12-14), all of which played three games in three days. Dumont did not actually play the third game due to a forfeit, and the other two teams lost all three games.
In the Don Bosco Prep situation, I happen to know that the original schedule called for DBP to play three games in four days, but the tournament changed the schedule at the last minute due to other cancellations. Don Bosco had little choice in the matter and self-reported the violation upon its return to New Jersey.

So while the Ledger’s article didn’t answer every question, in my opinion, you have to like any report that brings up that many different storylines and gets that much space.

St. Rose I do have to give a shout-out to St. Rose for beating East Side 14-5 yesterday. I’m not quite sure how Peter O’Neill’s troops engineered a 10-goal turnaround from the teams’ first meeting, a 5-4 East Side win, but it’s good to see the Purple Roses get off the schneid. And I can now start wearing my East Side hockey shirt again. Seriously. Other teams still looking for a win include Hudson Catholic, Dayton, Old Bridge, Edison, West Morris and Middletown South … I’m rooting for each one to get at least one ‘W.’

Missing scores Game scores I’m missing … Jan. 12 Dem-OT; Jan. 12 MH-Reg; Jan. 14 Liv-SJHam.

At-large bids I received a question about at-large bids for Public B teams in competitive conferences (e.g. Verona, West Essex). To the best of my knowledge, the at-large process will be exactly the same as in the past: teams must finish within four games of .500 at the Feb. 11 cutoff date to apply for one of three public and two private at-large bids. Only three total public at-large bids will be awarded, and teams from both classes are eligible.

Trivia In preparation for next year, I’ve been wondering how to refer to John F. Kennedy Memorial High School in Iselin. What do the Mustangs they prefer? JFK Iselin? Iselin Kennedy? Kennedy (Iselin)? Kennedy Memorial? I have no idea. … It seems Jackson Liberty and Jackson Memorial have the same colors. Bizarre. … The itinerary for Delbarton’s trip to Minnesota is just freaking awesome. In addition to the three games, the Green Wave will see old friend George Parros (pictured with the trademark snarl of a Delbarton and Princeton graduate, at right) play in an NHL game, check out the U.S. Pond Hockey Championships (always a great photo in Sports Illustrated) and tour the University of Minnesota. Way better than our trips to Middlebury I went on in 1999 and 2000. … If you haven’t done so, check out this page on the Devils’ site – I like it a lot. … Finally, VOTE FOR DALE!


  1. You haven’t seen lunacy yet. What about a coin toss win/loss? At Ice House Tournament, one team advanced and the other didn’t, so based on this logic, they can’t be ties. It’s pretty straight forward to me.
    I never could understand the logic behind not allowing OT. Someone mentioned safety concerns, and I said huh?

    Comment by skigreat — 16 January 2008 #

  2. I thought you might find this link helpful:


    Those are rankings for MN high school teams as of January 14th. They have Breck at #41, Holy Family at #79, and Hill Murray at #2.

    Comment by Jim — 19 January 2008 #

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