NCAA/ ACHA rules 2020-2022

 Please stay up to date, as These are NOT USA HOCKEY rules. Please click here or the image below for further information (click on the “Officials” tab in the middle of the page).

NCAA Ice Hockey Rules 2020-2022 Seasons

2020-21 and 2021-22 Major Rules Changes for Men’s and Women’s Ice Hockey



Section 1: The ACHA will use the rules of play specified in the NCAA Ice Hockey Rules & Interpretations Rule Book unless specified below or otherwise in the Divisional Policies and Procedures: [2001]

A. Teams shall be permitted to have the option of dressing a maximum of 18 skaters and three goaltenders OR 19 skaters and two goaltenders.
B. All overtime play during the regular season shall be 4 on 4 unless specified otherwise herein. [2007, 2018]
C. Spitting at an opposing player, fan, or official is an automatic game disqualification. [2007]
D. The one referee, two linesmen system is an approved officiating system for all ACHA games. [2009]
E. Should the NCAA implement a rule to allow the wearing of half-shields, the ACHA shall defer the implementation of this rule for ACHA play until the issue can be considered by member schools and discuss and vote on the issue no sooner than the following annual meeting of the Association. [2012]

Section 2: The ACHA Policies and Procedures for student-athletes receiving disqualification (DQ) penalties shall be the same procedures and suspensions as required by the NCAA rules.

Section 3: All disqualification penalties shall be reported to the Divisional Commissioner with weekly score reports on each ACHA and non-ACHA game. This requirement shall include DQ information on players in exhibition games as well as in post-season tournament play. [2012]

***Incident Reports need to be filed for ALL GAME MISCONDUCT and DISQUALIFICATION penalties. The ACHA also tracks player history, and per NCAA rule 22.2:

22.2 Suspensions – A player who receives three (3) game misconduct penalties
in the same season (including exhibition games) shall not be permitted
to play in the team’s next regular-season or tournament game against an
NCAA member institution. For each additional game misconduct penalty
(e.g. four, five, etc.) assessed to the same player in the same season, the
player shall be suspended for one (1) additional game. This shall not be
part of a progressive penalty structure. Exhibition games cannot be used to
fulfill the suspension for this violation.

Use the ACHA Incident Report 2019-20, and follow the instructions. The report must be submitted to appropriate ACHA commissioner(s) within 48 hours of the incident.  Include ACHA Referee-in-Chief on all email reports.

Contacts for submitting an incident report (league commissioners and RIC):

  • Referee-in-Chief: Ed Giacomucci (

  • Division 1:

    • Men’s Division 1-Brian Moran (
      Women’s Division 1- Molly Mahoney (
  • Division 2:

    • Men’s Division 2 (email both)- Jon Eccles (
      Women’s Division 2- Taylor Hadley (
  • Division 3:

    • Men’s Division 3 (email all)- Ken Day (, Mo Stroemel (, and Dave Kurtz (

Remember, the Protection of the student-athlete is the top point of emphasis for both genders. Continued diligence on enforcing “Contact-to-the-Head” penalties will remain a focal point.  The ACHA reminds coaches and players that the responsibility remains with the player making the hit to avoid contact with the head and neck area of an opposing player.


Our ACHA officials are required to be completely registered with USA Hockey at level 3 or higher. In unique circumstances, USA Hockey level 2 officials may be used with approval from the ACHA Referee-in-Chief.

The ACHA crest is available for ordering. Please visit for crest details. You can also get to the crest-ordering document on the official’s tab of the ACHA website.

Please visit the ACHA website for additional referee information. There are many valuable training documents on the ACHA website under the “Officials” tab.

We hope this information will help your officials prepare for the upcoming season. Good luck this season and let me know if you have any questions. Thank you all for your dedication to our sport.

Ed Giacomucci
American Collegiate Hockey Association