LAW 5: Referees/Refereeing Systems/Ejections/Game Report

All referees and referee assignors shall be USSF certified and registered with the Mass State Referee Committee (MSRC). Referees are assigned by the local certified referee assignor for League games, except for playoff games. The referee is responsible for control of the game. The referee's decisions are final and their judgments are not protestable.

A.     Two different officiating systems operate for BAYS games:

For all 11 v 11 games and 9 v 9 games: The local certified referee assignor will assign one referee and two assistant referees; for all spring season playoff and tournament games, the Playoff Committee will assign three-official crews.

In all other regular-season games in both spring and fall: The local certified referee assignor will assign one referee and has the option to assign up to 2 (locally paid) Assistant Referees (ARs) or each team may be requested to provide a volunteer club line assistant who meets the requirements of Law 6.

B.     The BAYS online referee reporting system shall be used for all games. The referee shall report the score; any cautions, ejections, or serious injuries; and any other pertinent information. If asked, the referee should also fill out a USSF referee report when any serious or unusual incident occurs, including when any player is seriously injured. 

C.     In any game where players or non-players are ejected, the referee needs to detail the circumstances and individual actions fully, including the names, in the game report, which will be routed to the Ejection Director.

D.    No Show or Incapacitation of a match official.

Three person crew: If an official is delayed or becomes unable to continue, standard IFAB rules apply with no coach interaction required.

Single person crew: In the event the referee does not arrive within 15 minutes after the scheduled kickoff, both coaches should make every effort to agree on an acting referee so that the match is played and counted as an official game. If a scheduled referee does not arrive by 15 minutes past the stated game start time, he/she is not entitled to any fee, unless the acting referee, already selected and agreed upon by both coaches, relinquishes his/her whistle. The home coach must notify the referee assignor if a referee is either a no-show or tardy, so that corrective action can be taken.

  1. If the referee or acting referee of a match with only one game official is forced to withdraw from the match, both teams’ coaches should make every effort to agree on an acting referee, who meets the requirements of this section, so that the match is played and counted as an official game.
  2. An acting referee may be a USSF certified referee registered with Mass Ref or an adult with a valid Mass Youth coach’s credential.
  3. Spectators who do not have a valid Mass Youth credential may not serve as an acting referee.
  4. In the event that both coaches cannot agree on an acting referee, the game shall be postponed as if the field were unplayable. The BAYS Division Director will be notified by the coaches that the game could not be played due to a no-show referee and no suitable replacement being available.
  5. The home coach is responsible for notifying the home referee assignor that an acting referee was used so that the referee assignor may remove any previously assigned referee from the game. 


Note: Some clubs have ongoing referee training programs and at times, BAYS games may be officiated by a larger than required referee crew, all of whom must be currently certified, e.g. Grade 3/4 games with assistant referees, or Mentors or Other Officials who are paid by the club.