Soccer Tournament Rules

Note: Team registration takes place one hour before your first scheduled game, at the large Tournament Concession Tent located at the Field Complex.


  1. Applications are accepted from carded travel (C, B, A and Premiere) teams, and from registered Recreational Teams.
  2. For U9 and U10:  teams will play 7v7; maximum roster size is 12; there is no deliberate heading; games may not begin or continue if there are less than 5 players on a team; substitutions are unlimited and can occur at any stoppage; and the build-out line rules and their associated off-side rules apply.
  3. For U11 and U12:  teams will play 9v9; maximum roster size is 16; there is no deliberate heading for U11; heading is allowed for U12; games may not begin or continue if there are less than 6 players on a team; and substitutions are unlimited and can occur at any stoppage.
  4. For U13 and older:  teams will play 11v11; maximum roster size is 18; games may not begin or continue if there are less than 7 players on a team; and substitutions are unlimited and can occur at any stoppage.
  5. Maximum number of coaches is 2; maximum number of guest players is 3.  Guest players’ names should be written in at the bottom of the approved team roster.
  6. If your state association requires “permission to travel” to attend out-of-state tournaments, this form should be submitted to the tournament at least 2 weeks in advance.
  7. Each team will be responsible for its own medical and liability insurance. In case of accident or injury while traveling to or from the tournament, or during the tournament, neither Mountain Top Youth Soccer Association nor its board, employees or volunteers, nor the Whitewater Cup Tournament nor its directors, employees or volunteers will be held liable. Nor will they be held responsible for any expense incurred by any team due to cancellation of part or all of the tournament, or for any other causes.
  8. At registration (one hour before your first game) you must provide an official team roster along with a medical release form for each player; and for travel teams, a USYSA picture pass for each player and coach. These documents must be present at the field for the duration of each game.
  9. Rosters are frozen at registration.  No player may play on more than one team in the tournament for the duration of the event.
  10. Girls may participate in a “boys bracket” but boys may not participate in a “girls bracket.”


  1. All teams play a minimum of 3 games, with two 25-minute halves and a 5-minute half-time. Rankings are determined based on the following: Win = 3 points. Tie = 1 point. Loss = 0 points. Forfeits = 2-0 score.
  2. Preliminary matches may end in a tie. Crossover games may end in a tie, except that a championship (1st place) play-off game that is tied after regulation time will play two golden goal overtime periods: 5 minutes each for U9 through U12; 10 minutes each for U13 through U19, with a 3 minute break between periods. If still tied, the game will be decided by penalty kicks.
  3.  If your team is competing in a round-robin bracket (or round-robin sub-bracket) and there is a 2-team tie at the conclusion of round-robin play, the winner will be determined according to head-to-head competition; then goal differential up to 3 goals per game; then goals allowed (no cap); and finally goals scored up to 3 goals per game. If still tied between two teams, the winner will be determined by playing a reduced/shrinking side, no-goalie, golden goal overtime. (A position player may be designated to use hands if a penalty kick occurs.) Period begins at 7v7 for all 11v11 brackets; 5v5 for all small-sided brackets. Each side is reduced by 2 players after 5 minutes, and by two more players every 5 minutes thereafter, except that there are never fewer than 2 players per team. Modified off-sides (one player between attacker and goal) applies.
  4. In case of a 3-team tie within a round-robin bracket or sub-bracket (after application of all the tie-breaker criteria listed for 2-team ties), a three-way penalty kick system will be used to eliminate a team or teams. Each team will take three penalty kicks against each of the other two (tied) teams, until at least one team is eliminated. During this 3-team penalty kick phase, no player may take a second penalty until all players on the team’s roster have kicked once. When/if two teams then remain tied, even after re-application of all the 2-team tie-breaker criteria listed above, an additional set of three penalty kicks will be taken to determine the winner. If still tied, the two teams will take one penalty kick each, until there is a winner. During this 2-team penalty kick phase, no player may take a second kick until all players on the team have kicked once in this phase, without regard to kicks taken in the 3-team phase.
  5.  For ages U9 through U13, each game will have one USSF member Referee in the middle, and each team must designate one person to run a line. For U14 and older games, there will be one USSF referee and two USSF linesmen.
  6.  Tournament committee reserves the right to combine age divisions where necessary.
  7.  A team cup will be presented to first and second place teams in each age group. Individual player medallions will be presented for first, second and third place in each age group.


  1. All games are played regardless of weather except that the Referee or Field Marshall may temporarily suspend a game in case of unsafe conditions, and can terminate or cancel games due to unacceptable weather, field or other conditions.
  2. After your team begins play, no refund is granted.  No refund is available if you withdraw from the Tournament after your acceptance confirmation.
  3. If weather, field conditions or other circumstances result in cancellation of the tournament before your team begins play, then a refund of $100 or a credit of $200 (your choice) will be issued. Credit may be applied to a future Whitewater Cup Tournament and is valid for two years. In case of potentially inclement weather, it is your responsibility to monitor the Tournament web site or call for updated information.
  4.  Regardless of weather conditions, your players and coaches must arrive at their designated field, on time, ready to play, unless notified in advance that the match has been canceled.  Failure to appear will result in a forfeiture.


  1. Each team must be prepared to enter the field promptly at the appointed time, or risk forfeiture. No grace period is available.  A team must take the field if the minimum number of players are present.
  2. To begin each game, visiting team kicks off; home team chooses a goal to defend.  (Home team is 2nd team listed on game schedule.)
  3. To maintain the tournament schedule, each game must begin on-time.  Therefore, the game clock will not stop for injuries, regardless of the amount of time lost.  Games, game breaks and overtime periods may be shortened or eliminated at the discretion of the Referee and/or Field Marshall.  Any weather-shortened game ended with 20 or more minutes played is considered an official game.
  4. Trading of club patches is optional.
  5.  Spectators and teams will be on opposite sides of the field.  Players and coaches must remain between the 18-yard line and their side of the half-line.  No spectators are allowed behind the goal.


  1. Coaches, referees or tournament officials must remove from play any athlete exhibiting the signs and symptoms of a concussion.
  2. Once an athlete is removed from a game, the decision may not be reversed.
  3. Once a player is removed from play because of symptoms consistent with concussion, that player may not return to play without written clearance, signed by a physician or licensed health care provider.  This written clearance must be submitted to and approved by the Tournament Director or Field Marshal, before the player may return to play.


  1. Players (except the goalkeeper) must wear numbers visible on the back of their jerseys.
  2. Players shall wear shin guards in accordance with FIFA rules.
  3. No metal cleats are allowed.
  4. No jewelry is allowed.
  5. Hard and/or soft casts are permitted only with the approval of the Referee.
  6. If opposing teams’ uniforms are the same color, the home team will change colors.
  7. The designated home team is responsible for providing a FIFA game ball acceptable to the Referee.  Ball sizes are:  Size 4 for U9 through U12; and Size 5 for U13 and older.


  1. Each coach must verify the posted game score at the Tournament tent, immediately following the match.  The Tournament will not be responsible for incorrect scores.
  2. Players, coaches and spectators are expected to conduct themselves responsibly.  Displays of temper or dissent are cause for ejection from the game, and from the surrounding field area.  Repeated violations may result in forfeiture of the game and/or suspension of the team from the tournament, without refund, at the discretion of the Field Marshall and/or Tournament Director.
  3. It is the responsibility of the coach, or the individual acting on the coach’s behalf, to control the conduct of players, team parents and spectators.  Failure to do so may result in a warning from the Referee.  Continued misconduct can result in ejection of the team’s coach.
  4. If a player receives two yellow cards (in one game) or a red card, the players is ejected from that game and must sit out the following game. No substitution is permitted for a player ejected from the field.
  5. Any player receiving two ejections is banned from the remainder of the Tournament.
  6. Any ejected coach must leave the field area immediately. The assistant coach must show his coach’s pass to the Referee in order to assume the coach’s duties. Otherwise, the ejected coach’s team will forfeit the match. Any coach ejected twice will be banned from the remainder of the Tournament.
  7. Issuance of yellow cards and red cards, and other matters pertaining to the conduct of a team, its players, coaches or supporters will be recorded and reported immediately to EPYSA and all matters involving referee assault or abuse will, in compliance with USSF Rule 3042, be referred immediately to the host state association. Your home state association and home club/league shall have, except in the case of referee assault, the responsibility for imposing, should circumstances warrant, additional sanctions within their respective jurisdictions with regard to any matters arising from the Tournament.
  8. No smoking or alcoholic beverages are allowed at any field site. No foul or abusive language is permitted.
  9. Only the coach who registered his/her team may speak with the Field Marshall, the Tournament Committee or the Tournament Director about matters pertaining to the Tournament.
  10. All ejections and grievances will be handled by the Tournament Committee at the conclusion of each game, at the Tournament Registration Tent.  Decision of the Referee and/or Field Marshall shall be final.  No subsequent protests will be considered.

The Tournament Committee and Tournament Director reserve the right to decide all matters pertaining to the Tournament and their judgment is final.