Wednesday, May 9, 2012

4.3.3.2 A skater who is out of play must re-enter the Engagement Zone in the opposite way she left.

Today’s rule is really pretty simple. It even has two subrules that make it even more simple to understand. I almost feel like posting the two subrules would be a waste of time, but I may just post them anyway, as they are rules after all. The idea here is that if you skate ahead of the pack and leave the engagement zone from the front, you must reenter the engagement zone from the front. If you drop back and leave the engagement zone from the rear, you must reenter the engagement zone from the rear. While this rule is easy to understand, in its application, its existence is important in a way that some people may not consider. If a skater didn’t have to reenter the engagement zone from the way they left, they would be able to just skate around the track anytime they wanted to, completely lapping the pack. This sets up the possibility for a Blocker being passed by a Jammer at the front of the pack, then following the Jammer all the way around to the back of the pack and stopping there. The Jammer would then pass through the pack, but only pass the other three Blockers on that team, as the Blocker that followed the Jammer was behind her the whole time and not passed on that scoring pass. That would be a way for a Blocker to prevent a point for the opposing team by doing pretty much nothing. There are many rules in place to prevent just such an incident from happening, such as the Not On The Track points rules. This is one such rule, that prevents Blockers from preventing being scored on without having to physically stop the Jammer from passing them. If a Blocker reenters the pack from the opposite direction than she left, she will be given a penalty. 6.10.14 A Blocker re-entering the pack from behind, having lapped the pack. A penalty must be applied to each offending Blocker (see Section 4.3.3). 6.10.15 A Blocker re-entering the pack from the front, having fallen behind the pack. A penalty must be applied to each offending Blocker (see Section 4.3.3 and Section 8.3 and Section 8.4). Although there are penalties for such an action, skaters who have left the engagement zone must immediately attempt to reenter or else be given a minor Out Of Play penalty, followed by a major for sustained failure to reenter the engagement zone. If a skater has fallen behind the pack and is attempting to skate forward, but is just slow enough that she gets lapped by the pack, she would receive only the minor Out Of Play penalty outlined in 6.10.15. If a skater skates ahead of the engagement zone, to attempt to reenter she must slow down, and possibly eventually stop. If she continues to skate forward then that would be a sustained failure to reenter, and she should be given a major Out Of Play penalty before she has a chance to reenter the engagement zone from the rear. However, for whatever reason, if she is not given an Out Of Play major, and she makes it all the around the track and reenters the engagement zone from the rear, having left it from the front, then she would be given a minor OOP penalty as outlined in 6.10.14.

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