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Hockey Terms You Should Know

With Ireland’s Women’s Hockey Team’s upcoming games, our Saba Superfan Correspondent, Ruth is here to teach you some hockey terms

  • The use of the rounded part of a hockey stick is not permitted, this is called “backstick” and a foul is committed when this happens.
  • Penalty corner. This is awarded to the attacking team when the defense either commits a foul inside the striking circle or intentionally hits the ball out-of-bounds over the end line. A penalty corner is taken by an attacking player at a spot on the end-line approx. 10 meters away from the nearest goal post. All other attackers must stand outside the striking circle, while five defenders, including the goalkeeper, stand behind the end line until contact is made with the ball. Once the ball has been put in play, all players can rush into the circle to either defend or shoot the ball at the goal.
  • Penalty stroke. This is awarded to the attacking side when an offense is committed by the defending side which is deemed to have prevented an almost certain goal. A penalty is taken 6.4 meters from goal, with the player having only the goalkeeper to beat. A penalty can only be pushed, scooped or flicked and cannot be hit from the penalty spot.
  • Obstruction. This is awarded against a hockey player who uses their body or stick to prevent an opponent from reaching the ball.
  • Third-party obstruction. This is awarded when a hockey player positions themselves between the ball and an opponent, allowing a team-mate an unobstructed play on the ball.
  • The ball may be lifted into the air as a pass once it is done so safely, travels safely, and lands safely. This is known as an “aerial pass”.
  • Free hit. This is a free play awarded on any offenses that occur outside of the scoring circle. It usually takes place at the location of the violation. All opposing players must stand at least 5 meters from where the hit is to be taken.  

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