Caribous GM frustrated with Hockey NL’s response to Herder

Hapgood takes issue with goal judge decision and the officials’ consultation

Published on April 7, 2017

Clarenville Ford Caribous GM Ivan Hapgood.

©TC Media file photo

This hasn’t been a good week for Clarenville hockey fans, or the Caribous organization.

“It’s a gap that will never be filled now,” Caribous general manager Ivan Hapgood told TC Media Thursday about the result of the Herder Memorial championship on Sunday. “I’m ready to move on, but the only way to move on is if people told the truth.”
After a disputed goal was allowed in the waning minutes of the Herder finals, capping a win for the HGOE CeeBee Stars over the ‘Bous, video evidence later appeared to confirm that the puck passed under the side of the net and never actually crossed the goal line.
The Caribous appealed the decision late that night, but Hockey NL says referee decisions are not subject to official protests, and the final result stands.
However, now several days after the incident, Hapgood says he still has two concerns in the aftermath of the controversy.


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The first is the matter of the goal judges.
Hockey NL president Jack Lee said Wednesday both leagues — the AESHL and the CWSHL — and their team representatives agreed to not use goal judges at a pre-series meeting because neither had used them this season.
Hapgood says the reason that decision was made was because the teams were told by Hockey NL they could avail of goal judges, but the on-ice officials would not be consulting with them.
“Then the decision was made. If they’re not going to consult with them, what’s the sense in having them there?” asked Hapgood.
He says this has been the same instruction from Hockey NL over the past few years.
The other point of contention had to do with the initial decision by a single referee at the time of the final goal on Sunday.
According to Hapgood, who says he was watching from the end of the Caribous’ bench, the referee didn’t consult with any of the other three officials on the ice before ruling it a good goal.
“If the referee didn’t consult with the other associate referee, or the two linesmen, I’ll be damned if he’s going to consult with a goal judge,” he said.
He says there will always be mistakes with calls in hockey, but that’s no excuse not to rely on fellow officials to make the right call.
“We’re all human … if he saw the puck in the back of the net, his first instinct would be to call it a goal, wouldn’t it? Now, (what should happen is) to get together with the other three officials to find out if they saw something as to how it got in the net, legal or illegal. It’s not the part of the call, it’s the part of the procedure that wasn’t followed after.”
Hapgood says he believes one of the linesmen, who was positioned on the penalty box-side of the rink at the blue line, was on the proper side of the ice to see the play develop.
Hapgood says he saw the linesman try to speak with the referee who made the call, but was brushed off by the ref.
While Hapgood says there is no way to know whether the linesman would’ve argued for a no goal call, it still shows there was no consultation with the on-ice officials after the goal.
TC Media contacted Hockey NL, but they declined to comment.
Twitter: @jejparsons

Video courtesy of Ryan Harding and NTV.