2014 USATH Club National Championships Begins This Friday

May 12, 2014, 9 a.m. (ET)

2014 Club National Championships Begins This Friday in Reno, Nevada

The 2014 U.S.A. National Championships will be held at the Reno – Sparks Convention Center. Competition will take place in Men’s Elite, Men’s Open and Women’s Open divisions. The Local Organizing Committee (LOC) will be USA Team Handball, in conjunction with Reno-Tahoe CVA and PSA Sports.

COMPETITION VENUE:  We will conduct competition in the Reno – Sparks Convention Center located at 4950 South Virginia St., Reno, NV 89502.  It will have 3 or 4 regulation courts and designated warm-up area, all of which will feature SnapSports Shock Tower flooring.

HOTEL: USA Team handball has adopted a "Stay-to-Save" policy for this event.  To ensure the quality of service provided USA Team Handball has appointed the complimentary services of PSA as the Official Housing Provider for this event.  It is required that teams book their housing accommodations through our housing service to ensure qualification in this event.  USA Team Handball will be enforcing this policy and cross-referencing team registration with hotel rooming lists.  Anyone violating the Stay-to-Save policy may be disqualified from competition.  

Grand Sierra Resort - Headquarter Hotel, 2500 East Second Street, Reno, NV 89595 (www.grandsierraresort.com) is an official hotel partner for this event.

CONCESSIONS: Reno – Sparks Convention Center and its vendors will be serving the food at the event all three days of the competition, right outside the gym with one-stop for all your hot and cold meals, beverages, snacks, and deserts.

AIR TRAVEL:  For those traveling by air, Reno-Tahoe International Airport (http://www.renoairport.com/) is located 3 miles from the competition venue and less than 2 miles from the HQ Hotel.  The Grand Sierra Resort will provide free shuttle service from/to airport to the HQ Hotel.

As United Airlines is the official airline of USA Team Handball, feel free to use the United Airlines Olympic Desk at 1-800-841-0460 or www.united.com.  For preferred rates use promotional code ZRUW 776086.

GROUND TRANSPORTATION: The RSCVA will provide complimentary shuttle transportation between the Grand Sierra Resort and the Reno – Sparks Convention Center for teams/clubs every 30 minutes from 7 am – 9 pm, staring on Friday, May 16, and end ending on Sunday, May 18.

ANTI-DOPING: This event will be subject to Doping Control Procedures as administered by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).  Therefore, all players may be subject to random testing procedures, similar to those experienced in past years. Please remember that Doping Control Testing (conducted by the USADA) may take place after the medal rounds/finals on Sunday.  Please book your flights and transportation accordingly.  Doping Control has become a focal point for all sports in the USA and we need to be compliant with the demands of this important matter.

TECHNICAL MEETING:  There will be a Technical Meeting at 9:00 p.m., Thursday, May 15 at the Grand Sierra meeting room, TBA.  It is mandatory that each team has a representative present at this meeting to coordinate final rules and details for this event, including uniforms’ colors for first matches.   Failure to send a representative will result in forfeiture of your Performance Bond.  Missing the roll call of all registered clubs at the beginning of the meeting will constitute a formal absence and forfeiture of your bond.  There will be no exceptions.  The room will be announced on the hotel’s message boards.  Detailed agenda will be send out via email to your club’s registered representative.

COMPETITION FORMAT: The 2014 U.S. Club National Championships will be contested according to procedures outlined in the USATH Rule Book (Revised in August 2013), Article IX, and Sections 1 through 12.

However, based on the number of teams qualified and registered for each division, USATH Competition Committee reserves the right to: (a) modify the competition format, (b) make the decision of ranking, seeding, drawing or any other way to place teams in Pools, (c) adapt Rules of the Game to fit the competition’s timetable until 7 days prior to the first day of the Club National Championships.

Group placement and seeding are not a science and every attempt will be made by the Competition Committee to assure that the process is as fair as possible.

TABLE OFFICIALS:  We hope to have enough volunteers from the local community partner to serve for table duty for any given match.  If volunteers are not available, the backup plan will be that each team provides one player or coach or staff member for the game following their game.  Should only one player be needed for table duty following a game, the individual who will serve in that capacity will come from the winning team.   This will be covered during Technical Meeting.  Failure to satisfy a table duty assignment will be a performance bond. 

:  Registration for this event is now closed.

WITHDRAWAL: SHOULD YOU NEED TO WITHDRAW FOR WHATEVER REASON, MAKE SURE THAT YOU NOTIFY Mariusz Wartalowicz by PHONE: (630) 392-9221 and send a follow-up email to: mariusz@usateamhandball.org.   However, once you register your participation fee becomes non-refundable.

FORMS:  All USATH athlete/coach/referee individual as well as team/club membership registration and dues must be completed and paid on-line through AllPlayers.com at http://www.teamusa.org/USA-Team-Handball/Membership.aspx. This takes care of signing all waiver documents.

If a participant is under 18 years of age, parents or legal guardians must sign off on all forms.  A coach or team official is NOT permitted to assume this authority for the under age athlete. This policy will be strictly enforced!

Onsite individual registration will not be available or accepted.

ROSTERS:  Final rosters are due at the Technical Meeting. NO CHANGES may be made to rosters after the Technical Meeting at 9:00 PM on Thursday, May 15, 2014.

Each team can bring a maximum of 16 players per team to compete in the championships.

A maximum of 16 players may play in each game and sit, dressed in team’s uniforms, on the bench plus up to four (4) officials who also must be listed in the match report.

For Men’s Elite Division, minimum roster to participate as a Team: 12 players

For Men’s and Women’s Open Division, minimum roster to participate as a Team: 10 players.

No player will be allowed to compete until clearance from USA Team Handball Technical Director during team check-in/registration.  His decision is final and not subject to any appeals.  Participation of any ineligible player(s) in any game will result in the entire team’s immediate disqualification from the Championships.

ELIGIBILITY: All teams participating in the 2014 Open National Championships must adhere strictly to all rules set forth in the USATH Competition Rulebook edition (revised in August 2013) posted on http://www.teamusa.org/USA-Team-Handball/Resources/Clubs/USATH-Competition-Rulebook.  Specifically, all individual players and clubs must be registered/paid members of USA Team Handball.  

A player can only play for one team throughout the Championships. 

Divisions will be gender specific – meaning no females can play in any of the male divisions and no males can play in the female division.

Foreign club teams are welcome and encouraged to enter but must meet local residence eligibility rules and additional requirements set forth in USATH Rule Book, Article IX, and Section 13. Please go to http://www.teamusa.org/USA-Team-Handball/Resources/Clubs/USATH-Competition-Rulebook and page 25 for full details.

USA TEAM HANDBALL NATIONAL TEAM TRYOUTS: The tournament will serve as an official tryout for players interested in inclusion in our National Team programming and considered for NT Residency Program.   Male candidates should fill out Player Information Card (link attachment) and email it to jgarciacuesta@yahoo.com while female players should email Christian@usateamhandball.org. Only those who have done so will be formally evaluated during the competition.     

UNIFORMS:  All teams must follow IHF rules regarding uniforms.  Failure to do so shall result in forfeiture of Performance Bond.  Make sure that you become familiar with all related official rules and pay special attention to the following:

Rule 4:7 – All the court players on a team must wear identical uniforms.   The combinations of colors and design for the two teams must be clearly distinguishable from each other. All players used in the goalkeeper position on a team must wear the same color, a color that distinguishes them from the court players of both teams and the goalkeeper(s) of the opposing team (17:3).

Note: Identical means identical including uniforms’ fabrics, color, shade, pattern, brand, etc.   We will fully enforce this detail.

Rule 4:8 – The players must wear numbers that are at least 20cm high in the back of the shirt and at least 10cm in the front. The numbers used are generally from 1-20 but new rules allow for numbers from 1-99. The color of the numbers must contrast clearly with the color and design of the shirt.

Note: No numbers can be drawn or taped to the uniforms.   Any and all violations of uniforms standards will be a Performance Bond issue and will result in forfeiture of your $300 bond.

TICKETS: General admission is free for all guests, friends and family. 

VOLUNTEERS: Individuals interested in participating as volunteers throughout the weekend are encouraged to register by sending email to info@usateamhandball.org. Volunteers will receive the official USATH T-shirt and an official written confirmation of hours worked and duties performed.

USA TEAM HANDBALL ANNUAL ASSEMBLY: Details shall be announced shortly.

FINAL NOTES: Please make plans to join us for a social hour following the completion of all matches on Saturday night.  Details shall be announced shortly.

The USA Team Handball is the rights holder for all marketing, sponsorship and broadcasting related to the 2014 USA National Championships.  Please be advised that this event will be broadcast and teams may be asked to make accommodations for television. Information on live streaming will be available soon.