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> Even if a player was screened unintentionally is it a play that is
> to be re- played?
If a screen does occur, the penalty is a loss of rally (side out). A
replay is not issued.
> Does the ref have to make that call or if a player calls it is that
> enough? Last season the ref said the player had to verbally call it
> and this season a new ref says it is the refs call and it wasn't
> intentional so it didn't matter that the player was screened.
Your questions can't be answered without knowing if you are playing
indoors or outdoors. As it turns out, this makes a huge difference
w.r.t. the screening rules. In my usual style (and thanks to more
insomnia), however, a Swiss-Army-Knife of an answer is provided below.
Your new referee appears to be misinformed, at least under USA
Volleyball rules. Intent is irrelevant to screening both indoors and
Outdoor rules are very strict w.r.t. screening, and give the receiving
team all the power they need to get a clear view of the server and
Under USAV outdoor rules: "The server's teammates must not prevent the
opponents, through screening, from seeing the server or the path of
the ball. On an opponent's request, a player must move sideways or
bend over or down."
The key here is "On an opponent's request." If you as a receiver
don't ask the serving team to move, you've forfeited your right to a
If you get courtside to pro-beach twos, you'll often hear the
receiving players asking the serving team's blocker to move one way or
the other. If the server is in a polite mood, they may even be
pro-active and tell their own partner to move to remove any screening
Since the players have so much control here, the referee should never
have to get involved, and a screen should never occur. However, if
the referee judges that screening did occur, the referee should blow
his whistle to end the rally, and award a sideout.
Indoor rules are very specific w.r.t. screening, yet the rules are
also list a number of requirements to be met before a screen can be
called. In practice, you will see very few screens called.
Preventive officiating works best here.
Here are a few things to keep in mind w.r.t. indoor screening.
First, when it comes to screening, intent is irrelevant.
Second, for a screen to occur, the ball has to be served over the
player(s) in question. That is, even if a receiver cannot see the
server, you can't expect the referee to do anything until the ball is
Third, it's not even sufficient for a player to screen the body of the
server. The receiver needs only to be able to see the __contact__ of
the service, which is often well above the server's head/body. For a
screen to occur, the __service contact__ has to be obscured.
As a result, screening is seldom called. Most often, potential
screens are dealt with by the receiving team's captain. The captain
should approach the referee and notify the referee of the potential
for a screen. An experienced referee will use preventive officiating,
and call the serving team captain over to alert him/her of the
Indoor Individual Screen---
With all that being said, an individual player on the serving team
won't be called for a screen unless they're being quite a poophead.
Poophead-like tendencies are more precisely defined as waving arms,
jumps or moving side to side as a receiver changes their position.
Even then, screening would only be called if the serve travels over
Indoor Collective Screen----
A collective screen is what you're most likely to see indoors,
especially in light of the expanded service zone along the entire
endline. Any two players on the court who are standing upright can
potentially cause a collective screen. There is no requriement that
these two players be physically close to each other. The middle back
and middle front can easily combine to obscure the server, and
comprise a collective screen if the ball is served from a low toss,
Other things referees consider include the speed and trajectory of the
serve. If the serve is a high, lofting underhand, you're unlikely to
get a screening call, regardless of player position.
I'm sure this is more answer than you were looking for, but it should
answer your question. :-)
Todd H. firstname.lastname@example.org
USAV Regional Referee, Great Lakes Region, Palatine, IL
Todd's Volleyball Referee Page http://www.io.com/~tdh/vball/
"So you're a Ref and an engineer? Oh that explains it...."
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