East Coast Super League

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Not to be confused with the former Australian league of the same name which ran from 1994 to 1999.
East Coast Super League
East Coast Super League Logo.png
Sport Ice hockey
Founded 2002
Inaugural season 2002
No. of teams 5
Country Australia
Most recent
champion(s)
Reach Rebels
Most titles Newcastle North Stars (3)
Reach Rebels (3)
Sydney Sting (3)
Related
competitions
Australian Ice Hockey League
Official website ECSLhockey.com

The East Coast Super League (ECSL), is a senior ice hockey league in New South Wales, Australia. The league was formed in 2002 by New South Wales Ice Hockey's amalgamation of the former Junior and Senior A leagues. It is Australia's second highest level of ice hockey, and acts as a bridge between junior leagues and the AIHL. Four of the clubs are based in Sydney and one is based in Newcastle.

History[edit]

The East Coast Super League (ECSL) was formed in 2002 by New South Wales Ice Hockey following the amalgamation of the former Junior and Senior A leagues.[1] The league started with four clubs, with the Raptors winning the inaugural title.[2] The 2003 ECSL finals were won by the Sydney Heat and in 2004 the Raptors won their second title.[2] In 2005 the ECSL expanded to six clubs and also marked the first expansion outside of Sydney, with the Australian Ice Hockey League's (AIHL) Newcastle North Stars entering a farm team into the competition.[1] The North Stars went on to win in their debut season and won again in 2007, with the Ice Breakers winning the 2006 ECSL final in between the North Stars two years of titles.[2] After expanding in 2006 the league dropped back down to four teams with two teams leaving the league including the previous ECSL champions the Raptors.[3] The Ice Breakers won their second title in 2008 and in 2009 the Sting won the first ECSL final.[2] The 2009 season also saw the Penrith Raptors enter the league, taking on the name of the previous Raptors club.[4] In 2010 the Central Coast Rhinos entered the league after leaving the AIHL before the start of the 2009 season.[5] They finished the regular season in first place however were knocked out of the playoffs in the semifinal round, with the Penrith Raptors going on to win the 2010 playoffs.[2][5] The Rhinos and Ice Breakers both left the league at the end of the season and were replaced by the Vipers and Reach Rebels respectively for the 2011 season.[1][5][6] The Rebels won the finals in their debut season and in 2012 the North Stars won their third title.[2] In 2013 the Sting won the playoffs, their first since 2009.[2] The Vipers folded at the end of the 2013 season and were replaced by the Blueline Bombers for the start of the 2014 season.[7] The 2014 regular season was won by the Reach Rebels who also went on to win the playoffs, defeating the Sting two games to one.[8][9] The Rebels claimed back to back regular season titles, finishing the 2015 season in first place with 31 points.[10] The Rebels advanced to the grand final series after defeating the Penrith Raptors in the semifinals and faced off against the Sting who had beat the Newcastle North Stars in their semifinal.[11] The Sting went on to defeat the Rebels in two games, claiming their third Championship title.[12]

In February 2016 it was announced that the Sydney Heat had folded following an instruction from Ice Hockey NSW to the ECSL to reduce the league to five teams for the 2016 season.[13][14] Some of the Heat's former players were signed by the other clubs in the league including the Blueline Bombers who picked up eight players.[13] The Heat also announced their intention to return to the league in the future.[13] The Sting changed their name to the Sydney Sting for the start of the 2016 season and introduced a new logo and jersey.[15] The 2016 regular season was won by the Rebels who claimed their third title overall.[16] The Rebels advanced to the grand final series after defeating the Blueline Bombers in the semifinals.[17] They faced off against the Sydney Sting who had defeated the North Stars to advance.[17] The Rebels were awarded the cup following the forfeit of the Sting for playing an ineligible player in Game 2 of the series.[18][19]

Rules & season structure[edit]

The ECSL is played under International Ice Hockey Federation rules and incorporates some modifications from Ice Hockey Australia as well as some of its own special rules.[20] Games are played with three twenty minute running time periods with only the last five minutes using a stop clock.[14] Team rosters must have at least 40% of their players aged 25-and-under. Players aged 23 or older are limited to playing five Australian Ice Hockey League (AIHL) games.[14] Once they have exceeded this limit they are not permitted to return to the ECSL until the following season.[14] There is no cap on the number of AIHL games a player under the age of 23 can play.[14] The minimum age for players to compete in the ECSL is 17. Midget-aged players playing in both the ECSL and in Midget competition must prioritise Midget competition if there is a schedule clash.[14] Full-time rostered players must have competed in a minimum of seven ECSL regular season games to be eligible for the playoffs.[14] Players competing in either the AIHL or a Midget competition must have played a minimum of five games in the ECSL and seven games in their other league to be eligible for the playoffs.[14]

The league runs a 20-game season followed by a playoff series.[20] The semifinals are a two-game series which uses a cumulative aggregate format to determine the winner. The grand final series uses a best of three game format.[20] If after Game 2 in the semifinals or after Game 3 in the grand finals the series is a draw the games will go into continuous overtime.[20]

Teams[edit]

Team City Joined Notes
Blueline Bombers Sydney, New South Wales 2014
Newcastle North Stars Newcastle, New South Wales 2005
Penrith Raptors Penrith, New South Wales 2009
Reach Rebels Sydney, New South Wales 2011
Sydney Sting Sydney, New South Wales 2002 Formally known as the Sting from 2002–2015

Former teams[edit]

Season results[edit]

The ECSL championship has been won 15 times by seven different clubs.[2]

  • 2002 – Raptors
  • 2003 – Sydney Heat
  • 2004 – Raptors
  • 2005 – Newcastle North Stars
  • 2006 – Ice Breakers
  • 2007 – Newcastle North Stars
  • 2008 – Ice Breakers
  • 2009 – Sting
  • 2010 – Penrith Raptors
  • 2011 – Reach Rebels
  • 2012 – Newcastle North Stars
  • 2013 – Sting
  • 2014 – Reach Rebels
  • 2015 – Sting
  • 2016 – Reach Rebels

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "About the ECSL". East Coast Super League. Archived from the original on 2014-09-15. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "History". East Coast Super League. Archived from the original on 2014-09-15. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  3. ^ "ECSL". New South Wales Ice Hockey. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  4. ^ "About". Penrith Raptors. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  5. ^ a b c "Bears v Rhinos - Game 2 Announced". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2014-02-10. Archived from the original on 2014-09-15. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  6. ^ "ECSL Ice Breakers". Elite Prospects. Archived from the original on 2015-10-07. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  7. ^ "2014 ECSL Season to Start". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2014-03-15. Archived from the original on 2014-09-15. Retrieved 2014-09-15. 
  8. ^ "2014 Regular Season Standings". East Coast Super League. Archived from the original on 2014-09-16. Retrieved 2014-09-16. 
  9. ^ "Rebels win the 2014 ECSL Finals". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2014-09-28. Archived from the original on 2014-09-28. Retrieved 2014-09-28. 
  10. ^ "2015 ECSL season: Round 24". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2015-09-19. Archived from the original on 2015-10-04. Retrieved 2015-10-04. 
  11. ^ "2015 ECSL Playoffs: Semifinals". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2015-09-26. Archived from the original on 2015-10-04. Retrieved 2015-10-04. 
  12. ^ "2015 ECSL Playoffs: Grand Final Series". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2015-10-03. Archived from the original on 2015-10-04. Retrieved 2015-10-04. 
  13. ^ a b c "ECSL news: 24 February 2016". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2016-02-24. Archived from the original on 2016-10-01. Retrieved 2016-05-23. 
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h "Season 2016 Members Handbook and Rulebook" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2016-10-01. Retrieved 2016-05-23. 
  15. ^ "2016 ECSL season: Round 1". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2016-03-13. Archived from the original on 2016-10-01. Retrieved 2016-10-01. 
  16. ^ "2016 ECSL season: Round 26". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2016-09-11. Archived from the original on 2016-09-11. Retrieved 2016-10-01. 
  17. ^ a b "2016 ECSL Playoffs: Semifinals". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2016-09-18. Archived from the original on 2016-10-01. Retrieved 2016-10-01. 
  18. ^ "2016 ECSL Playoffs: Grand Final Series". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2016-09-25. Archived from the original on 2016-10-01. Retrieved 2016-10-01. 
  19. ^ "Reach Rebels win the 2016 ECSL playoffs". Ice Hockey News Australia. 2016-10-01. Archived from the original on 2016-10-01. Retrieved 2016-10-01. 
  20. ^ a b c d "By-Laws & Policies". East Coast Super League. Archived from the original on 2014-09-28. Retrieved 2014-09-28. 

External links[edit]