Mt. Ararat's Alyssa Moody (23) and Bangor's Izzy Ireland compete for the ball in the first half of their game at Bangor High School on Sept. 17, 2021. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

The Maine Principals’ Association, the sanctioning body for the state’s high school sports, provides the following explanation of Heal Points:

The Heal Point System is designed to select teams for tournament play on the basis of athletic strength as demonstrated through the regular season schedule. The athletic strength of a team is determined by a two-step process.

In the first step, the preliminary index of the school is ascertained. This is computed by assigning 40 points for each Class A victory, 35 points for each Class B victory, 30 points for each Class C victory and 25 points for each Class D victory. These points are added and the total divided by the number of scheduled games. In all cases a minimum divisor is established by the appropriate sports committee. A team with no victories is assigned a preliminary index of 1.0. (Example: If a school team had two victories over a Class B school, two victories over a Class C school and two victories over a Class D school, they would acquire a total point rating of 180. If the school team had played an 18 game schedule, the 180 points would be divided by 18, giving a preliminary index of 10.)

The tournament index for the example school team would be determined by adding the preliminary indices of the schools from which it had won a victory. This total would be divided by 18 (the number of games in the schedule). If the two B schools had preliminary indices of 8 and 5; the two C schools 6 and 5.4; the two D schools 4.4 and 4.2; the total of these credits would be 33. Thirty-three divided by 18 (the total number of games on the schedule) would give the school team a tournament index of 1.83. For the purposes of comparing one school with another, the tournament index is always multiplied by 10; in other words, the tournament index of the school would be 18.30.

In those sports where tie contests are allowed, each participating school team is awarded one-half of the points of the opposing school. For example, a tie with a Class A school team results in 20 points being awarded to the opposing school team; a tie with a Class C school team results in 15 points being awarded to the opposing school team. No team may have a preliminary index less than 1.0000, including a team with a season’s end record of no wins and one tie with a Class D team. Soccer example: 25 divided by 14 divided by 2 = .8928571. In the final Heal points, this figure will be manually increased to 1.0000.

The official Heal Points are maintained by the MPA. Heal Point standings will be released by posting them on the MPA website. During the season, the preliminary and tournament index of each team will be determined by using a divisor of the total games to be played that season.

“For purposes of computing the Heal Points, the preliminary index is carried out to 10 places and the tournament index is carried out to 12 places. For reporting purposes, these indices are rounded to three places and four places, respectively.

A tie in the final Heal Point standings will be resolved by each standing committee for its sport. The resolution may vary from committee to committee but will have some variation of using head-to-head competition, a coin toss or a lottery to determine seeding placement, and/or a play-off game if to determine tournament participation.

The Heal Point System is used in baseball, basketball, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse, softball, soccer, tennis and volleyball.