Darrell Moody: Soccer officials need to be more diplomatic
October 14, 2017
Officiating is a thankless task. It's the only job/hobby where you're expected to be perfect at the start and get better from there.
To be a good official in any sport, you obviously have to know the rules, and you have to have decent people skills.
You can't have a God complex, and I've seen that more in high schoolsoccer than any other sport I've ever watched or covered. I've seen too many high school soccer officials in the past 12 years who are just unapproachable and have thin skin to boot. If you're going to officiate anything, you have to expect to take flack about calls. It's part of the game. Don't get me wrong, there are some really good soccer officials in Northern Nevada, but the bad ones far outweigh the good ones. The good ones need to be able to communicate with coaches about calls. Stop the clock if you have to.
Last Wednesday's soccer match between Galena and Carson is a good example of what I'm talking about. There was an on-the-ground collision between Carson's Efren Ramirez and the Galena keeper, who had come out to dive on the ball. The center referee first raised a yellow card and followed it up with a red, meaning Ramirez sat out Saturday's home game against Bishop Manogue. Ramirez had received a yellow card earlier in the match.
The decision brought a loud boo, as expected, from the CHS rooting section and coach Frank Martinez wandered down the sideline to express his displeasure. The official was more upset at the fan reaction, and told Martinez he was going to forfeit the game if the fans didn't stop.
Are you kidding me? He certainly has the power to remove people from the stands on a yellow card violation, but to threaten to forfeit a game is over the top. He has the power to ask for an administrator and have fans removed for unruly behavior, and that's what should have been done before he made any comments. I asked an official friend of mine if a game could be forfeited. He said that the officials have the power to "abandon" the game and let the NIAA decide the next course of action.
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Vice Principal Gavin Ward did indeed come down from the press box to quiet the student section which is where most of the noise was coming from.
What did the official expect in a tight game? It was a game-changing call, forcing Carson to play with just 10 players the last 16 or so minutes, and that was one reason why Galena was able to score a game-tying goal. Personally, I didn't think the play warranted a yellow, especially if it was going to end with an ejection.
Carson soccer games are tough to officiate. The Carson soccer kids can be mouthy at times, and I'm sure officials tire of it after a while. Only certain players are allowed to talk to the officials, and I've seen that rule violated several times this year by all the teams. I'm actually surprised I haven't seen some yellow cards dished out to Carson for arguing calls.
It appears Tez Allen's first year of college basketball will have to wait.
Allen, a three-year varsity player for former CHS head coach Carlos Mendeguia, apparently injured his foot during a workout. He is expected to return at some point.
University of Nevada basketball fans get their first peek at this year's team on Oct. 29. The Pack hosts Division II Stanislaus State at 3 p.m. at Lawlor Events Center.
Admission is $5, and it's open seating.
The regular season starts on Nov. 10 when the Pack hosts former WAC rival Idaho at 7 p.m.
And, in case you missed my post to Twitter over the weekend, Mendeguia has been named the school's new softball coach. He replaces Shane Quilling.