By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
April 10, 2013-How often is it that the number of referees on a field exceeds that of the combined number of players for both teams? On March 24, that exact situation was created––and it lasted for five hours!
That Sunday, through the good efforts of East Hudson Youth Soccer League (EHYSL) Board Member and Highland United Soccer Club coach Mark Clemmer, eight Girls-Under-13 teams were brought together for a series of rotating half-hour scrimmages on the turf field at Marlboro High School. Officiating those games, also rotating and performing in unison, were over 30 newly trained and registered US Soccer referees, grades 8 and 9.
Supervising and instructing those new officials were EHYSL Assignor Enrico Romano, and US Soccer State Referee Instructors Dave Longacre and Rich Ceonzo.
"Enrico, assisted by LaGrange Soccer Club assignor Rob Sweeting, spent most of the day running the center referee position with a steady stream of new officials, working with them on their positioning, signals, whistle discipline and angles of visibility, while Dave and I had the remaining officials, lined up in the correct assistant referee positions, working on their positioning, signaling and communication skills," said Ceonzo. "We even had a coach feign behaving inappropriately, to demonstrate to all 30 officials the correct, low-key way to address any such problems."
Most of these new referees will start officiating young intramural games in their home clubs, and the opportunity to be mentored and coached in their first on-field officiating duties should serve them well as they begin what hopefully will be lengthy careers in the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA).
With 123,843 youth soccer players––68,587 boys and 55,256 girls––and more than 25,000 volunteers, the non-profit Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) stretches from Montauk Point, Long Island to the Canadian border. Members are affiliated with 12 leagues throughout the association, which covers the entire state of New York east of Route 81. Eastern New York exists to promote and enhance the game of soccer for children and teenagers between the ages of 5 and 19 years old, and to encourage the healthy development of youth players, coaches, referees and administrators. All levels of soccer are offered––from intramural, travel team and premier players as well as Special Children. No child who wants to play soccer is turned away. Eastern New York is a proud member of the United States Soccer Federation and United States Youth Soccer Association. For more information, please log on to http://www.enysoccer.com/, which receives nearly 300,000 hits annually from the growing soccer community.