By Tim Nash
I just spent five days watching experienced referees coach and mentor young officials at the US Youth Soccer Region III Championships.
I watched, listened and asked questions as some of the best and most experienced referees in the country spent time helping the next generation of officials improve in all aspects of officiating.
And guess what? None of the instruction included telling the referees to choose a team to screw. Not once were the young refs told to try to anger the crowd, or irritate the home fans.
But it happens, doesn’t it? We live in an era when every call is debated and scrutinized through multiple instant replays and fans get countless chances to see a controversial play that the ref gets to see once for a split second. Continue reading
By Tim Nash
On Aug 19, for the 10th time in 18 games this season, the North Carolina Courage looked at the scoreboard at the end of the game and see a zero under their opponent’s name.
Ten shutouts have helped the Courage, who have allowed a league-low 14 goals through 18 games, secure a place atop the NWSL standings for most of the 2017 season.
The stingy defense can be credited to a number of different factors – a high-pressing defense starting athletic forwards, like Ashley Hatch, Jessica McDonald and Lynn Williams, an organized and aggressive midfield led by Sam Mewis and McCall Zerboni, and backline that features a veteran from New Zealand, Abby Erceg, and three players who have caught the eye of U.S. National team coach Jill Ellis – Jaelene Hinkle, Taylor Smith and Abby Dahlkemper. In goal, both Katelyn Rowland and Sabrina D’Angelo have shared the duties. Continue reading