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  • Writer's pictureTerri Tomoff

Where are my Cards?

While I work on Joy Ride Journeys (working title), I am also adding stories to The Lady in the Soccer Suit.

Here is a sneak peek of a mistake I made on the pitch:

As we know, anything can happen at any time when it comes to sports. The whole, “the thrill of victory, and the agony of defeat,” comes to mind. And then all that happens in the middle of all those victories and defeats is what can hold our interest for the entire game, match, set, finish line, etc. Competition can be hard-fought and downright nervy.

And then there are the officials who make mistakes during a game.

While on a high school soccer pitch, a game I was refereeing was reasonably tame. The kids were playing hard, but nothing unusual. A typical run-of-the-mill match, or so I thought. It was the kind of game where I could have left my cards (yellow/red) in my bag. Sometimes my hubby teases me about doing just that - don’t even take the cards out on the field or place them in your pockets (typically the yellow on the right side of the jersey and red in the right back pocket).

While running down the field during this game, that thought quickly went through my mind, not realizing I did not have my cards in my pockets as he “suggested.”

Of course, the game couldn’t finish out ho-hum. Nope, a kid decided to go after a player on the opposing team and shoved him hard to the ground - a reckless tackle that warranted a yellow card (caution). As I whistled hard to stop play, I immediately ran over to the player, opened my right chest pocket to retrieve the yellow card, and realized there was no card. Ugh! I had to think fast about what to do.

So, I did what any self-respecting referee would do, I pretended. I pantomimed by removing the invisible card. I held it high above my head and booked him anyway. I then motioned toward the bench with the “card” still high above my head as the player had to leave the field when the card was issued —even an invisible one! I also yelled to the players and coaches, “This is a yellow card.”

It was a laughable moment, and there was a good chuckle from many, including the coaches and the surrounding players who went along with the invisible card scenario.



It was a great fall day to referee with another female (I tend to ref with mostly males) - Rylee!


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