I officiated 31 games in 10 days while working the youth and men’s club festival games in Denver, Colorado. I officiated every age level from U11 to 55+, and worked nearly all of the games with partners I had never worked with before. The sheer amount of games gave me a great opportunity to work on two adjustments to my officiating:
- A more relaxed flag throwing motion for less flag height
- A single, strong whistle to stop play
I have backups for my backups. Extra whistles, extra flags, extra scorecards, extra pencils. You name it I’ve got it stocked in a verifiable Honig’s shop in the back of my hatchback. My very first scrimmage ever back in 2008 I pulled into the school parking lot and met the assigned referee. I thought I had everything I needed, but after looking into his car I realized I only had the bare minimum of supplies needed. Seeing the shocked expression on my face my partner told me he accumulated all of his extra gear after many seasons, and if I stuck with officiating I would have a similar collection. That wound up being a very true prediction.
I’ve advanced as a lacrosse official for two reasons. One, I’m fortunate to have a job where I set my own hours (thank you freelancing!) so each year I do a good number of games. Two, I work in lots of different techniques that I pick up from more experienced officials. Some of those techniques work for me while others don’t. I keep the ones that benefit me, and I hold the ones that don’t fly in my back pocket.