Referees have a tough job to do regardless of the their experience, and they have to make some tough decisions in uncomfortable situations. Nobody seems to love you in those awkward moments and everybody is watching how you control the game.
I saw a really impressive example of good officiating yesterday under just these circumstances. In a game that was being played 0-0 well into the second half, a goalie makes a save right on the line. It's whistled a goal and both teams are a little confused. They don't say much except a few soft, "it wasn't a goal" remarks to each other. The referee was ~30 yards away and made a judgement call. The goalie looked bewildered and rolled the ball to midfield. The defending coach asked if this was a goal and the players on both teams quietly said "no". To the referee's credit, he walked to the goalie and asked her if it was a goal. She said, "no". He turned to the coaches and then to the parents to explain that he couldn't fully see the line and believes the goalie and the players. No goal.
As the scoring coach, you can imagine there are some mixed feelings here. Do you petition for the goal or go with what looks to be the right decision. To the coaches' credit, they moved on with the game.
The players, coaches, and parents saw a referee stand on an island essentially and correct a call with more information. I applaud the referee and admire his courage. We all learned a valuable lesson yesterday in judgement and fair play.
"As a coach, board member and new SYSA VP, I've likely seen and heard a lot of what you may be wondering how to manage as a parent or player. Great kids with supportive parents make it all a "once in a lifetime" experience.