Stupid teenagers and lousy referees?
This weekend both of the Princely Midgets were to play in soccer tournaments. However, with a “river of rain” hitting the area, the tournament has been up in the air. Where the games were scheduled to be played, the fields are controlled by the local parks and rec district and they don’t decide to open or close the fields due to weather until the morning of. With three games to play today and two more tomorrow, we’ve been up in the air all week.
With a patch of relatively dry weather expected last night, two games were rescheduled to last night. The boys played at the same time at fields in the same sports complex. I stuck around for my youngest as it developed into a very exciting game.
The game started at 6:00, in a downpour. For the next 90 minutes the downpours came every 15 minutes or so. My son’s team played well, but fell behind at halftime 2-0. It should have been 1-0 as one of the goals was scored by a player who should have been called for offsides. But that’s the way things go.
I don’t think any of us parents were expecting much in the second half. It just didn’t look like the team had it last night.
Second half rolls around and it looked like two different teams took the field. My son’s team scored a goal early on, added another about five minutes later, and another after another five minutes, and finally a fourth goal with about five minutes to go, while denying the other team any legitimate scoring opportunity. The good guys won 4-2 in their first game of the tournament. We were absolutely drenched, but it turned out to be well worth it.
What made it particularly sweet was this:
1. The referee was absolutely horrible. I started refereeing this year so I now understand the difficulty in calling a game. People standing on the sideline see plays from a different angle than the referee at the center of the field. Plus players can screen a referee from the best view of a play. But, damn, this guy was bad. A player from the other team throws his body at one of our players, they both fall down, our team got called for a foul. A player on the other team slips on the wet turf, our team gets the foul. Call after call was like this. Our team in coming back for the win really had to overcome not just the other team, but a horrible referee.
2. And, well, really the icing on the cake. The African-American kid on our team was called a nigger and one of the white kids on our team was called a cracker by players from the other team. Our players didn’t stoop to their level. Instead they put the ball in the goal over and over again in the second half.
I’d really like to know, however, why this keeps happening. Over and over again over the years as my kids have played sports, this kind of name-calling crap takes place on the field. Why? No, really, why?