Student Referees Learn Leadership
December 13, 2020
Sophie Grace Posick (‘22) has been a soccer referee since 8th grade. Posick thanks her older brother Dalton for opening the gate to refereeing. “If it was not for my brother, I would likely not be a referee,” she explained. It was his patience and determination that led her to become a referee today.
Her older brother, Dalton, became a referee, and her father was a soccer coach, which all of her siblings to play the sport. She then decided to switch courses and become a referee. Thanks to her years of being a referee she is “more confident in myself and in my decisions.”
Being a referee, people have to make fast decisions but also be prepared for whatever response that is given. Posick has learned to take authority over her decisions and she believes “it’s a great opportunity to learn leadership skills.”
Soccer player Katie Sollee (‘22) has started a new facet of soccer: becoming the referee. After 6 years of being a goalie on the soccer field she has now switched positions into a referee, yet still plays soccer for Bolles’ JV team.
Becoming a referee has had beneficial effects on Katie’s life. She can make decisions faster and “it teaches me to appreciate the money that I’ve earned,” Sollee said.
Posick is not new to soccer, in fact, she played the game before she decided to referee, which came from her family blood. “Soccer gave me the background to become a referee” Posick said.
To become a referee, people have to go through a series of modules then end it off with a test.
Posick referees for Florida Elite, and she has a trainer who helps her with game calls and makes sure she knows the plays. During some games, her trainer watches and gives her tips on how to improve.
With positive factors, comes negatives, and Sollee has found that she needs a backbone for what she does. The biggest virtue she’s gained is “mainly patience having to deal with people and having a backbone to stick up for yourself,” she said.
Posick explained that you just have to get past the criticism and “learn that you didn’t really do anything that impacted the outcome of the game so you’re okay.” Since she has been doing this for so long, it has gotten easier over the years to ignore the criticism.
When coaches and parents get upset at her for a decision she made, Sollee explained, “I can ask them to politely stop and if they continue I can go up to the center ref and ask them to talk to them.” Once the center referee asks them to leave her alone, they can even go as far as kicking a coach off the field if they won’t stop.
Although the criticism doesn’t affect Posick as much anymore, she sometimes isn’t always confident in the decisions she makes. “I always worry that I made the wrong one,” she elaborated. Or she feels she gave one team an unfair advantage in the game.
At the end of the day, Sollee loves her job and enjoys the benefits. It even helps her during soccer games while playing goalie, “I can predict what’s going to go on further,” Sollee added.
Posick has gained many virtues due to having so much power over the choices she must make.
Along with acquiring self-confidence and patience, Sophie Grace has also realized, “you’re the person making the decisions and you have to stick to that.”