Young Male and Female Referees of the Year for 2009

Two of our up and coming young referees were honored at the 2009 New York State West AGM on November 14, 2009 in Rochester. They are Mike Ertel of the Buffalo District and Samantha Randall of the Ithaca District. If you happen to see them, congratulate them on a well deserved honor.

Michael is currently in college at NCCC majoring in Physical Education. He is a grade 7 USSF referee. He works as a referee for the Upstate Premier League, and the Region I Director's league as well as several NYSWYSA Youth State Cup tournaments, the 2008 and 2009 ODP regional tournaments and the 2009 Region I Championship tournament. Michael was named Buffalo and WNY Male Youth referee of the year in 2007, Northtowns male referee of year in 2006, and Buffalo Rookie referee of year in 2003. He has been recognized by both Kiwanis and Rotary with the Student Recognition Award for Excellence in Physical Education. He is also a member of the first NYSWYSA Coach Development Initiative class of 2010. He is already giving back as Mentor in the BWNYJSL and is active as a community volunteer.

Samantha has played soccer for years most recently with Homer High School, where she is a Senior. She has also played for Empire United SA and CNY United. She began officiating at age 12 as a Recreational Youth Referee and upgraded to become a full referee when she turned 14, three years ago. She works in the Upstate Premier League, Broome County Spring League, Tompkins County Fall League and the Cortland County Youth Soccer Association Recreational League. She participated in the 2009 NYSW State Youth Cup and was invited to the 2009 Regional Championships in Huntington, West Virginia where she was honored with a semi-final center assignment and a finals assignment as an Assistant referee. In her semi-final center, which went to kicks from the mark, she was honored by the instructional team for dealing calmly and intelligently with a very unusual situation when both keepers were injured on the same kick. She is a very talented, natural referee who understands and reads the game very well and is a very smart, quick study. She has been an assistant coach on several travel and recreational teams. Outside of soccer she is a volunteer at her local hospital, at the Broome Developmental center as an intern, and is a member of many clubs at her high school, most notably Youth In Government. She also participates in Track and worked to help organize the first Cortland County Folk Festival.