2013 NYSWYSA Young Referees of the Year

Antonio Triana has been a referee since 2008. He resides in Cortland and is a member of the Ithaca District.
Antonio’s family had him playing with a soccer ball before he could walk, and he started playing on a recreational team at the age of 5. He began playing competitive soccer at the age of 7, and has been playing ever since. In addition to playing and officiating, Antonio has coached a team of 8 and 9 year olds, experiencing soccer from all points of view. Antonio meditates each day, and considers himself a life-long learner. He has shared his interest with friends who were not involved in soccer, some of them into a love of the sport – including three friends who followed his lead and became referees.

Antonio began studying karate five years ago, and is currently a third degree brown belt. He assists with a community based karate program, leading a group of students. He is a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Cortland and provides child care services for children ages 2 to 5. Antonio believes that art is an important part of the community. He has played classical piano for ten years, and serves as substitute pianist for his church.

He attends the New Roots Charter School in Ithaca, and is a member of the Green Team, seeking solutions and providing information. He has been active in programs to increase composting and recycling, and worked with a friend to develop an online petition supporting their campaign against nuclear weaponry.

Coaches and teachers alike refer to Antonio as a “leader.” He has carried that trait into his referee life. In addition to recruiting his friends, he has been designated as a mentor referee by his district.

Brianne Lilly is a member of the Rochester district and lives in the Town of Chili. She graduated from Churchville-Chili High School in 2012 and is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice and Criminology at Niagara University.

Brianne’s love for soccer started at a young age. She played youth soccer for clubs in both Chili and Churchville, and also guest played for the Gates Metros on many occasions. While attending Churchville schools, Brianne’s didn’t limit herself to soccer. She also participated in tennis, basketball and both indoor and outdoor track and field, serving as a captain on three varsity teams.

In 2010, she added another dimension to her soccer career by becoming a referee. She has embraced this challenge and has worked to improve her skills by actively seeking out mentors within the unit. She has shadowed professional referees at Rhino’s matches, and has had the opportunity to sit through post-game debriefs at the professional level.

She has served as a volunteer coach in the Little Lady Saints Soccer program, working with girls age 5 to 10. As her high school senior project, Brianne wanted to do something to promote soccer. Working with an organization called Peace Passers, she collected used soccer equipment from her school and community. She collected over twenty pairs of soccer shoes, fifty jerseys, and other soccer equipment that was eventually sent to young players in the Republic of Suriname in South America. She has also participated in the Clean Sweep program and has worked at the St. Monica’s soup kitchen. She continues her volunteer activities at Niagara University, working with various agencies to assist those less fortunate.

We believe she will be a contributor to the soccer community for many years to come.