A feather in my cap, a challenge at hand…

I got another playoff assignment yesterday.  I’ll be heading 90 minutes up the road to do a loser-out playoff game for middle-sized school girls.  And I’ll be headed there alone, where I will meet up with two officials from an hour-and-a-half in the other direction.  Me, a small-city official, will meet up with two small-town officials.

I’ve done this twice before, both two years ago.  The first of these went fine, although, as I said at the time, “[i]t was tricky going from “Hi, I’m Paul” to working a playoff game in under an hour.”  The second was higher-stakes (a bi-district championship game) with more quality partners, and I was so amped up that I poached a little in the first quarter.  In the end, though, I won my partners over.

This game falls somewhere in between those two on the importance and challenge level.  I haven’t seen either of the teams, but the one with a superior win-loss record beat the one with a losing record (who made the playoffs via play-in game) by 18 last week.  It’s a loser-out-game, so throw the record books out, yatta yatta…but I’d rather be working people I know than people I do not know and whom it’s unlikely I’ll see again.

I am not the crew chief, so I’ll just have a couple of questions (maximum of two) that I’ll bring up:

–How do you want me to handle it if I have information from your area (out-of-bounds, 2- vs. 3-pointer, etc.)?
–How should we as a crew handle misses outside of our areas?

If I have answers to those questions, I then will be able to chill out and focus on my area.  In a way, I rather wish my two partners were from different towns, but my assignor says they’re both from the same rural association, so I worry about being odd man out.  But…hey.  Control what you can control and all that.  I can control calling my area, so I will.

I don’t want to read my assignor’s mind, but I can’t imagine he has too many mixed-crew situations like this come up, and this is the third he has given to me in three years.  I can’t help but view that as a positive: I’m the guy he trusts to represent out association to outsiders.  I’ll take that.

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About Paul Hamann
I am a basketball referee in Washington State, working mostly high school games.

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