Chris Trinkaus-Randall is Young Male Referee of the Year for 2006

By Joyce Furia

Chris Trinkaus-Randall of Stow has been named Young Male Referee of the Year for 2006 by the Massachusetts State Referee Committee. A senior at Nashoba Regional High School, Chris plans to attend Boston University in the fall.

Chris Trinkaus-RandallnChris got the word in a phone call from SYRA John Utter. "I had just come home from school when the phone rang. I was hoping I'd been runner-up last year. I was thrilled and immediately called my dad and mom to give them the news. I guess I started refereeing like most kids. The money was good. Also, my father was a referee for 11 years and my sister refereed for a while, so it's in the family. I started when I was 11, doing U-10s."

He clearly remembers his very first game. "One of my parents came with me and watched from the back. I was very nervous, excited, antsy, it was nice to have that first game over with." He says that even now, the very first game each season is a bit like the first, a little nerve wracking, something that he's always glad to get under his belt.

He's also been a player for years: Premier, district, usually defense, sometimes midfield. When he goes off to college he plans to continue playing, not at school but as part of a club team. But it is going out on the field with that whistle in hand that's most enjoyable.

"It's always a challenge, you're always thinking on your feet, and no game is exactly like the other. And it's fun, especially the last couple of years. I really enjoy the three referee system." He also enjoys the camaraderie that he shares with other officials, whether as part of a three-man crew, or at tournaments such as MTOC and State Cups.

Fellow official Derek Ambrozaitis has played a special part in his refereeing career. "He's been great. He gives me advice, at tournaments we'd talk about what to do and what not to do both on and off the field."

Recently, he worked with fellow referee Anthony Ferragamo, who was named Massachusetts Young Referee of the Year in 2004 and who went on to win the national title. Ferragamo is also a student at Boston University.