Summer Travels with Referees

Russ Thompson
Water Polo Planet

We’re going to take a break from the interviews this month to spotlight the travels of some of the referees interviewed on Water Polo Planet.  Many times referees want to know what they can do to advance, or to improve assignments and gain valuable experience with which to become a better referee.   It is no secret that hard work pays off so this month I want to share with you some of the travels of our referees.

Beyond the experience gained by simply practicing their craft, these referees have proven that sacrifice and dedication pays off.  

Mark Koganov traveled to Budapest for the European Championships where he refereed.  Before these championships Mark was in Barcelona for the Champions League Final Six, then the Women’s World League Super Final in China.   Mark wrote said “That is all for summer”, which made me smile.  Summer was less than 3 weeks old when Mark wrote me and he had already been to Hungary, Spain and China!   Is it any wonder that when Mark sees 14 college students in the pool is isn’t such a difficult venue to referee for Mark?

Michael Goldenberg whistled the Fisher Cup in May in San Diego CA.  In June Michael refereed at the Men’s World League Intercontinental Tournament in Shanghai,  China.  Then, in July, off to Orange County to whistle the US Club Championships and the Summer League games also in Orange County.  In August Michael will travel to National Championships in Trinidad and Tobago.  In August it will be the Power Bar Cup in Atlanta GA and then the Men’s NCAA Season begins.

Val Vasilchikov refereed at the USCC National Championships where he whistled all advance games for the tournament and also the semi-final game.  He whistled the 18 and under final women’s Championship in Orange County California.  In addition, he will whistle the US Open Mens’ Championship at the end of July, beginning of August.  Val will also travel to Trinidad and Tobago to whistle with Michael.

Alex Stankievitch just came back from SoCal where he whistled with Michael and Val at the US National Club Championships and US Men's Open.  For both, Alex whistled the final game Michael.

In June Alex was a part of the Junior Olympic qualifier for North East Zone as a delegate and USWP Referee School Instructor.  He whistled the Championship for Masters Mid-Atlantic League in Greensboro, NC, the Sunshine State Games in Coral Springs, FL and in 9 days he is leaving for Istanbul, Turkey where he was selected by USWP to officiate the Fina Men's World Youth Championship.

Bruce Morehouse refereed the California State Games, July 11-13 and he enjoyed time with his father in Santa Barbara.   Bruce travels extensively and he is enjoying a well-deserved break.

Madisen Drury refereed the Sunshine State Games in Coral Springs, FL (06/26/2014-06/29/2014), then the USA Women's Open Tournament in California and then played in Utah's Master League.

Tiffany M. Ruiz-Urbanski  has been a busy lady.  It is no wonder she is gaining National recognition and her career is flourishing.

June 6th-8th – Irvine, CA- USA Water Polo Masters National Championship
June 20th-22nd- Commerce, CA- Commerce Men’s International Tournament
July 9th-13th – Irvine, CA- United States Club Championships
July 25th –August 3rd – San Jose, CA- USA Water Polo Junior Olympics
August 4th-10th – Honolulu, HI- Hawaiian Invitational Water Polo Tournament
August 11th-15th – Cleveland, OH- 9th Annual Gay Games
All summer in-between (aka,,,in all of her spare time) in the Chicago Land Area:
Northwest Territory Summer League (referee and evaluator)
Naperville Suburban Summer Water Polo League (referee and evaluator)

In a couple of short months this summer 7 referees have whistled all over the world!


Congratulations to these referees!  Use this map as a reference point when you want to measure hard work and dedication.   These referees have sacrificed and it should be no secret to anyone why they have advanced to their respective levels.