The Midfielder
Heartland Soccer Association Newsletter
 October 2019

Heartland Soccer Association 
Celebrates 40 Years of Soccer!
9161 W 133rd Street, Overland Park, KS 66213
Phone: 913-888-8768

Heartland Soccer Association is recognized as one
of the largest soccer leagues and tournament hosts in the country.
We offer recreational to premier divisions,  ages U8 through U19.

Check out our newest video segment, The Breakaway, featuring Shane Hackett and Katie Falco! 
Thank you to all of the teams participating this season! We are so excited and grateful to have you be a part of Heartland Soccer Association!

Upcoming Tournament Spotlight:

2019 ALDI HIT - Girls
SCHEELS Overland Park Soccer Complex
Garmin Olathe Soccer Complex
Wyandotte Sporting Fields

Nov. 1st - 3rd, 2019
*Registration Closed*

2019 ALDI HIT - Boys
SCHEELS Overland Park Soccer Complex
Garmin Olathe Soccer Complex
Wyandotte Sporting Fields
November 8th - 10th, 2019
*Registration Closed*

The ALDI Heartland Invitational continues its reputation as the biggest and best tournament in the Kansas City area. Split over two weekends (Girls weekend and Boys weekend) to accommodate the number of teams wanting a chance to compete one last time. Last year (2018), over 800 teams from throughout the central United States traveled to compete in this end-of-the-year showdown. Our access to additional fields allows us to accommodate the many teams looking for a competitive season finale.


2018/19 Heartland Numbers

Fall league teams '19
Spring league teams '19
League players 
Tournament teams
Tournament players 

Team pictures from the 2019 Midwest All Girls Tournament 
fueled by Tohi


This Month in History: October
On October 15th, 2000 in front of 39,159 fans at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. the Kansas City Wizards hoisted the MLS Cup trophy. The KC Wizards defeated  Chicago Fire by a score of 1-0 to clinch the cup. Wizard's goalie Tony Meola earned MVP honors after one of the more impressive goalkeeping performances in MLS Cup history. Meola, who turned away 10 Chicago shots, added MLS Cup MVP to his regular season MVP, Comeback Player of the Year, and Best Goalkeeper awards for the 2000 season.
Earlier in the season the Wizards won their first ever honor when they won the MLS Supporters Shield given to the team that finishes atop the standing after the regular season. The team unfortunately could not sweep the trophies that season as they were eliminated by the Chicago Sockers in the second round of the U.S. Open Cup. This season was a huge success for this team and set them up for future franchise success as well. They have since become what we know now as Sporting KC.

Hutcherson, J, et al. "The 2000 Kansas City Wizards and the 2013 MLS Season." US Soccer Players, 13 Feb. 2013,

Concussion ImPACT Testing

Order New Apparel Today!
HSA apparel
Dave & Buster's, Overland Park is now open! Be our guest and get $20 in FREE Game Play! Eat. Drink. Play. Watch Sports

Fall 2019
Oct 04-06 Midwest All Girls Tournament Fueled by Tohi / League Play
Oct 11-13 League Play
Oct 18-20 League Play
Oct 25-27 Rainout Weekend
Nov 01-
ALDI Heartland Invitational Tournament - Girls
Nov 08-10 ALDI Heartland Invitational Tournament - Boys
Nov 15-17 Academy Sports Shop Event Weekend for Heartland
Nov 17
Heartland Soccer Fashion Show at The Overland Park Ballroom
2019 Referee Meeting Dates
Referees of all ages and experience levels  are encouraged to attend Heartland's monthly referee meetings!  Join us to learn tips and tricks for ARs and Referees, fun games, vital information, and fabulous prizes!  Parents are always welcome.  

2019 Referee Meeting Dates
Thur Nov 7

Mentors meet 6 - 6:45 pm and Referees meet 7 - 8:30 pm   
Meetings will be held at the "Steve D. Scheels" Training Center in the northwest corner of the second floor of the SCHEELS store located at:

Congrats to our SCHEELS gift card winners!

Calloway Duntz, Abby Hill, Anthony Finch, Jason Worley, Nick Eisman, Truman White, Nathan Haskins, Scott Wiman, Daron Bennett, Sean Kneisler

Congrats to our Minsky's gift card winners!

Luke Haskins, Gavin Nelson, Irina Mikos, Lucas Cuejilo, Chris Savoy (not pictured: Alan Rosenak)

Thank you to everyone who participated and a big thank you to all our sponsors for the gift cards.
We appreciate your continued support of 
Heartland Soccer and our Referee Mentor Program!

Announcing the September winner of our Academy Sports 
'Social Media Giveaway'  
Congratulations Lance Cornell 
Your photo was selected 
as the winner of the $50 Academy Gift Card.

First time checking out The Midfielder?
Executive Director Shane Hackett explains why this is a 
great tool for players, coaches and parents. 
Sign the petition and show the world that Kansas City deserves to be a host city for the WORLD CUP!!!

Sign the Petition

Kansas City - In The Heart of It All

#KC2026 #United2026
The Referee Blog
Learning the Laws of the Game is the beginning of the journey.  Applying these Laws in a match situation is the destination.

A young person has decided that they want to get a job.  They ask themselves what job am I qualified to do? For many of our Heartland soccer players their decision is to stay with the game they love and to become a soccer Referee.  Step 1 is getting certified by US Soccer.

We have talked about the path to becoming a certified Referee in previous articles.  US Soccer has updated the certification training with the new "Grassroots Referee Program".  The first big change is the minimum age (which is now 13). The second is a new online training course that covers the Laws of the Game and other factors for being a successful Referee.  For those candidates who are 18 years or older, US Soccer also requires the successful completion of a background check and completing the SafeSport training program. Kansas, like other states, also requires Referee candidates to attend an in-person class to explore the Laws of the Game in more detail and to get some initial field training on the duties of the Referee and the Assistant Referees.  When a candidate has completed all of this, they are given their Referee badge and can accept assignments at Heartland.

Is this enough training to make an effective Referee?  We would all agree that this is just the beginning of the journey.  Knowing the Laws of the Game (not an easy thing to do) is not the same as applying them in the dynamic atmosphere of a competitive match with players, coaches and fans.  That is why the Kansas State Youth Soccer Association and the Heartland Board of Directors has been funding a Peer Mentoring Program.
Every weekend the mentors work with our Referees to help them improve.  For someone doing their first match, their goal is simple. Survive the first half and do the best job they can for the players.  You see the growth in these Referees when they come to the sidelines after the first half. What did I do well? What can I do better?  What can we, as a Referee team do to improve? And, each additional match creates more confidence. Sounds a lot like the growth when an adult starts a new job.  Can you remember the first day on the job? It gets easier as you learn more, doesn't it!

Last weekend Heartland had its inaugural Midwest All Boys Tournament at the Garmin Olathe Soccer complex.  120 teams from Kansas and surrounding states competed in the tournament. If each team played 3 games that would be 360 games (not including semis and finals)  That means 1,080 Referee and Assistant Referee assignments to cover the matches. If each Referee did 3 games a day and worked for all 3 days, the tournament needed at least 120 Referees.  And, there were league matches at SCHEELS Overland Park and Wyandotte Sporting Fields. It is a fact that soccer in Kansas needs venues, team and new Referees.

Shane Hackett, the Executive Director at Heartland, talks about Heartland's continued commitment to Referees available for our members in this video!

His message is that players who know the game and the nuances of the game (what is a foul and what is legal contact) will be more effective more quickly.  We will continue to help them with our mentoring program (again there is a difference between knowing what the Law says and being able to apply it in a game situation).  
I was talking with a young lady who started her Referee career 4 weeks ago.  I was impressed with her level of effort and her attention to proper technique and positioning.  She told me she had been playing soccer since she was 5 years old and loved the game. She also said she had experienced some "not so effective" Referees and was determined that she would be the kind of Referee that players and coaches and fans wanted to have assigned to their match.  We are looking for these people to join the Referee family supporting Heartland.

Thank you for supporting our Referees as they continue to become the Referees that are making the Heartland Soccer Association difference.  See you at the fields as we join you in watching the players and the Referees move our game forward.
Get Your Kickin' Chicken at a Kansas or Missouri Restaurant Near You! 8 Local Locations

2019 Kansas Youth Soccer Awards of the Year & Kansas Soccer Hall of Fame Nominations Extended to November 1st

Still looking for submission for the following awards:  
  • Administrator
  • Volunteer
  • TOPSoccer Buddy
  • TOPSoccer Coach
  • Volunteer of the Year
  • Boys Competitive Coach
  • Save of the Year
  • Goal of the Year
Kansas Soccer Hall of Fame Nominations in four categories.
Founder, Lifetime Achievement, Outstanding Achievement & Merit Award

Winners will be featured at the 2020 KSYSA Awards Gala and AGM which will be February 8, 2020 in Overland Park, KS at the Museum at Prairiefire from 7pm-10pm!

To nominate someone for a 2019 Kansas Youth Soccer Award or the Kansas Soccer Hall of Fame then please  CLICK HERE !

Nominations for both due November 1 st , 2019 !
Go behind the scenes at Children's Mercy Park! Learn about the history of Sporting KC and take a look at the Pitch, Press Box, Broadcast Booth, Locker Room & more! For more information contact Kylie Perkins at
[email protected]  or 913-912-7578.
Come out and watch the best youth girl's teams in Kansas compete in 2020 Kansas State Cup and Presidents Cup Tournaments.

Oct ober 24-30 th , 2019
Wyandotte Sporting Fields
Kansas State Cup & Kansas Presidents Cup Draw Results Released!

Kansas State Cup & Kansas Presidents Cup Draw Results:  

Welcome to the Brand New US Youth Soccer

US Youth Soccer launches new rebrand that represents the future 

of youth soccer in the United States.  Read more: Click Here
Mark Alford is the Preferred Realtor of Heartland Soccer 

Mark Alford has been coming into your home as morning news anchor for 21 years. The trusted face and voice of Kansas City is a strong supporter of youth soccer and has donated his time and talents to Heartland Soccer Association over the years.

"Mark Alford has been an enthusiastic supporter of our youth soccer  community and we are excited to have Mark Alford, the team leader of  Vortexkc/Chartwell as the "Preferred Realtor of Heartland Soccer."  explained Shane Hackett, Executive Director.  "Mark continues to emcee  many of soccer events throughout the year and has a passion for kids and  families.  That's a great trait for helping families find their next  home."

Mark is a multimillion dollar producer, marketing and selling homes from  $2.5 million dollars, down to $67,000. 

"It's NOT the price, it's the EXPERIENCE that makes the difference" says  Alford. "It's about changing lives and helping people make memories." 

And it's because of Mark Alford's dedication, experience, passion and  CONNECTION with youth soccer and the Kansas City Metro that Heartland  Soccer Association is proud to name Vortexkc as our "Preferred Realtor." 

"I'm deeply honored to take on this role", says Alford. "Heartland Soccer  is about promoting family, building memories and developing talents, many  of the SAME things VORTEXKC is about. I'm so excited to get to know the  families involved on a much deeper level."

Register Now for 2019-2020 Kansas ODP!

Kansas ODP is looking for the very best youth players looking to enhance their technical and tactical ability as a player.  Players born from 2003-2008 are eligible to participate in these player evaluation trainings that take place throughout the year.  Kansas ODP is separate from your club team and you train with players from across Kansas.  

NEED MORE DETAILED INFORMATION? CLICK HERE or contact the Kansas ODP Administrator. 
Amy Cramer
Kansas ODP Administrator
10529 South Warwick St. | Olathe, KS 66061
[email protected] Direct Line:  913-991-3690

2018-19 Tournament Numbers
(number of teams)
Border Battle '19
KC Champions Cup '19
Mother's Day Classic '19 449
Kansas City Invitational '19 282
Fall Kick Off Challenge '19
Heartland Midwest Classic '19
Midwest All Boys '19
Midwest All Girls '19
ALDI Heartland Invitational Girls  '19
ALDI Heartland Invitational Boys '18

*In the last 12 months Heartland welcomed teams
 from a total of 17 states and Canada.

In-person Grassroots Course Coming In November!
Get course details and learn how to register:  CLICK HERE

Questions contact Matt ordon at 

"Why be a critic when YOU can be THE REFEREE!"

Register Now to become a referee! New Entry Level Referee Courses Available Now! Just click the link below to find one near you!

Get certified to be a referee!
As our local soccer community grows, the need for new and experienced referees continues.  Join America's Largest Soccer League.  More details on referee meeting schedules, training and education can be found on the 

Sign Up to Become a Referee for the Fall 2019 Season.
SCHEELS Overland Park Soccer Complex Paint the Fields PINK
This long-time classic brought together thousands of girls with more than 300 teams from throughout the Midwest, to compete and show their support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. 

The award-winning SCHEELS Overland Park Soccer Complex PINKED OUT as thousands of girl soccer players representing 300 teams and a RECORD 4,800 players from Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska and other surrounding states took to the fields for the Heartland Midwest All-Girls Tournament fueled by Tohi and hosted by Heartland Soccer Association last weekend.  The GO PINK presence is designed to raise awareness for October's National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and remind
women to get their mammogram because early detection saves lives. The tournament featured teams from seven states, drawing thousands of children, parents, grandparents and families from across the region in one of the Kansas City  metropolitan area's largest all-girl annual soccer tournaments.  

Field marshals and SCHEELS Overland Park Soccer Complex staff wore PINK attire and players used  PINK soccer balls during the tournament and fans and supporters wore  PINK to show their support. In addition, Menorah Medical Center and Overland Park Regional Medical Center had a display booth that taught women how to perform a proper breast self-exam and educated tournament goers about their nationally accredited breast 
programs, including mammogram and the benefits of their latest technology, 3D mammograms. 

"We value our partnership with Heartland Soccer 
Association and SCHEELS Overland Park Soccer Complex as we work together to help keep kids safe
on and off the fields," says Dr. Anne Kobbermann, M.D. Board-certified and Fellowship-trained Breast Surgical Oncologist at Sarah Cannon Cancer Institute at Overland Park Regional and Sarah Cannon Cancer Institute at Menorah Medical Center. 

"We love this community event as it also gives us the opportunity to raise awareness of the importance of early detection-and that it helps saves lives when it comes to diagnosing and treating breast cancer. The proceeds of  "Go Pink" items sold will be donated to "Verda's Place" making it extra special." 


* 3PM SHOW *



Mairin Adams, KC Legends Pre-Academy 07 (World Cup)
Elina Adams, KC Legends - 09 Olympic
Molly Anderson, KC Blaze
Jack Baron, Sporting BV Stuttgart 10
Lincoln Berry, Brother of players
Sariah Berry, KCSG Academy 05 Girls
Savannah Berry, KCSG Jr. Academy 12 Girls
Sydney Berry, KCSG Jr. Pre-Academy Navy 09 Girls
Ivy Curless, Rush Rec
Melissa Curless, OSA, Rush Rec Coach, Referee 
Evelyn Curless, Rush
Maxine Elbert, Player
Simon Esh, Christ Prep Academy HS & TOCA
Priya Estrada, Sporting Blue Valley
Maya Estrada, Sporting Blue. Alley
Zack Estrada, Sporting Blue Valley
Haley Garbowski, KC legends
Reese Gaultney, Kansas Rush 2010
Jackson Goodale, OPSC Hammers Academy 07
Whitney Hoskins, Brookside Soccer Club Coach
Janie Hoskins, Brookside Soccer Club
Charlie Hoskins, Brookside soccer club
Emme Johnson, Sister of Player
Ian Johnson, KC Bayern Munich 
Zach Lindstrom, Sporting Blue Valley West Ham
Olivia Linzy, Sporting Mo Valley Eclipse
Lexi Lons, Fire FC Blaze and Referee
Carlos Martinez, KC Bayern Munich
Olivia McCoil McCoil, Sporting MO Valley Eclipse
Paige Noth, Panthers
Alexis Olivares, SMV Lady Boltz
Leila Salanoa, Alliance Futebol Club
La'isa Salanoa, Alliance Futebol Club
Stella Salzer, KC Fusion
Audrey Salzer, KC Fusion
Thomas Savasten, Mustangs
Ethan Short, Mustangs and United FC
Shannon Short, Parent of Player
Levi Short, Parent of Player
Colby Short, Gardner Galaxy
Durham Snyder, Sporting Blue Valley
Dietrich Snyder, Sporting Blue Valley
Parker Thibault, St. Ann Tigers
Gracen Thibault, Legends
Hadley Thibault, Legends
Reece Todd, Arson FC 2010 Premier Girls
Matthew Valdivia, Legends Barcelona
Anthony Walker, Fountain City FC Coach
Audrey Witkowski, Skinner Shooting Star
Keira Witkowski, Mission United 08
Solae Young, Toca
Julian Young, KCAC
Jackson Young, KCAC
Johnathan Young II, Toca
Luciana Zarate, Brookside Soccer Club
Daniela Zarate, Brookside Soccer Club
Kaleb Wagner, Fusion and BVN Varsity
Kimberle Wagner, Parent of Player
Greg Wagner, Parent of Player


Now through December 1, 2019, Minsky's customers can "Add a buck for Kelce's Kids" to any purchase - with all proceeds going to Travis Kelce's Eighty-Seven & Running Foundation. With every "buck" donated, Minsky's will add a "matching buck" donation.

In addition to raising funds for Eighty-Seven & Running benefitting Operation Breakthrough, each customer donation is an entry to win a VIP Chiefs Game-day Experience at arrowhead!

Introducing the first three (out of five) winners: Celia Lustig, Laurie Ward and Dale Rife!

Want to be our next winner? With two drawings remaining, you can still win big! Each donation supporting 87 & Running and Operation Breakthrough (accepted for in-store dining, carry out, delivery and online orders) equals one entry to win big, including:
  • A pre-game tailgate pizza from Minsky's Pizza
  • 2 VIP seats at Arrowhead Stadium
  • A post-game field visit
  • An opportunity to meet Travis Kelce in an Arrowhead suite following the game!
Don't forget to try Travis Kelce's Gourmet Pizza Creation, The Kelceroni and save by presenting your VIP coupon when you dine in or carry out:
  • Save $1.50 on a Large Gourmet Kelceroni + Minsky's donates $1.50
  • Save $1.00 on a Medium Gourmet Kelceroni + Minsky's donates $1.00
  • Save $0.75 on a Small Gourmet Kelceroni + Minsky's donates $0.75
Not yet a Minsky's VIP?  Click here to sign up!  We'll email your coupon back right away - and even more great deals in the future!

Prefer to order your Kelceroni online?  At online checkout, enter one of the following codes:
  • Large Gourmet Kelceroni:  Kelce3
  • Medium Gourmet Kelceroni:  Kelce2
  • Small Gourmet Kelceroni:  Kelce150
The mission of Operation Breakthrough is to provide a safe, loving and educational environment for children in poverty and to empower their families through advocacy, emergency aid and education.

Valid for dine-in, carry out, delivery and online orders through December 1, 2019.

First Annual Midwest All Boys Tournament in the Books!

Fall 2019 marked the inaugural Midwest All Boys Tournament. This new tournament is the companion to our long-time Midwest All Girls tournament which brings together thousands of girls with more than 300 teams from throughout the Midwest. It was a great first event and we can't wait to watch it continue to grow each year. Thank you to everyone who was took part in this new journey with us!

1) Happy October! First and foremost, what are you being for Halloween? I'm playing the role of a grandpa with my two grandsons and handing out candy. My wife Neala loves to give out fists full of candy. Kids eyes light up as a small fortune of candy is put in their bags.    
2) What is your favorite costume you ever wore for Halloween?
 Hmmm. Probably, as an adult, Neala (my wife) and I dressed as Elvis and Priscilla. That was fun.  
3) How was the first ever Midwest All Boys Tournament? Outside of weather issues (lightning), it was a great first tournament. The Midwest All Girls routinely draws 330+ teams and we hope to grow this for the boys as well.  
4) The Rock the Runway is coming up! Why should someone attend?  The whole idea around a fashion show is to bring our soccer community together outside the lines of the soccer pitch. It's fun to see our coaches and players rocking the runway.  
5) There is one final tournament this season, The HIT which takes place over two weekends, what are your expectations for this tourney? This is the big end of the season tournament. Last year, we had a staggering 800+ teams come to KC over the two weekends. That's simply incredible. We are excited to host all the families in our town and our complexes for this event.  
6) Last but certainly not least, you just had another grandbaby! Congratulations! What is the best part of being a grandpa? Our oldest grandson, Hudson,  just turned four and my son, Christian, and I are coaching his soccer team together. We have scored as many own goals as we have on their goal. It's so much fun. The newest addition is Jude. He looks like a box-to-box midfielder with a great work ethic. As he was just born, I've got a least a couple of years before he steps on the pitch.   

The Coaches Corner:
Dribbling Part Four: Beat the Defender
Set up grid 10x20 area
Purpose: Encourage players to be creative and beat defenders
Organization: As in dribbling part one, two and three

Diagonal runs to beat defenders:
  • Player 1 dribbles at defender in the middle of the grid from position A
  • Player 2 starts at position B and makes a diagonal run behind the defender
  • Player 1 then passes to Player 2 and then makes a diagonal run in front of the defender who then passes back to Player 1
Coaching Points:
  • Good communication
  • Play quickly
  • Good weight of pass making it easier for teammate to control and return the pass
  • Timing of runs
  • Overall players get use to making diagonal runs which are a lot harder to defend than when players only play in straight lines

Dear All,

We hope everyone is enjoying the beautiful summer/winter ☺ weather and having fun watching the kids playing and competing on the fields. 

It is amazing that we only have a month left in the season, it has literally flown by.

It has been a great season with some fantastic games, sportsmanship and individual brilliance.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for participating and spending your weekends with us. We know that without the support of the parents, coaches and families, there would be no league for these players. THANK YOU!

We know that there are some major tournaments coming up including High School  Girls State and Presidents cup, plus HIT Boys and Girls and we sincerely wish all of the competing teams the best of luck!!

Enjoy the rest of the season, have a great Winter and we will see you in the Spring.

Heartland staff
October Health Tip:
Should You Work Out Twice a Day?

When it comes to exercise, it can be hard enough to get to the gym once a day, let alone twice, but sometimes multiple workouts (also known as doubles) make sense. Wondering if working out twice a day might be for you? Consider the following.

If you're an experienced endurance athlete, it might be beneficial to log the occasional second workout. If you're training for an event like a marathon or triathlon, sometimes doubles are necessary. Logging two workouts a day will allow you to increase training volume and aerobic endurance, meaning you'll be able to run, ride or swim longer before you get tired. And if you have a triathlon on your calendar, you'll want to experiment with "brick workouts," which are training sessions that include two back-to-back disciplines, like a swim-bike or a bike-run. Two-a-day workouts are especially important if you have a half or full IRONMAN on your calendar-you need to prepare your body for the rigors of a multi-hour, multisport race.

When to Double Up
Interval or speed workout days are another time when you might want to fit in a second session. If you log a tough interval workout in the morning (i.e. mile repeats on the track), consider going for an easy swim or slow jog later in the day. This can help flush waste products from your muscles, as well as speed the delivery of blood and nutrients, leading to faster recovery-essential when you have a goal race or event on the calendar. 

Not Just for Elite Athletes
Even if you don't consider yourself an athlete, doubles might have some health benefits. According to the American Heart Association, adults should get 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise (or 75 minutes of intense aerobic exercise) each week, plus a few strength-training sessions. Depending on your schedule, you might want to double up on workouts some days and take complete rest days on others. And while you may feel hardcore, logging multiple workouts in a day doesn't have to be extreme: It can be as simple as bodyweight exercises in the morning and a power walk after work. 

Sleep and Nutrition Are Even More Important
If you want to test the waters with multiple workouts, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. You should give yourself a minimum of four hours between workouts (although eight-plus is more ideal). With extra workouts, you'll also need to be more mindful of your sleep and nutrition. On days when you log multiple sweat sessions, make sure you're eating, drinking and sleeping enough. If you ignore the essentials, double workouts could lead to injury, overtraining or burnout.

Don't Overdo It
You've probably heard the saying "listen to your body," but when it comes to working out twice a day, it's more important than ever. If you've never done doubles before, ease in slowly (think once a week, not every day), and if you experience pain or find yourself struggling to get through workouts, it might be time to cut back. 

The final thing to ask yourself before you log a second workout is "why?" You want to make sure every run, ride, yoga class or weight lifting session has its purpose. If it works better for your schedule to squeeze in shorter sessions or you're going through an intense training block, doubles might make sense. But conversely, working out twice a day can be a bit of a hassle (double showers, more laundry), and it may make you more prone to injury. Finding a schedule that works for you might take some trial and error, so be flexible if you decide to dive in.

HCA Midwest Health is the official healthcare provider for Heartland Soccer Association and we work with parents and coaches to keep athletes safe and on the field of play year round, learn more about our services at  

Referee Corner:  
Reviewing handballs again...

During the Heartland Soccer Referee Meeting on October 2 nd we went over this controversial decision again and focus on when a handball infraction should be penalized.  This is one of the most difficult calls for a Referee to make. We want to be ready for the upcoming tournaments sponsored by Heartland.  With over 700 teams from 16 states participating there should be plenty of opportunities to manage appeals for a hand ball call. Let's look at what we will share again with the Referees about this foul.  
A deliberate handling violation (hand ball) remains against the Laws of the Game. 
The following 'handball' situations , even if accidental, will be a free kick: 
  • the ball goes into the goal after touching an attacking player's hand/arm 
  • player gains control/possession of the ball after it has touched their hand/arm and then scores, or creates a goal-scoring opportunity 
  • the ball touches a player's hand/arm which has made their body unnaturally bigger 
  • the ball touches a player's hand/arm when it is above their shoulder (unless the player has deliberately played the ball which then touches their hand/arm
The following will not usually be a free kick, unless they are one of the above situations: 
  • the ball touches a player's hand/arm directly from their own head/body/foot or the head/body/foot of another player who is close/near  
  • the ball touches a player's hand/arm which is close to their body and has not made their body unnaturally bigger 
  • if a player is falling and the ball touches their hand/arm when it is between their body and the ground to support the body (but not extended to make the body bigger) 
  • If the goalkeeper attempts to 'clear' (release into play) a throw-in or deliberate kick from a team-mate but the 'clearance' fails, the goalkeeper can then handle the ball.  This is one that IFAB continues to work on.
The re-wording follows a few principles: 
  • soccer does not accept a goal being scored by a hand/arm (even if accidental) 
  • soccer expects a player to be penalized for handball if they gain possession/control of the ball from their hand/arm and gain a major advantage e.g. score or create a goal-scoring opportunity 
  • it is natural for a player to put their arm between their body and the ground for support when falling. 
  • having the hand/arm above shoulder height is rarely a 'natural' position and a player is 'taking a risk' by having the hand/arm in that position, including when sliding 
  • if the ball comes off the player's body, or off another player (of either team) who is close by, onto the hands/arms it is often impossible to avoid contact with the ball 
While fans don't seem to have the challenge of making a handball call, the Laws of the Game don't make hand balls a black and white decision for the Referee.  We will continue to strive for consistency with our 1,200+ Referees so handling will become a more predictable decision for the players, coaches, and fans.
Thank you for your continued support of your Referees.  We look forward to serving you on the pitch.
Kansas ODP Girls Train at the University of Kansas 


   Papa J ohn's Heartland Referee Spotlight:

Christine Kramer
When did you start reffing?  2014

What made you decide to get certified to referee? Peter was going to certify and as he was only 14, I would have to bring him to the field, so I thought I might as well make some money too.

What is your favorite part about reffing? Seeing the younger referees get excited about a call they made and when they take a whistle for the first time and realize they liked doing it.

What is a life lesson you feel you have learned from reffing? Patience

When did you start reffing futsal? 2014

What is your favorite part about reffing futsal? The speed of the game and getting too see the skills that the players have.

What level of referee to you aspire to be? Would love to be a regional referee, but it will take a lot of training and some time
Do you participate in any sports/activities/clubs/ youth groups/ community service? Camp CUMCITO, which is a summer camp for inner city kids run by City Union Mission. I have been involved with them since 2010 and continue to help on committees. When time allows, I also spend a week volunteering at the camp.

Do you have another job in addition to reffing?  I work as an administrative assistant with an insurance company. I enjoy helping others.

What was the last book you read?  The last fiction book I read was The Cinderella Mystery. It was a mystery solving a murder of a young lady who was found with only one shoe.  The last book I read that was not fiction was the Laws of the Game, an essential book for any soccer referee.

What types of movies do you like?  I like all types of movies. The last movie I saw was Lion King, which was a lot of fun as I was able to go with Peter

What is your favorite sports team? Minnesota Vikings and Sporting Kanas City

Peter Dulany
When did you start reffing? 2014

What made you decide to get certified to referee? It was a way of getting money to be able to buy things myself.

What is your favorite part about reffing? doing different levels of games, and working with newer referees and helping them out.

What is a life lesson you feel you have learned from reffing? How to manage and communicate with others in a fast paced environment.

When did you start reffing futsal? 2014

What is your favorite part about reffing futsal? How fast paced the game is. Seeing how the players adapt to different situations. 

What level of referee to you aspire to be? I would like to be a PRO referee at some point

Do you play soccer?  I used to play, stop 2 years ago. I played for Rush, OPSC, Puma FC, and Sporting Blue Valley, I played for Olathe Northwest for 2 years.

How long have you played soccer? 14 years

Do you participate in any sports/activities/clubs/ youth groups/ community service? 
Camp CUMCITO, which is a summer camp for inner city kids run by City Union Mission. I have been involved with them since 2014. I also run weekend services at my church I recorded for our other campuses and director our Camera Operators, lighting operator and our CG operator. I also help out at your youth group as the Director. I help put the slides together, run the lights and help record for our other campuses.

Do you have another job in addition to reffing?  I am the Visual Lighting Engineer at my Church, I make sure that anything Visual or lighting is working and operating at a certain point. I also work at UPS, as a belt tender. I help break jams and deal with open, leaking packages. 
What types of movies do you like?  I mainly like action and some horror movies, The last movie I saw was Lion King, which was a lot of fun as I was able to go with my mom

What is your favorite sports team? Minnesota Vikings, and Sporting KC
We want your photos!

Heartland Soccer Association is seeking action photo shots of kids of all ages and abilities playing soccer in Heartland League Games or Tournaments.  Submitted photos may be included in Heartland Tournament, League and other promotional materials as well as social media posts.

Instructions for submitting photos:
All submitted photo files must be .jpg format, must be a minimum of 1,200 x 1,600 pixels, and no larger than 2 MB in size.  Submitting a photo doesn't guarantee that it will be used.
By submitting a photo for consideration for use in Heartland Soccer Association promotional materials, you agree that:
1.  You are the sole author of the photograph and control all rights for its use.  The photograph is original.  You have the rights to grant usage of the photograph as stated below.  There has been no prior sale, publication or transfer of rights to the photograph. The photograph shall not contain any libelous or scandalous matter.  To the best of your knowledge, the photograph's creation, publication and use shall not infringe any copyright, right of privacy or right of publicity, or infringe or violate any right of any third party.
2.    You grant to Heartland Soccer Association all rights to use the photograph in any and all forms of media, including but not limited to electronic, digital media and print.
3.     You allow Heartland Soccer Association the right to edit, revise, adapt and crop the photo as necessary.
Send Photo submissions to: [email protected]
AB May
Academy Sports and Outdoors
AC Print
Benjamin Franklin Plumbing
Big Whiskey
BFAME KC Entertainment
Commercial Capital
Dave and Buster's
Dick's Sporting Goods
Drs. Hawks, Besler, Rogers & Stoppel
Discount Tire
Dunkin' Donuts
Fry Wagner
Hasty Awards
HCA Midwest Health
Heritage Tractor Supply
Jason's Deli
Jimmy John's
Kansas City Comets
Krusich Dental
Lenny's Subs
Levine Advertising
Menorah Medical Center
Minsky's Pizza
Molle Toyota
Momo Bands
Museum at Prairiefire
Overland Park Regional Medical Center
Overland Park Ballroom
Papa John's
Raising Cane's
Research Medical Center
Rock and Brews
Rosati's of Overland Park
Salty Iguana
Security Bank
Scooter's Coffee
Soccer Master
Spin Pizza
Starting Point Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics
Sporting Kansas City
Storage Mart
Swope Park Rangers
The Storage Place
The Rub Bar-B-Que
T-riffic T-shirts
Urban Air
If you have a referee, coach, club, team or player accomplishment or a  photo that you would like to share please email:
 Katie Falco at  [email protected]