Speaking of idiosyncrasies. I’m developing a pet peeve towards ‘The Assist’. Now don¹t get me wrong. I love the build up to a goal as much as the goal itself. It’s the statistic in the college game that I have a problem with. In case one a winger gets the ball on the half way line, beats three players, has only the keeper to beat and lays the ball off to the forward who taps in from six yards. Goal to the forward, assist to the winger (Fair enough). In case two a winger gets the ball on the half way line, beats three players, shoots, keeper gets his hand on it, the ball stops on the line, the forward runs in and taps it home. Goal to the forward. Unassisted! (Hang on,that doesn¹t seem fair) In case three the goalkeeper punts the ball up the field, it bounces three times, the defender whiffs while attempting to clear and the forward taps it in. Goal to the forward. Assist to the keeper. (Really, the keeper gets an assist?)
Now you might be thinking to yourself, what difference does it make who gets the assist or how many assists are given for each goal. The truth is that it has no effect on the game but it does have a bearing on end of season all-conference, and all-American voting. I also feel a little bad for the players from yesteryear who held records for most assists. There should be two sets of records. One for players who were awarded assists in the era of single assists and a second category for the double assist era.
My old friend Carolyn Cacolice (Micheel) had a phenomenal 29 assists in her four years at UMASS. Coincidentally the same four-year stretch when the team went to the Final Four every year. She retired as the all time assist leader at UMASS but in recent years has dropped to #4 on the list behind players who have played in the era of the double assist.
Two big games coming up this weekend for the Blue Devils. Hope we get some double assists on the overtime winners in both games :-)
Until the next time.
Enjoy the Game!