Technical Official Spotlight: Kim Scott on the Upcoming FIH Hockey Junior World Cup

There’s a lot that goes into making sure a field hockey game runs safely and smoothly, and every athlete knows the importance of the on-field officials to the sport. But how much do you know about the behind-the-scenes job of being a technical official? USA Field Hockey caught up with Technical Official Kim Scott, who will be heading to Santiago, Chile to represent USA at the FIH Hockey Women’s Junior World Cup this November.

Rutgers graduate Kim Scott is an International Elite Panel Technical Official. She has been a technical official for more than 180 international matches, representing USA at events such as the FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup and FIH Hockey Pro League. She talked about her start in the world of technical officiating – a love for field hockey that led her to wanting to stay involved in the sport after college.

“I started I think in 2012 while I was in grad school at Rutgers University. After college, I was playing in an adult league in New York City. For me, I have loved and lived and breathed the sport of field hockey since the time I picked up a stick in high school. I knew after playing at a Division I school that I really wanted to stay involved so I was kind of looking at ways I could keep playing and get involved even more.”

"My coach Nigel Traverso is actually the one who introduced me to being a tech official. He asked me if I would like to help out with Big Apple Indoor and I kind of tried it out and was like ‘okay, I like this’.”

To some, the actual role and responsibilities of a technical official may be unknown. Technical officials work alongside the on-field umpires to make sure the game happens – safely and smoothly – but without having to stand in the spotlight.

“For me, I always knew I didn’t want to be an umpire, because they are always in the spotlight, and I do not like being in the spotlight. As a tech official, we kind of do a lot of the behind the scenes stuff, anything from the statistics for the scoring as well as timing and cards, but other things I don’t think people really realize is that we’re also in charge of doing a lot of the equipment checks, the color appointments, and just everything to kind of make sure that the game actually happens nicely and smoothly.”

Being a technical official ties in nicely for Scott, who is an engineer by trade.

“As an engineer, I am kind of really interested and into the little tidbits and the details on statistics, as well as how you set up the computer system that runs a lot of the matches. For me, it kind of made sense. As a tech official, I get to watch the whole game and actually enjoy it, while getting to take down all their stats.”

Next up for Scott in her international travels is the FIH Hockey Women’s Junior World Cup. She will be joining the U.S. U-21 Women’s National Team, who qualified back in April at the Junior Pan American Championship, in Santiago, Chile this November to represent USA.

“I’m really looking forward to Junior World Cup because I think watching the juniors it’s kind of that first look we get at some of the rising stars… So I’m looking forward to seeing some of our new and rising stars, and kind of just seeing ‘okay, who’s going to be the up and coming best?’.”

“I think this event is going to be different than some of the previous events that I’ve been to, based on the fact that we get to see some of the juniors play, as well as this is my first time that I’ll be in Chile so I’m really looking forward to just taking in that whole experience in itself. I am looking forward to seeing some of my friends that I have met along the way who are tech officials as well as umpires, and then also meeting new people as well.”

Scott offered some advice for those who share her enthusiasm for the sport, encouraging them to continue to be involved even after their time as a player.

“As far as if I could give any advice to others who are up and coming or are considering how they can keep involved in the sport, I think the one thing that a lot of people don’t realize is that you can still be involved in field hockey once you are graduated and are no longer playing in NCAA. Hockey doesn’t have to stop – you can be an umpire, you can be a tech official, there’s plenty of opportunities along the way. You can play as well, so if you really love the sport you should maybe consider being a tech official or umpire. It gives you another perspective of the game, as well as the opportunity to meet a lot of different people from all over the world who love the sport just as much as you.”

Watch the full interview: