Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation Scientist Works Weekends on the Soccer Field

Article excerpt

Autoimmune diseases take up much of Hal Scofield's time, but when he gets away from the laboratory of office, he's all about soccer.

The 48-year-old Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation researcher can tell you all you'd care to know about Sjogren's syndrome or lupus, and he can chew the fat about the World Cup or any other soccer issue.

Scofield is an enthusiast of the game, and he finds officiating to be quite interesting, to say the least.

Some of the soccer moms and dads out there have bent his ear from time to time.

"I mostly go out to North Oklahoma City Soccer Club and ref either under-12 or under-19 leagues," Scofield said. "It's amazing how the younger-age kids don't really care, yet their parents are wild. They're always on you. But it's a lot of fun."

Scofield and his 16-year-old son, Stuart, both officiate games.

"We let it roll of our backs," he said of the criticism from sidelines. "Most yelling is silly because they don't really know the rules. As the players get older, the parents are less vocal. Really, the kids drive themselves to the games, so there aren't as many people there."

It's enjoyable, nonetheless.

Last year was a tough one on the field.

"I was sidelined by a broken and dislocated ankle," he said. "I'm just now getting back." The injury required surgery, which included the insertion of hardware.

Soccer officiating provided a nice payoff for the Scofield refs last summer. …