An all-female crew will officiate a USL Championship game for the first time when Tampa Bay Rowdies host Charlotte Independence this Saturday.
Tori Penso will referee the game from the center alongside assistant referees Brooke Mayo and Meghan Mullen, with Alyssa Nichols taking the role of fourth official.
FIFA officials Penso and Mayo both made their MLS debuts last season and worked together during two games in February’s 2021 She Believes Cup, while Mullen and Nichols have officiated across USL and NWSL competitions since 2019.
“PRO is pleased to be able to assign an all-female crew to a USL Championship game for the first time and are delighted for the individuals involved,” said Alex Prus, Director of PRO2 Match Officials.
“This is a reward for the dedication and ability that Tori, Brooke, Meghan, and Alyssa have continuously shown in PRO2, and reflects the country’s desire to grow refereeing opportunities for women at all levels.
“We look forward to presenting similar opportunities to more officials in the future.”
After the new USL Championship campaign kicked off last weekend, this is the first meeting in 2021 between Rowdies and the Independence, who both finished top of their respective groups last season.
Tampa Bay Rowdies vs Charlotte Independence
Al Lang Stadium (7:30PM ET)
REF: Tori Penso
AR1: Brooke Mayo
AR2: Meghan Mullen
4TH: Alyssa Nichols
Editor’s note: In June 2018, Ceciah Valero (Ref), Melissa Gonzalez (AR), Samantha Martinez (AR) and Pamela Gonzalez (4th) took charge of Orange County and Tulsa Roughnecks’ USL game. This game was assigned by U.S. Soccer and was prior to the launch of USL Championship.