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Originally published October 22, 2010 at 10:01 PM | Page modified October 22, 2010 at 11:32 PM

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Pink whistle blowers might be penalized

Referees who blew pink whistles to raise breast-cancer awareness might have to give up game checks for working out of uniform.

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Penalties might be coming for dozens of referees who used pink whistles at high-school football games Thursday night.

Referees from the Pacific Northwest Football Officials Association used the colorful the whistles to raise awareness for breast-cancer research, and donated their game checks to Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

But Todd Stordahl, commissioner of the Washington Officials Association, said they didn't ask for permission.

"They chose not to ask for permission, not to go the right route," Stordahl told KING-TV, saying the move set a precedent.

"It sends the wrong message to kids that are playing the game. 'If they broke the rules, why can't I do the same.' "

Stordahl said the WOA might keep the pink whistle blowers from officiating two playoff games as a result. That means the referees could lose two game checks.

There was a fundraiser at the Inglemoor-Garfield game Thursday night to benefit the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Inglemoor coach Frank Naish lost his sister to breast cancer this year.

They were pleased by the referee's effort.

"I think it's perfect. It's great," Naish's wife Teri told KING-TV. "I think it's a shame (if they're penalized). The message we're sending is simple. We're looking for a cure for breast cancer."

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