High School Sports

WIAA reclassification preliminary numbers released

Mountain View High School football player Avi Bharth at practice, Friday, August 30, 2013. (Steven Lane/The Columbian)

Mountain View High School football player Avi Bharth at practice, Friday, August 30, 2013. (Steven Lane/The Columbian)

The WIAA released preliminary enrollment numbers last week that will be used to position schools in the next reclassification cycle that begins next fall.

It’s important to remember these numbers are preliminary numbers and that these enrollment breakdowns could change over the coming weeks.

Schools now have the option to contest or correct these preliminary enrollment numbers, which could allow them to move down in classification from where they are currently slotted. Schools also have the option to “opt-up” and compete in a higher classification than where they are currently slotted.

So here is where these preliminary numbers tentatively position schools in Southwest Washington District 4:

CLASS 4A (1234-2099)

GSHL (7)

As expected, Mountain View moves back up to 4A after a four-year stint at 3A. That moves the 4A GSHL to a seven-team league. That means a 12-game league season for most sports, and six for others (like football). It means for basketball, league games starting before the holiday break, something that has been avoided in the current six-team structure. In football, it means non-league games in Weeks 1 and 2, with league play running Weeks 3 through 9 and one team each week receiving a league bye to be replaced by a non-league game. There are three potential 4A schools inside District 4′s boundaries — Olympia (1287.1), Yelm (1266.0), Timberline (1255.9) — likely will apply or reapply for membership in District 3 and join the Narrows League.

CLASS 3A (945-1234)

GSHL (5)

Now, it’s the 3A GSHL to deal with the headaches of being a five-team league. It offers real challenges to these schools to fill out a non-league schedule. For some sports, it means a four-game league schedule, eight for others, and others may even opt for a 12-game league schedule. River’s number puts the Chieftains very close to the cut off with 2A, leaving some to believe River could be a 2A team if schools are shuffled over the coming weeks. However, in the past, River officials have not been interested in being a 2A school and would likely opt-up to stay at 3A. There are three potential 3A schools inside District 4′s boundaries — North Thurston (1093.1), Shelton (1083.0) and Capital (990.9) — likely will apply or reapply for membership in District 3 and join the Narrows League. A five-team league also would impact the number of teams from the league that advance to the postseason.

CLASS 2A (449-942)

GSHL (6)

Evergreen Conference (7)

The good news for the 2A GSHL is a return to a six-team league, which makes scheduling easier. It’s not good news for Woodland, which struggled in its previous stint in the 2A GSHL and thrived in the 1A Trico over the past two school years. And you’ll notice how the GSHL schools have smaller enrollments than most of their Evergreen counterparts.

CLASS 1A (188-434)

Trico League (7)

Evergreen Conference (6)

The Trico loses Woodland to the 2A GSHL. In the last reclassification cycle, King’s Way Christian and Seton Catholic opted-up to join the 1A Trico, largely because of travel issues.

CLASS 2B (81-188)

Central League (11)

Pacific League (6)

Travel was a big factor that led King’s Way and Seton to opt-up in the last reclassification process. Most schools in the Central 2B League are farther away the most schools in the 1A Trico League. But another option could be to partner with Columbia Adventist to make the Columbia Valley League into a split-classification 2B/1B League.

CLASS 1B (0-81)

Columbia Valley League (5)

Coastal League (6)

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