KENNEWICK — The latest deadline in the WIAA’s reclassification process passed Tuesday.
When the dust settled, the three Kennewick schools stayed 3A, while West Valley (Yakima) appears headed down to 2A, leaving the CBBN possibly with a 7-7 split between 4A and 3A schools for the 2010-12 cycle.
The CBBN 4A would consist of Chiawana, Davis, Eisenhower, Moses Lake, Richland, Walla Walla and Wenatchee, while the CBBN 3A would have Eastmont, Hanford, Kamiakin, Kennewick, Pasco, Southridge, Sunnyside and West Valley if it makes the 3A cut.
Ron Williamson, an assistant superintendent in the Kennewick School District, confirmed Tuesday with the WIAA that all three high schools would fall in the 3A range.
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“We were assured that,” Williamson said. “If something were to have happened that would have put us in 2A, we would have immediately opted up to 3A.”
However, the West Valley School Board voted late Monday to keep the Rams in whichever classification their enrollment placed them.
During the initial classification detail released in early December, West Valley was safely within the 3A cutoff. But as westside schools began deciding to opt into 3A, that pushed WV down the list to where it is now on the bubble between 3A and 2A.
The WIAA will release its next classification update by Monday. Schools then have until Jan. 15 to appeal their placement or to declare their intent to opt up, but they would need league, district and WIAA Executive Board approval to do so.
Rams athletic director Joe Coscarart said while his preference was for the school to remain 3A, financial considerations prompted the board’s decision.
Reduced travel costs, as well as the renewal of old Mid-Valley League rivalries such as Selah and Prosser, meant WV could reap some savings if it fell to 2A.
How that would affect CWAC scheduling remains to be seen. For one, Quincy now is on the bubble between 2A and 1A, and if the
Jackrabbits dropped into the Caribou Trail League, West Valley would simply slide into their spot in the 10-team league.
Otherwise, the CWAC would have an 11-team scheduling nightmare in sports such as football.
The Greater Spokane League appears that it won’t have that problem with East Valley’s decision Tuesday also to remain in its enrollment classification. It appears more likely the Knights will drop to 2A, since it is smaller in enrollment than West Valley.
That leaves 10 teams in the GSL — Lewis & Clark, Central Valley, Ferris, Mead and Gonzaga Prep in 4A; Shadle Park, Mount Spokane, North Central and University in 3A; and Rogers on the bubble as either the smallest 4A school or one of the largest 3A schools, depending on if one more westside school opts into 4A.
With 12 or 13 eastside 4A schools out of 66 statewide, it appears likely they would receive three state berths each year of the two-year cycle.
Depending on how many schools end up 3A statewide, the eastside should get at least two berths per year, and perhaps garner a third berth in one of the two years.
Another bubble school is Warden, which is in the 1A SCAC East but could fall to 2B. If the Cougars drop, AD Gary Brandt said they would look at joining the North Central Washington League with teams such as Kittitas and Soap Lake.