YVC Considers Going to Divisions
When the new realignment of high school sports conferences takes place at the start of the 2013-14 school year, the Yadkin Valley 1-A Conference loses North Rowan while gaining North Stanly, Union Academy and Queen’s Grant.
Coupled with the current members of North Moore, Chatham Central, East Montgomery, West Montgomery, South Davidson, Albemarle, South Stanly and Gray Stone, the league swells to 11 members for the following four years.
With Union Academy being located in Monroe and Queen’s Grant in Matthews, the distance for some of the sports teams to travel is over 100 miles one way and making it a more than two-hour journey each way.
North Moore and Chatham Central would be two of the schools being the most effected by the traveling to Union Academy and Queen’s Grant and taking away valuable class time for the student/athletes, especially those sports played in the afternoon.
So faced with missed classroom time and cost of gas, the conference’s athletic directors and school administrator are considering dividing into two divisions in many of the sports.
North Moore, along with Chatham Central, East Montgomery, West Montgomery and South Davidson would make up the Eastern Division. The other six schools would be placed in the Western Division.
All of the school’s athletic directors have been meeting to iron out and establish the working of the new setup and the new conference bylaws.
“It wouldn’t be for all sports,” said Bob Collins, North Moore athletic director. “One of our biggest concerns was the missing of classroom time. To make the trip to Union Academy and Queen’s Grant for sports played in the afternoon, we would have to leave more than two hours before school is out.
“And then the trips back would be the kids getting home late. And then there is the cost of taking the buses.”
Several of the sports would remain playing all the teams in the conference, such as football, cross country, track, wrestling and swimming. Softball, volleyball, baseball, soccer, basketball, tennis and golf are sports where the teams traditionally play home-and-home series against each team in the conference.
With the divisional setup, those sports would play only home-and-home series against other schools in their respective divisions.
Then each team in the Eastern Division would play one game each against teams in the Western Division and those games would not count in their respective division standings.
They would be treated as non-conference games and each division would hold their own tournaments in their sports.
With each division crowning their own champions, those teams would be treated as No. 1 seed in the state playoffs. In other words, the western champion would receive a No. 1 seed and eastern champion would also be considered a No. 1 seed in the playoff pairings.
“Instead of North Moore making two long trips to Union and Queen’s Grant each year, we would only make one trip each year,” said Collins. “One year we would travel to Union and the next year to Queen’s Grant, never both in the same year.”
According to Collins, the North Carolina High School Athletic Association has pretty much let the conference work out their own plans and then notify the NCHSAA about the new setup.
The Smoky Mountain Conference is made up two divisions, the Big Smoky Mountain and the Small Smoky Mountain and they each receive separate playoff seeding.
There are still many other questions that need to be answered such as the handling of all-conference teams and the awarding of Wells Fargo points for the overall athletic programs at the schools.
“We’ve had several meeting and spent a lot of time addressing the different options,” said Collins. “Nothing is perfect and we’ve thrown around a lot of ideas. At the end some will be disappointed.
“The big thing is limiting missed classroom time. That’s the No. 1 issue for most of us.”
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