Shuffle of local teams likely to pass committee vote
by Bob Brownne
Feb 01, 2013 | 2293 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
One of the few Sac-Joaquin Section league realignment proposals that shouldn’t face opposition is one to shuffle the San Joaquin Athletic Association and Tri-City Athletic League in 2014.

TCAL commissioner Steve Lopez and SJAA commissioner Randy Snider told the section’s realignment committee that all 12 schools in the two leagues agreed that in 2014, Tracy, Lincoln and Lodi will move to TCAL to join West, St. Mary’s and Tokay. Edison, McNair and Stagg will move to the SJAA, which would also include Bear Creek, Chavez and Franklin.

The two commissioners made the proposal during the committee’s public hearing Tuesday, Jan. 29, at The Reserve in Stockton.

Realignment committee co-chairman Chuck Edmonds said the committee moved the SJAA-TCAL proposal to the top of the agenda, because it was the easiest.

“I think if you’ve been here a while you can see what we’re looking for is not one school saying, ‘I don’t like this,’” Edmonds said. “We want leagues and schools who have communicated with each other on an agreement.”

More than 150 school administrators and athletic directors showed up at the hearing, many to explain why their schools wouldn’t fit into the proposals made at the committee’s Jan. 8 meeting.

The Sac-Joaquin Section realignment committee is tasked with placing 183 schools into 26 leagues with consideration to schools’ location, size and competitive level.

Most SJAA and TCAL schools have student populations between 1,880 and 2,710, which puts the schools in divisions I or II, depending on the sport. St. Mary’s, a private Catholic school in Stockton, has fewer than 1,000 students, but it can compete in the TCAL because it can enroll student-athletes from other school districts.

“We basically applied the same criteria to our 12 schools that the section does in their realignment proposals, just a smaller group,” Snider said.

Snider explained that the new SJAA-TCAL proposal is based on the types of sports the schools offer. Schools in the new TCAL would offer more sports, such as water polo, swimming and freshman teams, that not all the schools in the new SJAA offer.

Lopez noted that Kimball High could eventually be placed into one of the proposed leagues, but for now it will likely stay in the Valley Oak League.

Among the other leagues discussed, the VOL, now in Division IV, got plenty of attention. The committee heard resistance to moving Oakdale from the VOL up to the Division II Modesto Metro Conference.

Representatives of the MMC and the Division I Central California Conference said they prefer to keep the two leagues as 14 schools from three school districts.

Norman Antinetti, commissioner of the VOL, said both his league and the Division IV Western Athletic Conference opposed trading the VOL’s Lathrop and Weston Ranch for the WAC’s Patterson and Central Valley.

The realignment committee will have a revised master proposal for review at its Feb. 19 meeting, which is also at The Reserve in Stockton.

• Contact Bob Brownne at 830-4227 or brownne@tracypress.com.
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