The LHSAA’s executive committee approved basic districts for 2015-17 on Wednesday morning but not without some heated discussion. Another executive committee session is set for 1 p.m. to address eligibility appeals and bids for state wrestling.
The only change that was approved came in Class 2A and involved a few teams in the New Orleans area.
The committee approved splitting 9-2A into separate districts. The proposal was made by Doyle Principal Tommy Hodges, an executive committee member whose school is part of the north shore league.
Doyle, French Settlement, St. Helena Central, Springfield and St. Helena Central will be one of the new half districts. Archbishop Hannan, Northlake Christian, Pine and Pope John Paul II would make up the other.
The two districts will combine for football.
There were two other notable changes for New Orleans area schools.
East Jefferson was approved to move up to Division I in volleyball.
Holy Cross’ request to compete in Division I for wrestling and tennis also was approved.
John Curtis’ move to the Catholic League, first reported in January, is now official as well.
Only one notable change was made from the basic Plan 3 released previously by the LHSAA staff.
Christian Life Academy’s appeal to be classified in Class 1A and instead of 2A was denied. CLA Principal Peter Barnes cited a clerical error in reporting of the school’s enrollment figures last fall to Louisiana’s State Department of Education.
Also denied was a request from Ascension Christian to move from Baton Rouge’s 6-1A to the New Orleans-based 8-1A. So was Donaldsonville High’s request to moved from Baton Rouge’s District 6-3A to a league that includes St. Mary Parish schools.
The most heated exchanges revolved around the placement of Thibodaux-based E.D. White in a seven-team District 8-3A that includes schools as far-reaching as Kaplan. An appeal by Opelousas Catholic to alter Class 2A districts to shift Notre Dame to a southwest-based district also was denied.
“We’re good, it’s whatever,” Kaplan’s Stephen Lotief said after being allowed to voice his displeasure to the committee. There are 25 other schools between us and them (E.D. White) that we could be placed in a district with. You’re talking about 200-mile trips.”
See the New Orleans prep blog at TheNewOrleansAdvocate.com for a complete list of districts with New Orleans area teams.