With the launch of the fall 2014 athletic season, changes have come to both the South Puget Sound League 3A and 2A ranks as one team moved up a classification, a couple moved down and another simply changed one address for another.
Change comes when the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association looks at enrollment figures every two years, attempting to keep its six classifications evenly balanced. Enrollment ranges are shuffled every time the exercise is completed, so the 4A, 3A, 2A and 1A classifications each account for 17 percent of the state’s schools; the smaller 1B and 2B classifications get 16 percent each.
Some schools choose to opt up for a variety of reasons, playing outside their classification. Locally, Bonney Lake High School fits that description; despite 2A numbers, those who control Panther athletics prefer playing in the SPSL 3A.
Compared with last spring, both South Puget Sound League divisions now have a new look. Sumner has grown and has departed the 2A ranks for the 3A. Taking the Spartans’ place will be River Ridge, which was granted membership. Through the spring 2014 season, River Ridge competed in the 2A Evergreen Conference.
The biggest change has come to the SPSL 3A, which has grown from six to eight teams.