Lakeridge, Lake Oswego eye upcoming changes to Three Rivers League
You've heard the phrase "Another day, another dollar," right?
For the Oregon School Activities Association and its Classification and Districting Committee, it's morphed that idiom into "Another month, another meeting, another iteration of the Three Rivers League."
The Classification and Districting Committee, which has been working since October of 2016 on its quadrennial rearrangement of the state's high school sports leagues, held its 10th public meeting on June 20 and released its report from that meeting on June 29.
While the committee's work is not yet done — the group will meet again at 9 a.m. Aug. 28 and Sept. 25 at the OSAA offices, 25200 S.W. Parkway Avenue Ste. 1 in Wilsonville — it seems clear that the committee is now fine-tuning its proposal for the 2018-22 time block.
The latest proposal
The latest model forwarded by the committee features six classifications, with 56 Class 6A teams divided among seven leagues. The OSAA's report from its June 20 meeting again emphasized the Classification and Districting Committee's "broad support for the six-classification system," while earlier proposals had considered reducing the number of classifications to five and arranging football leagues separately.
Further, until the OSAA gets new enrollment numbers in the fall, it will continue to work with the current cutoff points — schools at the Class 6A must have 1,194 students or more, or must choose to "play up" — as it arranges the state's high school leagues.
Under the latest proposal, known as "Draft #18," the next iteration of the Three Rivers would include the following schools (their current attendance numbers are in parentheses): Canby (1,316); Lake Oswego (1,307); Lakeridge (1,126 with a request to "play up"); Oregon City (1,940); St. Mary's (1,435); Tigard (1,771); Tualatin (1,770); and West Linn (1,707).
If adopted, this proposal would move Oregon City into the TRL from the Mt. Hood Conference, while moving Newberg and Sherwood out to the reconstituted Pacific Conference.
For its part, Lakeridge is happy with the latest proposal.
"If this iteration is adopted, we are glad that Lakeridge (would remain) in the highly competitive Three Rivers League," said new Lakeridge athletic director Terry Moore, who succeeded Ian O'Brien on July 1. "That level of competition during the regular season helps to hone our skills for the playoffs."
Likewise, Lake Oswego is glad to be staying home in the Three Rivers League.
"I am happy that we are staying ... in the same conference," said Lake Oswego athetic director Brigham Baker. "I know ... there is a lot of shuffling happening, but we have not been a school that has been moved too much."
The most recent draft prior to this, known as Draft #16, would have included Canby, Clackamas, Lake Oswego, Lakeridge, Oregon City, Sherwood, St. Mary's Academy and West Linn in the Three Rivers League.
"While we would miss Newberg and Sherwood, it will be great to have Oregon City back in our league again," Moore added. "They have an outstanding rivalry with West Linn."
Around the state
Around the rest of the state, Draft #18 — if adopted — would bring about the following changes:
• The Portland Interscholastic League would remain the same, with four of its nine teams electing to "play up."
• The Metro League would add new school Mountainside to its ranks, while moving Century, Glencoe and Liberty out to the Pacific Conference.
• The new version of the Pacific Conference would include Century, Forest Grove, Glencoe, Hillsboro, Liberty, Newberg and Sherwood.
• The Mt. Hood Conference would add Sandy — currently a Class 5A school — to its ranks while moving Oregon City to the Three Rivers League.
• The Greater Valley Conference would move Forest Grove and North Salem out, with Forest Grove heading to the Pacific Conference and North Salem down to the Class 5A Mid-Willamette Conference.
• And the Southwest Conference would add Bend, Mountain View and Summit.