By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 7/28/10
The Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) has passed a previous recommendation that reduces the number of District 1 berths for the boys’ state tournaments in 2011 and 2012 to just five spots.
In the first two years of the PIAA tourney, seven of the 16 berths went to District 1 teams for both the boys and girls. The girls’ tourneys in 2011 and 2012 will again feature seven District 1 teams.
Both boys’ and girls’ tourneys will again offer one berth each for District 12 (Catholic League champion) and District 11.
The reduced number of District 1 boys’ teams was a result of growing numbers of teams in other regions. The PIAA continues to award berths solely based on numbers, rather than strength of region as many in the Philadelphia area would prefer.
In 2011/2012, there are 58 teams registered in District 1 out of a total of 163. The number of teams in District 3 has risen to 43; that led to that district earning a fourth berth. The PIAA has also provided a berth for District 6/District 10, which has only four schools combined: Bellefonte, State College, Erie Cathedral Prep and McDowell. In the past, teams in districts with only a few members played in a larger neighboring district.
District 7 (Pittsburgh), with 30 schools, gets three berths. District 12 has 14 teams and gets one berth.
On the girls’ side, there are 71 teams in District 1 out of 164 overall. District 3 has 37 schools and gets three berths while District 7 has 29 schools and gets two berths while Districts 6/10 get one berth with four schools.
The PIAA goes on two-year cycles so the number of berths awarded will be re-examined in 2012.
The PIAA also has announced that the girls’ championship game – held before the boys’ game as part of a doubleheader at HersheyPark Stadium each of the first two years – will likely be held on Fridays in 2011 and 2012. The game will he held after the PIAA girls’ soccer title games at HersheyPark Stadium; the boys’ game will be held the following Saturday.
The PIAA had considered moving the lacrosse championship games to Lehigh in 2011 and 2012, and mentioned that it is more likely that the games will be moved to the Philadelphia area for 2013 and 2014.
It also was announced by Chairman Brad Cashman that the PIAA will consider having two classifications (AA and AAA) in 2013 and 2014. That would result in two 16-team tournaments.
Cashman said two years ago that when the total number of teams reached 200 for boys or girls, the tourney would be split in two classes.