Forum for student expression since 1977

The Patriot Press

Forum for student expression since 1977

The Patriot Press

Forum for student expression since 1977

The Patriot Press


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KingCo League will begin multi-classification scheduling for 2024-2025

Currently, teams play against other schools in the same division during the regular season. So, Liberty and Hazen compete against each other as 3A schools, and Issaquah and Newport play as 4A schools. But starting next year, some Liberty teams may find themselves competing against Newport due to the implementation of multi-classification scheduling. 

“Instead of strictly only playing within the same division, we’re going to be playing against 4A schools and some 2A schools based off of the success of those teams over the past couple of years,” Athletic Director Matthew Stuart said. 

Three years worth of data will be used to determine next year’s matchups to ensure that the team’s average performance will be measured as best as possible. A team could have performed extremely well one year but declined in the next because of a variety of reasons like graduating seniors or a new coach. 

This change comes at an opportune time after the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) reclassified all the schools in the state based on their populations for the next year. 

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“Starting next year, KingCo will have 12 4A schools, seven 3A schools, five 2A schools and one 1A school,” Stuart said.

Liberty will remain at the 3A level but schools such as Hazen, Juanita, and Lake Washington will all move up to the 4A level after competing in the 3A division for the past four years. 

“This uneven distribution between divisions in the league is one of the reasons why we’re implementing the multi-classification scheduling for next year,” Stuart said. 

Even if a certain division size is small, this change will allow for schools to continue competing against a wide range of competitors. 

“The other reason is competitive equity,” Stuart said. “There’s a lot of blowouts in certain sports and we want to get rid of those.”

The multi-classification scheduling will be unique to each sport. If a school is dominant in one sport, they will be matched up against another school that shares similar performance levels in that sport. These matchups will be determined by a mathematical formula adopted by the Southern California Conference. 

“As a big group with a couple committees, we utilize a power ranking system to sort the schools,” Stuart said.  

The power ranking system is point based that takes into account the opponent’s division and current record to produce a new ranking of the 25 schools. The matchups are determined from that new ranking.  

“The conversation for all of this happened last school year in October 2022,” Stuart said. 

The multi-classification scheduling will come to fruition almost two years after it was first brought up for the 2024-2025 school year.  

“I think this change will ultimately be a good thing,” Stuart said. “It will help gain exposure for our players.”

Scouts or college recruiters could potentially attend more games as a result of the multi-classification scheduling and challenging opponents.

But this change will only impact the regular season. 

“Postseason is not going to change at all,” Stuart said. 

In the postseason, teams would continue to play against other schools in the same division. Tougher competition during the regular season would encourage higher level play in the postseason. 

“If it works like it’s supposed to, everything’s going to be more competitive during the regular season and every game is going to count and every game is going to matter,” Sports Medicine Teacher Mort Orren said. 

While coaches have been getting updates of what to look forward to for the next year, they too aren’t 100% sure of what this entire change will look like for their teams. 

“I think that it’s gonna take some getting used to, but I think overall, it will be beneficial,” Orren said. 

For coaches and players alike, the biggest obstacle will be adjusting to this new change in the coming year. 

“At first I thought it was a bad idea because I don’t like change, but now, I do think it’ll be good,” Boys Soccer and Football Coach Darren Tremblay said. 

Tremblay also hopes that by playing against more schools of the same level, the number of injuries will be minimized. 

“For the league and for Liberty, I like it. I think it’s a good thing and I think it’ll make our schedules and our games really exciting,” Stuart said.  “It’ll still give us a really good shot in the postseason and competing for state championships.”

About the Contributor
Kylie McGrath
Kylie McGrath, Editorial Board Member
Kylie McGrath is a senior at Liberty High School. She is a Sports Editor and an Editorial Board Member for the Patriot Press. She is also one of the captains for the Liberty’s Girls’ Golf team. If she’s not golfing or doing homework, she’s probably eating with her family!