The lone 1A school in Kitsap is looking to leave the 2A/1A Olympic League beginning with the 2020-21 school year.

Klahowya Secondary School might be one of the smaller schools in Kitsap but it’s one of the largest in the state in terms of 1A classification.

The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association set its deadline for schools to declare whether or not they will opt up, retract or submit an appeal for reclassification on Jan. 10. 

Klahowya’s Kyla Fenske-Radford dribbles against Port Townsend during an Olympic League 1A girls basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019, at KSS. The Eagles won 52-38.
(Annette Griffus/West Sound SportsPlus)

Athletic director Lauren McDaniel said with the school sitting at 449 students (9-11th), they will not opt up but are pursuing a change to the 1A Nisqually League from the 2A/1A Olympic League. Currently, Klahowya, Port Townsend and Chimacum are the only 1A schools in the league. They combine with the Nisqually for district play with just two spots available to state.

Port Townsend and Life Christian are also looking to join the Nisqually and create a nine-member league which would generate three allocations to state. Chimacum is dropping to 2B and joining District 4.

“Previously when we combine during districts we only generate two allocations,” McDaniel said. “This would provide us with a consistent path to post-season each year and allow us to face the private schools that we typically see in post-season during regular season — thus allowing us to best prepare to play them in post-season.”

McDaniel said the girls and boys swimming teams and girls bowling will seek to stay in the Olympic League as the Nisqually doesn’t offer those sports.

“If we stayed in with OL we would be a sole 1A school,” McDaniel said, and it would not give them a path to the post-season.

Lucy Mitchell of Klahowya gets ready to break through the water in the 100 breaststroke during the girls Swimvitational at the Olympic Aquatic Center Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. (Annette Griffus/West Sound SportsPlus)

The Eagles have been having more success the last couple of years — the girls softball team reached the state tournament in 2017-18 for the first time, the volleyball team went 6-0 in the OL and came within a game of qualifying for state and the girls and boys basketball teams are currently sporting a .500 or better record. The girls bowling team is undefeated (11-0, 10-0 OL) and the cross country teams placed at the state meet last fall.

All other Kitsap area schools, as well as North Mason, are staying in their respective leagues and classifications.

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