Sports Roundup -- Bainbridge staying put in Metro League/Gymnasts tumble their way to win

Bainbridge staying put in Metro League

Plans to reform the Olympic League have been abandoned, at least for two years.

After months of meetings, surveys and phone calls, the Spartans will stay in the Metro League for the next two years.

“We’re a done deal,” said Neal White, Bainbridge High School athletic director.

And that arrangement won’t change even with the new enrollment numbers and preliminary classifications released by the WIAA on Dec. 5.

With 1,144 students in grades 10 to 12, Bainbridge easily made the 3A classification, but West Seattle, Ingraham and Holy Names were the only other Metro League schools to make the cut. Chief Sealth, Seattle Prep, Nathan Hale, Bishop Blanchet, Cleveland and O’Dea were bumped down to 2A, while Rainier Beach, Lakeside and Eastside Catholic were reclassified as 1A schools.

White said he expects all the teams to “opt up” and stay in Metro, a 3A conference.

“I think it’s a good fit for us,” White said. “It’s all our kids have known and a lot of our parents work on that side so they enjoy (watching their kids play in Seattle), as opposed to catching the boat back and driving two hours to Port Angeles.”

That was a possibility, with several Kitsap schools proposing to reform the Olympic League. A reconstituted Olympic would have consisted of Bainbridge, Olympic, Bremerton, Port Angeles and Shelton, which were recently reclassified as 3A schools.

Klahowya and Sequim would be in as 2A schools along with Port Townsend, which would have been the biggest 1A school represented but were bumped up to 2A.

White said that numerous changes affected that plan, including the possible addition of North Mason, who were voted out of the Nisqually League for their interest in the Olympic League.

Another problem was Peninsula, where school officials went back and forth about their interest in a reformed league.

“When they couldn’t get in anyplace else, they’re the ones that came back and became the advocate in wanting us desperately to make it work,” White said. “Now that it looks like we’re staying (in Metro) and I don’t think they knew North Mason was coming back. They left and haven’t been returning calls.”

It’s still a possibility, White said, that Bainbridge will move back into a reformed Olympic League after the two year cycle occurs and North Kitsap and the new high school in Kingston will be added to the mix.

Bainbridge baseball coach Jayson Gore is happy that the Spartans will remain in the Metro League.

“I think it’s the best 3A league in the state,” he said. “Not just for baseball, but all around. There are formidible opponents in O’Dea, Eastside Catholic, Seattle Prep, Bishop Blanchet, Lakeside.

“It’s a good test for Bainbridge to compete at that level,” Gore said, adding Metro teams “don’t rebuild, they simply reload” every year. “The traveling is a bit of a hurdle, but the reward is getting to go out and play (against good teams.)”

Volleyball coach Julie Miller agreed.

“I definietly want to stay in (the Metro League),” she said. “I think the competition is better for everybody. In some sports, it’s hard, and it makes it a little bit tougher to get to State, but I think it’s worth it.”

Miller feels that playing against tough teams in Metro makes Spartan teams prepare more and able to compete against top teams come playoff time.

She also felt the choice of travel vehicles is better.

“I’d rather sit on the ferry than on the bus,” Miller said.

Gymnasts tumble their way to win

The Bainbridge gymnastics team put its winning streak at 77 and counting with a 161.8-152.65 victory Friday over the Shorewood Thunderbirds.

Sophomore Marie Welsh won the all-around medal with a score of 36.05. Welsh placed first in the bars with a score of 8.95, first in the beam with a score of 9.00, first in the vault with a score of 8.65 and first in the floor excercise with a score of 9.45.

Sophie Wenzlau was third to Elle MacGeorge in the all-around competition with a score of 33.2. She was third in the bars, tied for second in the beam, fifth in the vault and third in the floor. Elizabeth Annis finished fifth in the all-around, while Emily Basile placed sixth.

The Spartans return to competition after winter break, when they host West Seattle and Chief Sealth at BHS Jan. 10. Meet time is at 6 p.m.

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