Early last spring, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA), alongside principal Greg Schwab and Athletics Director and Activities Coordinator Kim Stewart made the decision to move MTHS from 3A down to 2A. This means that because Terrace’s enrollment has seen a slight dip in the last couple years, MTHS sports has transferred to a lower classification. MTHS will be playing non-league games against schools that have enrollment similar to Terrace’s.
Schwab and Stewart met with a number of community members, including coaches and parents to discuss what it meant to stay 3A or to go 2A.
“In the end it was our decision,” Schwab said. “It was a decision we made in the best interest of our student athletes… I really think it was the right decision for our athletic programs to be a 2A school.”
Schwab believes that the switch from 3A to 2A will benefit all student athletes at MTHS by giving them an opportunity to compete with schools that are at a similar caliber and size to Terrace, thus giving a more fair opportunity to the MTHS sports teams.
“When we go against Edmonds Woodway or Meadowdale or some of those bigger 3A schools you see it in the numbers,” Schwab said. “We just don’t have the numbers to compete, and when we get down into the 2A classification we’re going to see schools that are more similar to us.”
However, the switch doesn’t mean MTHS will play in the 2A league. MTHS sports teams will still be playing other teams from 3A, including rivals Edmonds Woodway, Meadowdale and Lynnwood, so in that aspect nothing will change.
A small difference that will soon show to be very obvious during the fall sports season will be more non-league games against 2A teams such as Cedarcrest and Sehome. The major change is that of how MTHS gets into the playoffs and who MTHS will be playing if that happens.
“When it comes time to go to the playoffs we will go in through the 2A league,” Schwab said.
“[The 2A league] has set up an agreement with us for how we get into the playoffs. There is different criteria we have to meet in different sports in terms of wins and losses. Then we go into the playoffs through 2A and that’s really where the difference is, where we’ll probably see a lot of different schools by that point.”
During the regular season all MTHS sports play only a few games against 2A teams at the beginning of their schedules. After that MTHS will play against schools from the WESCO division like in years past. If MTHS makes the playoffs that is when we will see 2A schools from all over the state that we haven’t played in the past. This is hopefully when the classification change will show through, creating games that are much more competitive and intense.