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Committee completes Class 5A football realignment

Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association’s realignment committee has finalized football leagues for Class 5A in Southern Nevada.

The leagues have not been named and will not be called northern and southern to avoid confusion with Reno-area schools.

Gorman and Liberty, two of the state’s best teams, will be joined by Basic, Coronado, Foothill and Green Valley in the southern league. The northern league will consist of Arbor View, Canyon Springs, Centennial, Faith Lutheran, Las Vegas and Legacy.

Friday’s proposal was a continuation of last week’s meeting that was not finished because of time constraints. All proposals are unofficial and will be presented to the NIAA Board of Control at its Jan. 17 deadline for a formal vote.

Still undecided is the format for postseason play. Teams will each play five league games, and it is expected that four teams in each league will qualify for the postseason.

The realignment committee voted Friday to not make a recommendation to the board on how postseason tournaments will be aligned, with the exception of 2A and 1A football, which will remain the same. The NIAA staff will present a recommendation to the board in January.

“No changes in classifications regarding the Nye County high schools,” NIAA assistant director Donnie Nelson said in an email this week.

Friday’s meeting was not just about 5A.

In a reversal from last week, the committee voted to move Chaparral and Mojave up to 4A for football.

Xavier Antheaume, the 3A southern liaison to the board and Chaparral athletic administrator, proposed the change after fighting for the two schools to remain in 3A last week. He said he was caught off guard by Democracy Prep moving to 3A from 2A and wanted to keep the agreed-upon 12 teams in 3A. After consulting with other administrators of 3A schools, he introduced a motion to have the 3A Southern Region consist of 10 teams.

Mojave principal Greg Cole agreed that his school, which made the 3A state title game this season, and Chaparral should move up to 4A for the sake of competition.

The committee voted to have one 10-team league for the 3A Southern League to match the Northern League.

The 4A Southern Region, similar to 5A, will be aligned with a north-south orientation. Bonanza, Cimarron-Memorial, Desert Pines, Eldorado, Mojave, Palo Verde and Shadow Ridge will make up the northern league, with the southern league comprised of Chaparral, Clark, Durango, Sierra Vista, Silverado, Spring Valley and Valley.

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