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New mercy rule approved for high school baseball, softball

The Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association had their annual summer meeting last week, approving a new mercy rule for softball/baseball, and an 11-game regular-season football schedule for Bishop Gorman.

The new mercy rule for softball and baseball means parents and Trojans supporters won’t be spending hours of their time watching one team trounce another in unbalanced contest.

This was an issue last year in 12 Trojans softball games out of 26 games. In baseball it happened 11 games out of 29 games for the Trojans.

The new rule allows for umpires to call games that are totally unbalance earlier than five innings.

The rule states that if a team reaches a 15-run lead after three innings, the game can be ended. The 10-run rule will also still exist, which allows for a game to be called after five innings if a team has a 10-run lead.

“This was a good thing and a long time coming,” Trojans athletic director Ed Kirkwood said.

New basketball tournament venue

The NIAA is searching for a new home for its state basketball tournament when the tourney is held in Las Vegas. The tourney alternates each year between the North and the South.

Las Vegas hosts state basketball in odd-numbered calendar years and will host the tournament in the 2016-17 season.

“The Orleans Arena needed an answer last week,” NIAA assistant director Jay Beesemyer said. “Now if they change their mind, we could end up back there, but we are now searching for a new place.”

The loudest part of the meeting of course involved Bishop Gorman.

According to the NIAA, the maximum games a football team can play is 10 games, including a designated Hall of Fame game, which allows teams to play the 10th game if they make a contribution to the NIAA’s Hall of Fame.

The Gaels were in a four-team league last year and for this coming season moved to a larger league due to realignment. Bishop Gorman said they had already booked five non-league games in February based on their old league, which allowed them those games. In their new league they are in a seven-team league this year that allows only four non-league games.This meant that they had to seek permission for the 11th game.

Clark County schools are permitted only nine games as the district will not pay for a school to play a Hall of Fame game. Gorman is not a CCSD member school.

The Trojans also play only nine games.

Kirkwood was surprised by the 4-1 decision for approval.

“There were a lot of vocal schools against this in Clark County saying that Gorman would have an advantage playing two more extra games,” Kirkwood said. “To me, though, it made sense what the Gaels were saying. If I had a vote, I would have approved it. They had booked that fifth game knowing they were in a league that allowed them to do that. I know it takes a long time to book out-of state-teams with hotel and airfare. Besides this is a one-time thing.”

Gorman will play Cedar Hill (Texas) to start its season on Aug. 27. The Gaels also have a game scheduled at St. John Bosco (California) on Sept. 9 and have home games against Cocoa (Florida) on Sept. 2, Kahuku (Hawaii) on Sept. 17 and St. Thomas Aquinas (Florida) on Sept. 30.

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