George Guido: PIAA enrollment numbers affect A-K Valley teams

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Saturday, January 8, 2022 | 5:31 PM


Schools discovered which classifications they’ll be playing in over the next two school years.

The PIAA delayed the disclosure of classes after some schools had miscalculated their enrollment figures based on the number of vo-tech students from their districts.

Several local changes are in the offing as the area’s demographics continue to change.

For instance, Kiski Area was the 12th-largest football school in the WPIAL as recently as 2007. Now it is the 29th largest.

To that effect, the Cavaliers will be dropping from Class 5A to 4A.

Knoch will slide from Class 4A to 3A and could drop further in the future. There were only 120 babies born in the South Butler School District in calendar year 2015, according to a report to the school board at that time.

Burrell will fall from 3A to 2A, and Plum will rise again to 5A.

Freeport continues to grow, but how much in the future is a question. More than 200 homes are planned for Buffalo Township, but many of those are so expensive people may not be able to afford kids. It’s what demographers call DINKs — double income, no kids.

Buccaneers sailing

Though it’s still early in the basketball season, Burrell won a big Section 1-4A boys contest Friday, handing Deer Lakes its first section loss 53-45.

Burrell is 3-1 in section play for the first time in five seasons.

The Bucs did it without one of their key players, senior point guard Donovan Callahan, who broke his nose in practice Thursday. Callahan said he expects to miss two or three weeks.

In the meantime, Burrell will be counting on top scorer Brandon Coury, shooting guard Macky Bennis and a cast of role players who stepped up against a Lancers team that was 7-1 entering Friday’s action — the only loss coming to Highlands.

Gavynn Thompson, better known as the center on Burrell’s football team, scored the first five Bucs points Friday after the Lancers had taken a 9-0 lead. Tajean DeGore, Brady Stone, freshman Tucker Bitar and several others will all be playing larger roles with Callahan out.

Deer Lakes coach Terence Parham said it was his most disappointing loss in his six years at the helm.

If North Catholic remains the presumptive favorite in the section, Burrell and Deer Lakes could be in for quite a battle for the No. 2 spot and a favorable playoff seeding.

Other section teams might have something to say, but for now, the Burrell-Deer Lakes rematch will be February 1 at Burrell.

Cager Classic switch

Due to a scheduling conflict at Highlands High School, the Cager Classic will be moved back a week, event officials announced last Tuesday.

Instead of the March 24-26 window, the schedule will now be

= Thursday, March 31 – Practices from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

= Friday, April 1 – Skills competition from 5:00 p.m. to 10 p.m.

= Saturday, April 2 – Girls all-star game at 5:45 p.m.; boys all-star game at 7:45.

Participating will be senior players from 21 schools from both sides of the Allegheny River.

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