Placer’s Montoya says Sac-Joaquin Section realignment proposal makes no sense

Hillmen plan to protest plan to send school to CAL
By: Matthew Kimel, Journal sports editor
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Which league would you prefer to see Placer High in?


Placer High School football coach Joey Montoya says the proposed realignment by the Sac-Joaquin Section to move the Hillmen from the Pioneer Valley League to a new-look Capital Athletic League makes no sense.

“We are the third biggest school in our league when you take out cross country and tennis,” Montoya said Tuesday night after the possible realignment announce was made earlier in the day in front of a committee in Stockton. “We are the third-place team in championships in the last six or seven years. We’re behind Bear River and Colfax. Everybody competes. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense why we would be the ones to leave.”

Under the proposal, Bear River, Colfax, Foothill, Center and Lincoln would stay in the PVL, with Mira Loma replacing Placer.

Montoya said that both Lincoln and Center will have larger enrollments than Placer next year.

“They’re getting rid of one school that has 1,300 (Placer) and adding one school that has 1,500 (Mira Loma),” he said.

Lincoln has some 1,800 students.

Under the new proposal, Placer will play against teams that aren’t geographical rivals and which are further distances away from the Auburn school. The other schools included in the new CAL would be Casa Roble, Christian Brothers, El Camino, Oakmont, Sacramento High and Vista del Lago.

“Our travel time would be double,” Montoya said. “We’d lose money in the gates. Aside from a couple of teams in that league, we wouldn’t have any built-in rivals. We’d lose money in the gates. We’d be probably close to the smallest school in the league. Not that we can’t compete, but why break up a bad thing?”

Earlier Tuesday, Richard T. Estrada of Black Hat Football tweeted from the meeting that Colfax High told the section’s committee that it didn’t want to be a part of the PVL if Placer stayed in the league.

Placer Athletic Director Mark Lee has already submitted a petition to the section that the school plans to protest the proposal, Montoya said.

“We have what we think are good logical explanations,” Montoya said of why the Hillmen should remain in the PVL. “Hopefully they’ll listen.”

Of the six other teams in the potential CAL, Montoya said he can only make sense of Vista del Lago and Oakmont being grouped with Placer.

“I could even see Oakmont coming to the PVL,” he said. “… The rest makes no sense. We trust the system and whatever happens, happens. We’re going to do our best to fight and stay in the PVL.”

The next realignment committee meeting is set for Jan. 29.

“A lot of things can change,” Montoya said. “This is just a preliminary meeting. I know the section expects this to be one of the more fiery realignments because there’s so much change. And it’s not small change — it’s big change.”

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