Buford and White County will battle each other in Region 8-AAAA for the next two school years. / photo: Brian Oliver
AREA REGIONS APPROVED BY THE GHSA FOR 2014-15, 2015-16
Riverside Military Academy
George Walton Academy
Prince Avenue Christian
Rabun Gap Nacoochee School
MACON -- Get ready for some tough competition in Region 8-AAAA. For the next two years, it may be one of the toughest leagues in the state.
After a lengthy session of the GHSA's Executive Committee on Tuesday in Macon, the new regions for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 school years were approved, including an 8-AAAA that includes Buford, Chestatee, Johnson, Madison County, Monroe Area, North Hall, North Oconee, Stephens County and White County.
There were some last-minute appeals heard -- and approved -- for Thomas County Central, Cook and Pike County, but the new classes and regions set for northeast Georgia's schools remained the same as those proposed by the GHSA's Reclassification Committee in December.
The changes for area athletic programs for the next two school years include:
-- Habersham Central will move from Region 7-AAAAAA to Region 6-AAAAAA, shifting from a Gwinnett County-based region to a Forsyth County/north Fulton County-based region.
-- Region 8-AAAAA added Lanier (the only change to the current set-up).
-- Region 7-AAA added Lumpkin County and Franklin County after losing Buford, North Hall and White County.
-- Region 8-AAA will consist of three schools in Jackson County (East Jackson, Jackson County and Jefferson).
-- Region 8-AA's only change is the loss of Jefferson.
-- Region 8-A's only change is the loss of Pincecrest Academy (moved to Region 6-A).
It was another year for the record books in 2014, mostly for the right reasons -- state championships, new challenges and new stars taking their turn to shine. But there were also plenty of big stories that reminded us that sports -- like life -- isn
Junior pitcher Courtney Poole struck out four while giving up just two hits to lead the University of North Georgia softball team to a 5-0 win against Dixie State and the program's first national title.
Wayne Vickery coached his way to five state championships with Gainesville baseball -- and the outgoing Gainesville High athletic director sees similarities between one of those title winners and the 2015 squad.