Faith Lutheran to climb to 4A in 2009

Coaches and administrators at Faith Lutheran saw in March where their school was headed in 2012: Class 4A.

So the Crusaders expedited the process, petitioning to move up from 3A beginning in the 2009-10 school year. The move was approved at this week's Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association Board of Control meeting in Reno.

The board decided in March to double private schools' enrollments in order to determine their classification in the next realignment period, which begins in 2012. That measure was officially approved this week.

Faith Lutheran, which has about 725 students, would be classified at 1,450 for alignment purposes in 2012, meaning the school would be forced to move up then anyway.

"After discussions at the school, we just felt if that was the road we were headed down, we were better off to start now," Faith Lutheran athletic director Bret Walter said. "We would be in better shape if we started now."

Walter said Pahrump Valley's move from 3A to 4A, effective this fall, also prompted his school to move up early. Pahrump's move leaves only four teams -- Faith Lutheran, Boulder City, Moapa Valley and Virgin Valley -- in the 3A Southern League, and Walter said it was difficult to complete schedules, especially for junior varsity and freshman teams.

"If we can't fill the schedule with 4As, the only thing that's left is out of state or 2As, and many times the smaller schools don't have freshman programs or in some cases, JV programs," Walter said.

"If you're going to keep developing your programs, you have to develop your (younger) kids."

GIRLS SOCCER GOES INDEPENDENT -- The Clark County School District's Class 4A girls soccer teams will play an independent season in the winter for the 2008-09 school year.

While the NIAA Board of Control voted Wednesday to move all girls soccer to the fall for 2008-09, Clark County schools will continue to play in the winter in order to avoid a lawsuit filed by the parent of a Green Valley student.

The suit contends that moving the season to the fall would violate Title IX, which guarantees equal treatment between male and female students.

Any Class 4A postseason events for girls soccer in Southern Nevada for the upcoming season will not be sanctioned by the NIAA.

Though Pahrump Valley moves to 4A in the fall, it is expected to be allowed to remain in the 3A Southern League for girls soccer next season.

KNEZEVIC COMMITS -- Liberty boys basketball standout Milos Knezevic has orally committed to play at Bradley.

Knezevic, a 6-foot-8-inch post player, averaged 14 points and eight rebounds for the Patriots as a junior this past season, including career highs of 28 points and 16 rebounds.

Contact Prep Sports Editor Damon Seiters at or 702-380-4587.