Valley softball, Pioneer baseball both move up class
Rochester staying in 2A for softball, baseball
BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS
Sports Editor, RTC
After a two-year stay in Class 2A, the Tippecanoe Valley softball team will be moving back to Class 3A starting in the spring of 2023, according to an IHSAA media release Friday.
Valley went 18-8 overall and 7-2 in the Three Rivers Conference last spring, but the season ended with an extra-inning loss to Rochester in the Class 2A, Sectional 37 quarterfinals at Wabash.
Valley will have a new coach in addition to a new class next season as Marc Green takes over for Brittany Mathias.
Valley has never won a softball sectional title in the class era. Valley’s only sectional title in softball occurred in 1992.
Meanwhile, Valley will stay in Class 3A for baseball.
Here is how the new classifications will affect other area schools:
Pioneer is moving from Class 1A to Class 2A for baseball and staying in Class 2A for softball.
Pioneer is staying in Class 2A for softball per the IHSAA Success Factor. Pioneer won the Class 2A state title in 2021 but lost to eventual regional champion North Newton in a sectional semifinal in 2022.
With an enrollment of 313, Pioneer will be the smallest Class 2A school in both sports.
Pioneer is also in Class 2A for volleyball, girls basketball and boys basketball due to increased enrollment for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 school years.
Rochester is staying in Class 2A for both softball and baseball. Rochester is the 10th largest school in softball and the ninth largest for baseball in 2A.
New softball coach Jim Coleman inherits a roster that had no seniors last year. The Rochester baseball team went 15-6 overall and 7-2 last season and graduated only Evan Elliott.
Argos, Caston, Culver
Argos, Caston and Culver are all staying in Class 1A for softball and baseball.
Softball and baseball notes
South Central (Union Mills) is moving from Class 1A to Class 2A for both softball and baseball. South Central is the reigning 1A semistate champion in softball and the reigning 1A regional champion in baseball. Caston lost to South Central in a baseball regional semifinal at South Bend in June. South Central has traditionally been a softball and baseball sectional rival of both Argos and Culver in Class 1A.
North Miami is staying in Class 1A for softball and baseball. North Miami is the reigning 1A regional champion in softball, and they have won five sectionals since 2011. North Miami beat Caston in a softball sectional final in 2022. Caston beat North Miami to win their first baseball sectional since 2012 on Memorial Day. North Miami will be in Class 2A for volleyball, girls basketball and boys basketball.
Winamac is staying in Class 2A for softball and baseball. Winamac won conference and sectional baseball sectional titles last spring. Mark Hendryx will be the new baseball coach this spring.
Bremen will be staying in Class 2A for softball and baseball. They are in Class 3A for volleyball, girls basketball and boys basketball.
Lafayette Central Catholic is staying in Class 1A for softball and baseball. The Knights are the reigning 1A state baseball champions. They were bumped up to Class 2A for volleyball, girls basketball and boys basketball based on increased enrollment.
The association released new classifications for softball and baseball Friday but did not reveal new sectional assignments. The IHSAA announced that the new sectional assignments will be released later this fall. The next IHSAA Executive Committee meeting is scheduled for Oct. 6.