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Two-year state title idea silenced

Beekmantown's Hayden Head has his arm raised as NYSPHSAA state champion at 285-lbs. Saturday, Feb. 25.

Beekmantown's Hayden Head has his arm raised as NYSPHSAA state champion at 285-lbs. Saturday, Feb. 25. Photo by Keith Lobdell.

— What if the Section VII championship was the ultimate triumph?

No regionals. No states.

No five-time or back-to-back titles for Chazy soccer.

No final four for Saranac girls basketball.

No Hayden Head pinning his way to a title at the Times Union Center, or Arik Robinson doing it four straight times.

That may just become a reality if a recent proposal is adopted — at least for the next two years.

Recently, Section XI proposed to the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) a two-year hiatus on state championships in all sports, starting in the 2013-14 season. They also proposed that once championships return, they only be held in “major” sports.

Stephen Broadwell, Willsboro Central School Superintendent and Second Vice President of the NYSPHSAA, said the proposal did not go much beyond the initial talks.

“With the Association, everything is an open forum and each section has their ideas and opinions,” Broadwell said. “They are welcome to bring them to the floor and that is what Section XI did, but it really did not receive a lot of support for those proposals.”

Part of the issue for Section XI, which is located in the Long Island region, was the amount of time that it took to get to some of the state championship sites (swimming is held at Erie Community College in Buffalo, for example).

Broadwell said the NYSPHSAA is always looking to more centrally locate championship sites.

“We continue to look at costs and how to save while still hosting quality tournaments and championship events,” Broadwell said. “We are trying to find ways to reduce the costs for all sections because we know where a lot of them sit with budgets.”

Broadwell said that he felt the state championships were a great chance for high school student-athletes from throughout the state to compete at the highest level, along with a source of pride for the communities they represent.

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