And Miles to Go Before I Sleep
By Will Johnson
EAST TEXAS – The last two lines of the Robert Frost poem, “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening,” state, “And miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep.”
Apparently, the University Interscholastic League is a fan of Robert Frost – at least when it comes to district realignment. The UIL released its “2020-2021 and 2021-2022 Tentative Volleyball, Basketball and Football District Assignments and Reclassification Information” packet on Monday, Feb. 3 and several area teams will truly have many miles to go before they can sleep.
Starting with football, the Oakwood Panthers have been placed in District 13-1A DII. Their six-man district opponents will be: Apple Springs; Calvert; and Chester.
Grapeland made the jump from Class 2A DII to the Class 2A DI level following the 2020 realignment and will have a somewhat tougher district schedule than they faced the last two years. The Sandies have been placed in District 11-2A DI and will be joined by: Alto; Centerville; Groveton; Leon and Normangee.
The Lovelady Lions remained as a DII school and have been placed in District 11-2A DII. They will be joined by: Colmesneil; Cushing; Mount Enterprise; Overton; Tenaha; and West Sabine.
Here’s where the travel part comes in. Using Google Maps as a reference, it is approximately: 72 miles from Lovelady to Colmesneil; 70 miles from Lovelady to Cushing; 89 miles from Lovelady to Mount Enterprise; 98 miles from Lovelady to Overton; 115 miles from Lovelady to Tenaha; and 112 miles from Lovelady to West Sabine.
Moving to the Class 3A DI level, it appears the UIL actually created a district which made sense. The Crockett Bulldogs, Elkhart Elks, Trinity Tigers and Westwood Panthers will all compete in District 9-3A DI.
They will be joined in the district by the Coldspring-Oakhurst Trojans, Diboll Lumberjacks and Huntington Red Devils.
The Palestine Wildcats will finally be out of the “District of Doom,” but will stay face some stiff competition as they join Athens, Henderson, Kilgore, Lindale, Mabank and Tyler Chapel Hill in District 9-4A DI.
While the boys are on the gridiron, the girls will be at the net for a little volleyball action. The Class 2A area schools area broken up into two districts. District 21-2A will feature: Cayuga; Frankston; Grapeland; Kerens; Malakoff Cross Roads; Neches; Oakwood; and Trinidad.
District 23-2A will feature: Apple Springs; Chester; Colmesneil; Goodrich; Groveton; Kennard; Latexo; and Lovelady.
While the area 2A teams are scattered throughout two districts, at the Class 3A level, all the area teams are packaged into one district. District 20-3A will be comprised of: Buffalo; Crockett; Elkhart; Groesbeck; Teague; and Westwood.
Rounding out the area volleyball alignments, the Palestine Lady Cats will compete in District 17-4A, where they will compete against Carthage; Center; Jasper; and Rusk.
The 2020-2021 Official District Alignment for Basketball was also released on Thursday. The Class 1A level shows the smallest area schools competing in District 27-A. The schools are: Apple Springs; Groveton Centerville; Kennard; Laneville; Neches; Oakwood; and Wells.
Moving to the Class 2A level, area schools have been assigned to District 19-2A and District 20-2A. In District 19-2A, the schools are: Cayuga; Frankston; Kerens; La Poynor; Malakoff Cross Roads; and Martin’s Mill.
In District 20-2A, the schools are: Centerville; Grapeland; Groveton; Jewett Leon; Latexo; Lovelady; and Slocum.
At the 3A level, area schools were placed in District 20-3A. The schools are: Buffalo; Crockett; Elkhart; Fairfield; Franklin; Groesbeck; Teague; and Westwood.
The Palestine Wildcats and Lady Cats will compete in District 17-4A. They will face Carthage; Center; Hudson; Jasper; and Rusk in district competition.
Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at email@example.com.