This year, CVHS sports teams began to compete in a new league called the West Alameda County Conference (WACC), a more competitive and challenging league than the Hayward Area Athletic League (HAAL).
“WACC is more exciting and it’s nice to compete against different schools and see new competitors,” said senior swimmer Danica Tse.
This new conference is made up of teams from Castro Valley, Alameda, Arroyo, Berkeley, O’Dowd, Encinal, Hayward, Mt. Eden, Piedmont, San Leandro, San Lorenzo and Tennyson and is divided into two leagues for each varsity sport and gender.
According to Andy Popper, the athletic director of CVHS, the school has won six WACC championships during the 2012-2013 school year, one each in boys wrestling, girls softball, boys and girls swimming, girls track and field, and boys tennis. In the 2011-2012 school year, as part of HAAL, CVHS won seven HAAL championships, in boys tennis, boys and girls swimming, boys and girls track and field, boys baseball, and girls softball.
“In HAAL we would have almost all our swimmers place in the Top 10 at the league championships,” said Brian Berry, coach of the CVHS swimming team. However, with the new and improved competition, Berry said he personally needed to think more strategically to better the team’s performance.
Part of the purpose of switching from HAAL to WACC was to provide CVHS teams with more challenging opponents, allowing for more competition, as well as to better train them for NCS and state championships.
The teams are more challenging, and they do offer more competition,” said Tse. “Being in WACC is a way to improve ourselves. It wasn’t as nerve-racking going to NCS and being surprised by our competition.”
Even though CVHS has won fewer WACC championships,compared to HAAL championships, it only shows that WACC is indeed more challenging and competitive, just as it was promised to be. Berry approved of the switch, saying, “Anything that creates competitive equity for high school athletes is a positive thing. We are looking forward to being challenged in the coming years in the WACC and continuing to bring CVHS conference titles!”