Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association

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Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association
PIAA newlogo.png
Map of USA highlighting Pennsylvania.png
Abbreviation PIAA
Formation December 29, 1913
Type Volunteer; NPO
Legal status Association
Purpose Athletic/Educational
Headquarters 550 Gettysburg Rd.
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055
Region served
Pennsylvania
Membership
1,452 schools
Official language
English
Executive Director
Robert Lombardi
Affiliations National Federation of State High School Associations
Staff
13
Website piaa.org
Remarks (717) 697-0374

The Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association, Inc. (PIAA) is one of the governing bodies of high school and junior high school sports for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, United States.

PIAA member schools are known for some of the most highly regarded and competitive high school sports programs in the U.S.[citation needed] The state's lacrosse, football, field hockey, swimming & diving, wrestling, cross country, and basketball programs are considered among some of the best in the U.S.[citation needed]

The PIAA main office is located in the Harrisburg suburb of Mechanicsburg.

History[edit]

The old PIAA logo

Beginning in Pittsburgh, on December 29, 1913, the PIAA was charged with serving its member schools and registered officials by establishing policies and adopting contest rules that emphasize the educational values of interscholastic athletics, promote safe and sportsmanlike competition, and provide uniform standards for all interscholastic levels of competition.

As a result of the cooperative efforts of its membership, PIAA has assisted intermediate school, middle school, junior high school, and senior high school students in participating in interscholastic athletic programs on a fair and equitable basis, thus producing important education benefits.

Districts[edit]

The PIAA divides its member schools' counties into 12 geographical districts for the purpose of state championship competition. The following list is the district breakdown by county.

While this is a general outline of the districts, there are some notable exceptions:

East vs. West[edit]

Traditionally for state championship competition for team sports, Pennsylvania is divided into Eastern and Western regions. Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 11, and 12 usually make up the Eastern Region; Districts 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 usually comprise the Western Region. The winners of each region compete against each other for the state championship. However, since the creation of District 12 with the admission of the Philadelphia Public Schools into the PIAA, the East vs. West format has been abandoned for some sports in certain classifications, particularly at the Class AAAA level where there are more large schools in the East. For example, in PIAA football, District 3 schools compete in the early rounds of the state playoffs against Philadelphia schools in some classes, and against Pittsburgh schools in others.

Sports[edit]

The PIAA sponsors 16 boys' sports and 16 girls' sports. However, the PIAA only sponsors state championships for 12 boys' sports and 11 girls' sports. The following is a list of PIAA sponsored sports championships.

There are Pennsylvania schools that offer sports not fully sponsored by the PIAA such as gymnastics, ice hockey, bowling, rifle, water polo and other Olympic sports. These sports are governed by other sport specific bodies that use similar PIAA rules for classification and eligibility, but are not officially recognized as state champions by the PIAA. The PIAA took over jurisdiction of both boys' and girls' lacrosse in July 2008.

School classifications[edit]

Every two years, the PIAA divides the member schools into either two, three, or four different classifications for each sport, depending on the number of male or female students enrolled in each school.

The number of statewide member schools participating in a particular sport will determine how many different classifications there will be. For example, boys' volleyball, the sport with the smallest number of participating schools, only has a AA or AAA classification. By comparison, boys' basketball, which has the largest number of participating schools, has A, AA, AAA and AAAA classifications. The number of A's signify how large or small the school is; Class A is the smallest classification while AAAA is the largest. The PIAA tries to place an equal number of schools in each classification.

Because the PIAA determines classifications separately for each sex in each sport, it is possible that a coeducational school may find its boys' and girls' teams in different classes in the same sport. Smaller schools can choose to compete at a higher classification—possible reasons are to maintain existing rivalries, or in rare cases to place their boys' and girls' teams in the same class—but larger schools can not choose to compete at a lower classification level. For purposes of all-star games and awards, the A and AA classes are referred to as "small schools", while AAA and AAAA are referred to as "big schools." In recent years, there has been a running debate over the possibility of splitting the football tournament into five or six classifications, instead of the current four. The PIAA made the decision to expand to six classes in Football, as well as Boys & Girls basketball, baseball and softball. Increasing to four classes is Boys & Girls Soccer, Girls volleyball. Field Hockey is expanded to three classes, and Boys & Girls Lacrosse to two. Football will use the classes starting with the 2016 season.[1]

Hershey, Pennsylvania[edit]

While some sports' championship games have been held at various venues and cities across the state, no city is more associated with the PIAA than Hershey. Hershey's proximity to Harrisburg, as well as easy highway access via the Pennsylvania Turnpike and Interstates 81 and 83 for teams from across the state makes it an ideal location for the games. Hersheypark Stadium hosts the football, soccer, and lacrosse championships; the Parkview Cross Country Course, located across the street from Hershey Park and Chocolate World, hosts the cross country championships.[2] The Giant Center hosts the basketball, wrestling,and competitive spirit championships. The Hershey Racquet Club hosts the tennis championships.

In 2006, the PIAA announced that they had refused Hershey's application for a contract extension to host the basketball championships at Giant Center. Starting for the 2006–2007 season, the eight championship games will be played at Penn State's Bryce Jordan Center. The PIAA cited monetary reasons for the move. As of 2014 they had returned to the Giant Center.

Even the non-PIAA sport of ice hockey hosted the 2005 Pennsylvania Cup championship at the historic Hersheypark Arena. The PIAA football championships have been contested since 1988, with the first games being held at various sites across the state. In 1992, the games were moved to Altoona's Mansion Park, in part because playing four games in two days would not affect the artificial turf playing surface on the field. The football championships were moved to Hershey in 1998 to add to the tradition of PIAA championship competition near the state capital.

State College hosts the baseball and softball championships at Pennsylvania State University.[3] Altoona previously hosted the baseball championships at Peoples Natural Gas Field, home of the Altoona Curve of the Class AA Eastern League. The track and field championships are contested at Seth Grove Stadium on the campus of Shippensburg University, 40 miles southwest of Harrisburg.

Championship sites[edit]

Fall[edit]

Sport Facility Location Gender(s) Classifications
Cross Country Parkview Cross Country Course Hershey Boys & Girls A, AA, AAA
Field Hockey Whitehall High School Whitehall Girls AA, AAA
Football Hersheypark Stadium Hershey Boys A, AA, AAA, AAAA
Golf Heritage Hills Golf Resort York Boys & Girls AA, AAA
Soccer Hersheypark Stadium Hershey Boys & Girls A, AA, AAA
Tennis Hershey Racquet Club Hershey Girls AA, AAA
Volleyball Richland Senior High School Richland Girls A, AA, AAA

Winter[edit]

Sport Facility Location Gender(s) Classifications
Basketball Giant Center Hershey Boys & Girls A, AA, AAA, AAAA
Competitive Spirit Giant Center Hershey Boys & Girls Small, Medium, Large, Coed
Swimming & Diving Kinney Natatorium Lewisburg Boys & Girls AA, AAA
Wrestling Giant Center Hershey Boys AA, AAA

Spring[edit]

Sport Facility Location Gender(s) Classifications
Baseball Medlar Field at Lubrano Park State College Boys A, AA, AAA, AAAA
Lacrosse Hersheypark Stadium Hershey Boys & Girls
Softball Nittany Lion Softball Park State College Girls A, AA, AAA, AAAA
Tennis Hershey Racquet Club Hershey Boys AA, AAA
Track & Field Seth Grove Stadium Shippensburg Boys & Girls AA, AAA
Volleyball Recreation Building State College Boys AA, AAA

Recent champions[edit]

Football[edit]

Class AAAA

  • 2015: Pittsburgh Central Catholic (District 7) over Parkland (District 11) 21-18
  • 2014: Saint Joseph's Prep (District 12) over Pine-Richland (District 7) 49-41
  • 2013: Saint Joseph's Prep (District 12) over Pittsburgh Central Catholic (District 7) 35-10
  • 2012: North Allegheny (District 7) over Coatesville (District 1) 63-28
  • 2011: Central Dauphin (District 3) over North Penn (District 1) 14-7
  • 2010: North Allegheny (District 7) over La Salle College (District 12) 21-0
  • 2009: La Salle College (District 12) over State College (District 6) 24-7
  • 2008: Liberty (District 11) over Bethel Park (District 7) 28-21 (OT)
  • 2007: Pittsburgh Central Catholic (District 7) over Parkland (District 11) 35-21
  • 2006: Upper St. Clair (District 7) over Liberty (District 11) 47-13
  • 2005: McKeesport (District 7) over Liberty (District 11) 49-10
  • 2004: Pittsburgh Central Catholic (District 7) over Neshaminy (District 1) 49-14
  • 2003: North Penn (District 1) over Pittsburgh Central Catholic (District 7) 37-10
  • 2002: Parkland (District 11) over Woodland Hills (District 7) 34-12
  • 2001: Neshaminy (District 1) over Woodland Hills (District 7) 21-7
  • 2000: Cathedral Prep (District 10) over Central Bucks West (District 1) 41-35 (OT)
  • 1999: Central Bucks West (District 1) over Cathedral Prep (District 10) 14-13
  • 1998: Central Bucks West (District 1) over New Castle (District 7) 56-7
  • 1997: Central Bucks West (District 1) over Upper St. Clair (District 7) 44-20

Class AAA

  • 2015: Imhotep Charter (District 12) over Cathedral Prep (District 10) 40-3
  • 2014: Archbishop Wood (District 12) over Central Valley (District 7) 33-14
  • 2013: Archbishop Wood (District 12) over Bishop McDevitt (District 3) 22-10
  • 2012: Cathedral Prep (District 10) over Archbishop Wood (District 12) 24-14
  • 2011: Archbishop Wood (District 12) over Bishop McDevitt (District 3) 52-0
  • 2010: Allentown Central Catholic (District 11) over Bishop McDevitt (District 3) 28-27
  • 2009: Selinsgrove (District 4) over Manheim Central (District 3) 10-7
  • 2008: Thomas Jefferson (District 7) over Archbishop Wood (District 12) 34-7
  • 2007: Thomas Jefferson (District 7) over Garnet Valley (District 1) 28-3
  • 2006: General McLane (District 10) over Pottsville (District 11) 28-23
  • 2005: Franklin Regional (District 7) over Pottsville (District 11) 23-13
  • 2004: Thomas Jefferson (District 7) over Manheim Central (District 3) 56-20
  • 2003: Manheim Central (District 3) over Pine-Richland (District 7) 39-38 (2OT)
  • 2002: Hopewell (District 7) over Strath Haven (District 1) 21-10
  • 2001: West Allegheny (District 7) over Strath Haven (District 1) 28-13
  • 2000: Strath Haven (District 1) over West Allegheny (District 7) 31-28
  • 1999: Strath Haven (District 1) over West Allegheny (District 7) 21-7
  • 1998: Allentown Central Catholic (District 11) over Moon (District 7) 10-0
  • 1997: Berwick (District 2) over Perry Traditional Academy (District 8) 17-14

Class AA

Class A

  • 2015: Bishop Guilfoyle (District 6) over Farrell (District 10) 35-0
  • 2014: Bishop Guilfoyle (District 6) over Clairton (District 7) 19-18
  • 2013: North Catholic (District 7) over Old Forge (District 2) 15-14 (OT)
  • 2012: Clairton (District 7) over Dunmore (District 2) 20-0
  • 2011: Clairton (District 7) over Southern Columbia (District 4) 35-19
  • 2010: Clairton (District 7) over Riverside (District 2) 36-30
  • 2009: Clairton (District 7) over Bishop McCort (District 6) 15-3
  • 2008: Steelton-Highspire (District 3) over Clairton (District 7) 35-16
  • 2007: Steelton-Highspire (District 3) over Serra Catholic (District 7) 34-15
  • 2006: Southern Columbia (District 4) over West Middlesex (District 10) 56-14
  • 2005: Southern Columbia (District 4) over Duquense (District 7) 50-19
  • 2004: Southern Columbia (District 4) over Rochester (District 7) 35-0
  • 2003: Southern Columbia (District 4) over Bishop Carroll (District 6) 49-20
  • 2002: Southern Columbia (District 4) over Rochester (District 7) 31-6
  • 2001: Rochester (District 7) over Southern Columbia (District 4) 16-0
  • 2000: Rochester (District 7) over Southern Columbia (District 4) 22-14
  • 1999: South Side (District 7) over Southern Columbia (District 4) 27-21
  • 1998: Rochester (District 7) over Southern Columbia (District 4) 18-0
  • 1997: Sharpsville (District 10) over Riverside (District 2) 10-7

Boys' Basketball[edit]

Class AAAA

  • 2016: Roman Catholic (District 12) over Taylor Allderdice (District 8) 73-62
  • 2015: Roman Catholic (District 12) over Martin Luther King (District 12) 62-45
  • 2014: New Castle (District 7) over LaSalle College (District 12) 52-39
  • 2013: Lower Merion (District 1) over Chester (District 1) 63-47
  • 2012: Chester (District 1) over Lower Merion (District 1) 59-33
  • 2011: Chester (District 1) over Mount Lebanon (District 7) 72-60 (OT)
  • 2010: Plymouth-Whitemarsh (District 1) over Penn Wood (District 1) 58-51
  • 2009: Penn Wood (District 1) over William Penn (District 12) 72-53
  • 2008: Chester (District 1) over Norristown (District 1) 81-77
  • 2007: Schenley (District 8) over Chester (District 1) 78-71
  • 2006: Lower Merion (District 1) over Schenley (District 8) 60-58
  • 2005: Chester (District 1) over Lower Merion (District 1) 74-61
  • 2004: Penn Hills (District 7) over Parkland (District 11) 57-48
  • 2003: State College (District 6) over Chester (District 1) 76-71
  • 2002: Harrisburg (District 3) over Uniontown (District 7) 69-62
  • 2001: Coatesville (District 1) over Schenley (District 8) 70-57
  • 2000: Chester (District 1) over Uniontown (District 7) 73-48

Class AAA

Class AA

Class A

  • 2016: Kennedy Catholic (District 10) over MCS Charter (District 12) 71-60
  • 2015: Constitution (District 12) over Farrell (District 10) 85-53
  • 2014: Lincoln Park Charter (District 7) over MCS Charter (District 12) 70-66
  • 2013: Vaux (District 12) over Johnsonburg (District 9) 83-63
  • 2012: Constitution (District 12) over Lincoln Park Charter (District 7) 68-46
  • 2011: MCS Charter (District 12) over Lincoln Park Charter (District 7) 70-55
  • 2010: Sewickley Academy (District 7) over Reading Central Catholic (District 3) 43-35
  • 2009: Girard College (District 12) over Kennedy Catholic (District 10) 80-70
  • 2008: Serra Catholic (District 7) over Friere Charter (District 12) 67-66
  • 2007: Reading Central Catholic (District 3) over DuBois Central Catholic (District 9) 58-33
  • 2006: Elk County Catholic (District 9) over Bishop Hannan (District 2) 71-61
  • 2005: Bishop O'Reilly (District 2) over Kennedy Catholic (District 10) 65-61
  • 2004: Bishop O'Reilly (District 2) over Sewickley Academy (District 7) 70-54
  • 2003: Scotland School (District 3) over Union Area (District 7) 80-59
  • 2002: Scotland School (District 3) over Kennedy Catholic (District 10) 69-50
  • 2001: Kennedy Christian (District 10) over Fairfield (District 3) 87-45
  • 2000: Kennedy Christian (District 10) over Bishop Hannan (District 2) 64-57 (OT)

Girls' Basketball[edit]

Class AAAA

Class AAA

Class AA

  • 2016: Neumann-Goretti (District 12) over North Star (District 5) 65-28
  • 2015: Neumann-Goretti (District 12) over Seton-La Salle (District 7) 79-34
  • 2014: Seton-La Salle (District 7) over Neumann-Goretti (District 12) 58-50
  • 2013: Bishop Canevin (District 7) over York Catholic (District 3) 45-38
  • 2012: Seton-La Salle (District 7) over York Catholic (District 3) 71-47
  • 2011: Villa Maria (District 10) over Dunmore (District 2) 62-39

Class A

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]