By Staff Writer Hannah Chou
Multiple MSJ sports teams received the North Coast Section (NCS) Scholastic Championship Team Award for the 2016-17 fall and winter sports season, an award that is presented to the top three varsity sports teams in each division with the highest unweighted GPA. Among the seven winning sports teams, Girls’ and Boys’ Soccer received first place with GPAs of 3.80 along with Girls’ and Boys’ Wrestling, which had GPAs of 3.53 and 3.51, respectively. Girls’ Volleyball was ranked second with a GPA of 3.65, and Girls’ Tennis was placed third with a GPA of 3.72.
NCS requirements state that teams must reach the minimum number of participants, which varies for each sport, in order to be able to qualify for the award. Once teams are eligible, they can choose to apply for the award through the NCS website before each season’s designated deadline. NCS will notify each school’s Director of Athletics later in the year if a team received the Scholastic Award. The award is considered the highest accomplishment school sports teams can attain in terms of academics, and teams that win receive a certificate and pennant for their achievement.
The 2016-17 school year marks the 18th year MSJ has received the award. Girls’ Tennis received the first NCS Scholastic award in 1992, and since 2003, at least one MSJ sports team has been presented the award. However, with more than 176 schools in NCS, receiving the award requires an immense amount of effort and dedication from student-athletes. Members of high school sports teams need to be able to fully commit to their respective sports during their season as well as be able to balance the academic and extracurricular pressures they encounter. Members of the winning sports teams, such as Girls’ Volleyball Co-Captain Senior Aileen Hsu, believe that maintaining a sense of urgency is the key to creating that lasting balance. “It definitely wasn’t easy,” Hsu said. “The key was to maximize the opportunities to work and have a sense of urgency to do what needed to be done, and that sense of urgency came from our passion for the sport and our desire to perform well in both academics and athletics.”
Graphic by North Coast Section