The Magnet Tribune
LISD moving down to 4A -- goodbye 5AMonday, March 05, 2012 By Daisie Urdiales and Norma Guerra
Laredo Independent School District is now in the eight-team District 31-4A with Corpus Christi schools as competition for the next two years, according to the UIL's Jan. 26 realignment. “Four A will be easier to compete in, but it is loaded with talent,” said Daniel Gutierrez, head coach of Nixon girls’ track and field. LISD will be saying goodbye to United Independent School District’s four high schools. UISD is set to stay in the trimmed down seven-team District 29-5A. “The difference between 4A and 5A is the amount of students in the high school. It’s easier to drop students when you have 4,000 than 2,000 students,” Gutierrez said. The number of students in a school affects the overall chances of winning. “The more population you have on campus, the odds are you will do better,” Nixon football coach Tommy Ramirez told the Laredo Morning Times after the new alignments came out. Two years ago, Nixon and Cigarroa dropped to a 4A district and then decided to try their luck in the 5A district. Now LISD heads to where administrators hope to get a better chance at winning. “I know our athletes will be ready for the challenge. I’m very confident in our coaches’ abilities to prepare our athletes for the new alignment and the challenges ahead of us,” LISD athletic director Rene Ramirez told Laredo Morning Times. Nixon Principal Dr. Gerardo Cruz believes this would be a good move. “It would be good competition because it will be a bit tougher. Small towns focus more on extracurricular activities like band and sports, so it would be tougher. There would definitely be a lot more of traveling,” Cruz said. Students can’t wait to play against Corpus Christi schools. “The chances of winning are at a better ratio in 4A than in 5A. I can’t wait to play on the field against Corpus Christi schools. I think it’ll give us that extra push to strive for the best,” said Reiver Rodriguez, sophomore soccer player at Nixon High, said. Victor Gomez, freshman soccer player, from Cigarroa High, thinks 4A is going to be more physical. Another player agreed. “I think that they are going to put us to work more on our physical condition,” Samuel Gomez, freshman soccer player at Cigarroa High, said. Reynaldo Alvarez, junior soccer player, thinks the only thing that is going to change is the traveling. It seems like LISD would have a better chance at winning in 4A, but athletes and coaches will surely miss the 29-5A district. “Honestly, I didn’t want to move because in 5A there’s more competition; it challenges us. I wanted to spend my senior year in 5A, but they (LISD) know what is in our best interest,” Ashley Galvan, junior soccer player at Nixon High, said. Above all, Gutierrez will miss the rivalries. “I rather compete against local schools; it makes everything more exciting with rivalries,” Gutierrez said. However students are ready to compete against their new rivals. “We’ll be more than ready for our new rivals. We’ll be giving our all and be representing South Laredo,” Alvarez said. The downfall of returning to 4A is what he said is the intimidation factor of the Corpus Christi schools. “The appearances of the other athletes affect our athletes. We’re already losing because of the intimidation factor, even though we’re just as good as they are,” Gutierrez said. MT staff writer Kimberly Luna contributed to this story.