PAC-10 High School Wrestling District 1

Pope John Paul II admitted into Pioneer Athletic Conference

by Don Seeley, Pottstown Mercury Sports Editor

Posted on May 21, 2009

LOWER POTTSGROVE - Pope John Paul II High School, which will open its doors to current St. Pius X and Kennedy-Kenrick high schools in September of 2010, was officially accepted into the Pioneer Athletic Conference on Wednesday.

Principals and athletic directors from the PAC-10 met with the Rev. Alan J. Okon Jr. - president of the new school - during a meeting at Pottsgrove High School's administration building.

According to several sources, the vote was 8-2 in favor of admitting Pope John Paul to the PAC-10.

The merger of St. Pius X and Kennedy-Kenrick, announced last year, meant the new school had to apply for membership in the Pioneer Athletic Confererence.

Officials from Pope John Paul officially applied for membership this past winter and the application was presented to the principals in March.

"Because (Pope John Paul II) is a new school, (it) had to apply to the league," said Pat Nugent, the principal at Spring-Ford High School and president of the PAC-10. "They followed the procedure according to our (league's) by-laws."

Nugent was happy the league was able to remain a 10-school alignment, too.

"It was important to maintain our 10-team league," he said.

A number of athletic directors agreed with that aspect. Though no one spoke on the record, they agreed retaining a 10-school alignment was important from a scheduling standpoint, especially with no other school or schools officially inquiring about membership in the league.

Nugent was also happy with the presentations made by Pope John Paul II representatives, which included current St. Pius X athletic director Madison Morton

"I don't see any negatives with this," Nugent said. "I think the one thing we'll all appreciate is the improvement in facilities. Everyone is seeing the building (just off Township Line Road in Upper Providence Township), and the nice thing is that the new facility should be able to hold most athletic events on one site.

"I'm sure there will be an exception here and there, especially at first because of the construction. But compared to what Pius has had (sharing fields at various sites), being able to hold most if not all events on campus will certainly be an upgrade in that sense."

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