By Ray Hamill — The St. Bernard’s Crusaders are back where they feel they belong, at least when it comes to North Coast Section football.
On Monday, the school won an appeal with the section to be included in Division VI instead of Division V for the new-look NCS playoffs.
Earlier this year the NCS voted for a new playoff system featuring seven eight-team brackets, with the new divisions based on school size and competitive equity over the past three seasons.
St. Bernard’s was originally placed in Division V along with several larger schools, including Eureka.
The Crusaders appealed the decision, and after the school presented its case the appeals committee agreed, switching them to Division VI on Monday.
“It’s where we belong,” St. Bernard’s head coach Matt Tomlin said. “They really did get it right, the appeals committee.”
The Crusaders’ three Big 4 rivals, Eureka, Fortuna and Del Norte, are all included in the new Division V, which features multiple schools of more than 1,000 students.
St. Bernard’s will join Arcata in Division VI.