High School Sports

Top Stories of 2010, No. 9: Mission Prep moves to the Southern Section

Lengthy playoff runs in multiple sports were practically a given for Mission Prep in the CIF-Central Section.

The Royals now are just looking to get into the postseason in the vastly larger, more competitive Southern Section, into which they transitioned this past year.

During the move, Mission Prep remained independent in all sports.

At the time, the Royals applied to gain entry into the Los Padres League — a natural fit competitively and geographically — in all sports except football. The LPL, though, decided to only take the Royals if they also came on board in football, something the school held off on because of concerns over roster depth, player safety and fatigue.

The lack of a full slate of LPL games didn’t prevent Mission Prep from testing itself against that level of competition in football, though.

In their fourth game of the season this year, the Royals lost 27-0 at Santa Maria, after which head coach Brady Lock resigned. Former Cal Poly quarterback Chad Henry took over as head coach on an interim basis and later led the Royals to a landmark 21-7 win over Nipomo. Henry was named the permanent coach earlier this month.

Mission Prep has again expressed interest in joining the LPL, this time in all sports, after its girls volleyball team was left out of the Southern Section playoffs.

Although the girls volleyball team went 22-11 and was ranked No. 10 in Division 3AA, it was omitted from the 33-team divisional bracket because the Royals didn’t meet the Southern Section’s requirement for an independent team to be guaranteed an at-large playoff spot — winning 80 percent of its matches.

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