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Opinion

LEWIS: Montgomery County Remembers: Sectional Titles

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I know Jared’s column last week stole a little of my thunder talking about what a great fall season Southmont and Montgomery County enjoyed, but I thought we could dive into the historical aspect as to just how special this season has been.

With the help of my oldest daughter (who does all these neat excel graphs) we put together a spreadsheet of every sectional title won by the three county schools since consolidation. I know this short-changes Crawfordsville since they have been winning sectionals since the early 1900s, but in order to keep the charts somewhat manageable we went back 49 years to the start of North Montgomery and Southmont. Even with that, the charts are quite large with each school for the past 49 years and the 20 different sports.

We were able to break it down school-by-school and then we added them all together to see what years the county has enjoyed the most success.

As most of you already know, Southmont won four sectional titles in the fall (girls’ soccer, girls’ golf and volleyball and boys’ tennis).

Looking back through the records it appears this is the first time that any one school has won four sectional titles in the fall season. Actually, it’s the first time that a single school has won four sectional titles in any one athletic season since consolidation.

Taking a closer look, Southmont had only won 14 total sectional titles in fall sports until this year and they added four more. The Mounties had enjoyed a fall season where it won three titles in the fall of 1984 when it won boys’ tennis, volleyball and girls’ cross country. Southmont recently ended a 24-year drought (1993-2017) where none of the seven fall sports won a single sectional title. That was snapped when the girls’ soccer team won the first of its three consecutive titles in 2017.

Southmont has a total of 18 fall sport sectional titles. Volleyball leads the way with six, boys’ tennis has four, girls’ soccer three and boys’ and girls’ cross country with two each and girls golf one.

North Montgomery’s best fall season came in 2008 when it won the football and volleyball sectional titles. Overall, North Montgomery has won 27 sectional titles in the six fall sports — all coming in just three sports. Volleyball leads the way with 20 titles, followed by boys’ tennis with four and football with three.

Crawfordsville, like North Montgomery, has never won more than two fall sport sectional titles in the same year. It accomplished that in 1983 (football and boys’ tennis), 1995, 1996 and 2007 (boys tennis and volleyball), 2010, 2012 and 2014 (boys’ soccer and boys’ tennis), 2017 (boys’ cross country and boys’ tennis). Overall, Crawfordsville has won 45 fall sport titles since 1971-72. Boys’ team leads the way with 30, boys’ soccer has seven titles, while volleyball has five, followed by football (2) and boys’ cross country (1).

The 30 titles by the Crawfordsville tennis team is easily the leader for all sports in the county since consolidation. Next in line is Crawfordsville boys’ and girls’ swimming as each has recorded 23 titles and Crawfordsville girls’ tennis has 22. No other sport has won 20 sectional titles.

Taking a look at the other seasons, Crawfordsville posted sectional titles in boys’ golf, girls’ tennis and boys’ track in spring of 1989. North Montgomery won three titles in the winter season of 1975-76 by winning girls’ basketball, girls’ swimming and wrestling. The Chargers matched that feat in back-to-back years in the winter of 2005-06 and 2006-07 when it won both boys’ and girls’ basketball titles and wrestling.

So what are the most sectional titles by a single school in one school year?

That mark goes to Crawfordsville in the 1988-89 school year. The Athenians won six that year. The year started off with a boys’ tennis sectional title in the fall and was followed by titles in boys’ basketball, girls’ swimming, boys’ golf, girls’ tennis and boys’ track.

North Montgomery’s best school year was in 1975-76 when it won five titles — volleyball, girls’ basketball, girls’ swimming, wrestling, girls’ track.

Southmont’s best year was in 1985-86 when it won five titles — girls’ cross country, volleyball, girls’ basketball, baseball and girls’ track.

Overall, the county teams have combined to win 305 sectional titles since North Montgomery and Southmont opened its doors in the fall of 1971.

And in case you are wondering what year has the county combined for the most titles in a single school year, that would be 2008-09 when the three schools combined for nine titles. With four titles in the books this could be a record-setting year for the county. At least let’s hope so.

Barry Lewis has been playing or covering sports in Montgomery County for more than 40 years and enjoys helping to keep our sports heritage alive with his bi-weekly column for the Journal Review.

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