Galena and Carson rank high |

Galena and Carson rank high

The race is on to be recognized as Nevada’s top overall 4A athletic program and if the fall is any indication it’s shaping up as battle between three schools who are accustomed to being at the top of the standings: Galena, Reno High and Carson.

After the completion of the fall sports season, Galena, Reno and Carson are the top three teams in the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association’s Award of Excellence program.

In the program, schools are judged in three areas: athletic competition, academics and citizenship. The citizenship component is added to the final score at the completion of the spring sports season.

After the fall sports season, Galena, which is the defending champion, is in first with 1,090 points. Reno is in second at 1,030 and Carson, the 2002 champion, is in third at 970. Palo Verde is fourth at 790.

“I like to hear that,” said Galena athletic director Teresa Burrows about her school leading the standings. “We’re trying.

“It’s just things we express, the sportsmanship, the academics. It’s just our way of life. We’re all about the academics first and foremost.”

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Once again, Carson is high in the standings due in large part to its strong performance in academics. After the fall sports season, Carson scored 690 points in academics, more than any other 4A school.

Carson won two more state academic titles this past fall in girls cross country and boys soccer, which means those teams had the highest grade point average of any 4A school in their respective sport in the state. Carson has won more state academic titles than any other 4A school.

The Senators also performed well in competition, having one of their most successful fall sports seasons in recent memory. The boys cross country team took third in the state while the girls cross country and girls golf teams were third in the Northern 4A Championships.

The boys soccer team advanced to the Northern 4A finals and the boys and girls soccer teams won the Sierra League titles. The boys tennis team advanced to the Northern 4A semifinals and the football, girls tennis and volleyball teams all advanced to the zone playoffs.

“They made me look good,” said first-year Carson athletic director Diane Baker Roberts. “We did real well.

“But academics are more important than athletics. We try to stress that to our student-athletes.”

Galena continued its usual success in competition as its football team made it to the NIAA 4A State Championship Game. The Grizzlies also won zone titles in girls golf and boys tennis and finished as the zone runner-up in girls tennis and girls soccer.

For more information on the Award of Excellence program go to


Juliana Paoli, a 1996 Carson High graduate, continues to move up the ranks in professional sports management as she’s now serving as the director of corporate and public affairs for the Class A franchise, the San Jose Giants.

In 2005, Paoli served as the Golden Baseball League’s San Diego Surf Dawgs general manager. During her year as GM, the Surf Dawgs won the inaugural GBL title. During that season, Paoli also worked with Ricky Henderson, who played with the Surf Dawgs.


The Sierra Nevada Media Group conducts weekly rankings for Northern Nevada high school sports, inviting various media throughout Northern Nevada to vote. Those who pay close attention to the rankings may notice in today’s sports section a strang ranking in girls basketball in which Carson is ranked No. 2 ahead of No. 3 Reed even though the Raiders beat the Senators 87-50 to begin the season.

While I could make a bunch of excuses for why this happened, I have to point the finger at myself as I have failed to vote so far in the poll. Had I voted this week, my vote may have been enough to make Reed No. 2 and Carson No. 3.


The proposal for realignment to take effect in the fall of 2008 which a committee came up with this fall was met with a great deal of resistence, so it’s not surprising that changes have been made.

Originally it was proposed that Wooster and Hug drop from 4A to 3A, with the option to still compete in certain sports at 4A. Both of those proposals are now dead.

The committee came back with a recent proposal that keeps Wooster and Hug in the 4A. It also rescinded an endorsement of a sport-by-sport concept in which schools could petition to move up or down a classification in a certain sport.

NIAA assistant director Donnie Nelson told’s Chuck Hildebrand that the sport-by-sport concept is now a “non-issue.”

A final proposal, which will almost assuredly keep Wooster and Hug at 4A while dropping Fallon, South Tahoe and Elko to 3A, should more than likely be passed by the NIAA board this spring.