Benson Schools dropping golf sports coop with KMS

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Gunnar Abner putts for the Benson-KMS boys team last season.  Starting in 2018, Benson will be going it alone in boys and girls golf.

To help it be more competitive in boys and girls golf by going up against schools more its size, the District 777 Board of Education agreed to ends its boys and girls golf cooperative agreement with Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg (KMS) schools.  The action took place at the school board’s March 20 meeting and will take place during the 2018 season.

Benson High School’s boys and girls golf, volleyball, and wrestling all participate in sports for which the Minnesota State High School League has three classes.

In wrestling, BHS is in Class A. In volleyball Benson is in Class AA. In boys and girls golf, the district is also in Class AA.

Every two years, the league resections the state based on new enrollment figures at schools and the new sections should be coming out pretty soon, Schmidt told the school board.

Based on the state’s formula Benson High School’s nine through 12th grade enrollment number is 210 students, Schmidt said.  

The actual enrollment is closer to 250 students, using this fall’s beginning enrollment figures of 77 students in 8th grade, 66 in 9th grade, 56 in 10th grade, and 53 in 11th, but that number is adjusted based on a variety of factors, including a percentage of students on free and reduced lunches within the school district in grades 9-12.

That 210-student figure is just for Benson’s enrollment, not in sports where it is paired with other schools, such as the Benson-KMS sports coops and the Morris-Benson Area boys and girls hockey programs.

What that new number also means for volleyball is that it is going to push BHS down into Class A. Benson volleyball has been in Class AA as long as she can remember, Schmidt said.   “I fully expect us to drop down to Class in volleyball.  I am most curious to see what section we get placed.  It’s going to be interesting,” she said.  The cutoff enrollment for Class AA is 235 students.

When Schmidt looks at the numbers for boys and girls golf, which does include pairing with KMS, the boys golf new enrollment number was in the 230s and girls golf number was around 216. If boys and girls golf was at 210, just like volleyball, that would lower the sports into Class A, she said....

 

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Pictured: Gunnar Abner putts for the Benson-KMS boys team last season.  Starting in 2018, Benson will be going it alone in boys and girls golf.
 

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