Rivals athletic director recaps first full year of sports merger with Chimacum

Posted 6/30/22

Following the first full year of Chimacum and Port Townsend high schools combining their sports programs into the East Jefferson Rivals, officials with the Port Townsend School District recapped the …

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Rivals athletic director recaps first full year of sports merger with Chimacum

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Following the first full year of Chimacum and Port Townsend high schools combining their sports programs into the East Jefferson Rivals, officials with the Port Townsend School District recapped the successes and challenges of the program after a full year of sports.

Philip Mackey-Moseley, the Rivals athletic director and also the dean of students for Port Townsend High, summarized the first year with a list of triumphs and challenges encountered during the inaugural year of the combined program.

Mackey-Moseley outlined the hits and misses of the combined program to the Port Townsend School District Board of Directors during the school board meeting earlier this month.

Mackey-Moseley listed several successes after one year, including a rebranded athletics program with new Rivals colors and logos through student and community collaboration; new uniforms for all 23 sports for the upcoming school year; the provision of nine sports each for boys and girls; a combined 127 participants in high school athletics this year among Port Townsend High students; the hiring of a new athletic director to cover all East Jefferson sports next year; and 50 percent participation between boys and girls for sports hosted by Port Townsend High.

New Rivals Athletic Director Shelby Box will take over the role next year. She was was hired to take on the position by the school board in April.

Additionally, Mackey-Moseley noted the athletic success of many teams, with three school-sponsored teams making the Nisqually League playoffs, four teams making it to the district playoffs, and seven teams making it to State.

The outgoing athletic director listed transportation, COVID-related difficulties, and low participation for some sports as the key challenges observed by the school district in the opening year for the combined Chimacum-Port Townsend program.

“Fast-pitch was the one sport that we struggled with; we had four girls who were interested. Our golf numbers were low, we had just enough boys to make the team but we didn’t have enough girls to make a team,” Mackey-Moseley said during the meeting.

“But on the flip-side, we’ve been very successful,” he added. “We had more girls turn out for wrestling this year than ever — to the extent that we actually were able to promote one of our assistant coaches to the head girls wrestling coach [position], because we actually had a team.”

Referring to COVID-related issues, Mackey-Moseley said: “We’ve managed those logistics quite well.”

“Post that mid-winter COVID surge, we’ve done much better,” he said.

Lastly, he reviewed fiscal considerations and notes for moving forward with the East Jefferson Rivals program.

On the fiscal side, the school district is set to meet in August to have a financial review of the athletic program, Superintendent Linda Rosenbury said in the meeting.

The biggest goals include resolving coaching salaries and how to attract new coaches when vacancies open; training and retaining coaches; working to have better coordination for supervising sporting events; and gauging interest and participation to determine which sports to offer for accommodating student interest and underrepresented genders.

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