So long, 2A state playoffs.
With the completion of Saturday’s state track and field championships, Polk County’s time competing in 2A postseason events has come to an end, at least for the next two seasons.
When the 2023-24 athletic season begins in August, Polk County will remain a member of the Mountain Foothills 7 Conference. But once postseason play arrives, Wolverine teams will take part in state 1A playoffs, thanks to a mid-realignment appeal approved earlier this year.
As the only 1A team in the Mountain Foothills 7, Polk County will advance to postseason play based on the following criteria, per officials from the North Carolina High School Athletic Association:
- In any sport except wrestling, a Polk County team will receive an automatic playoff berth and be seeded as a conference champion if they finish in the top two of the conference.
- A Polk County team can also earn an automatic berth and be seeded as a conference champion if they finish with a winning percentage of .500 or better.
- In wrestling, Polk County would need to win the MF7 in order to earn an automatic berth to the state dual team playoffs
- If a Wolverine team doesn’t earn an automatic berth, then the team could receive an at-large berth based on RPI, just as is the case for all other schools.
Polk County competed for the past two postseasons at the 2A level. The Wolverines had perhaps their greatest success in track and field, winning three individual state titles at the 2022 outdoor meet, and boys golf, with Polk taking fifth place at the 2022 state tourney and fourth in 2023.
The Wolverine volleyball squad reached the third round of the 2022 playoffs and the second round in 2021. Polk’s girls soccer team also moved into the second round of the 2023 playoffs, as did the Wolverine football team in 2022.
Polk’s Jaydn Virgil earned sixth place earlier this year in the state 2A wrestling tournament.
As of now, the NCHSAA is scheduled to next realign schools into new conferences and classifications for the 2025-26 season. Member schools recently approved a bylaw change to limit classifications to 64 schools, which would create seven classes in the next realignment.