Solon City Schools’ sports teams join the Suburban League for the 2023-2024 school year

The Solon High School Marching Band and Starlettes in 2021.

Hannah Levenson

The Solon High School Marching Band and Starlettes in 2021.

Hannah Levenson, Editor-in-Chief

Solon City Schools are expecting two changes in sports competition for next school year. Solon will be leaving the Greater Cleveland Conference (GCC) and the football team is being moved down to Division II.

Solon will be joining the Suburban League following their departure from the GCC. Current member schools of the Suburban League include Aurora, Barberton, Brecksville-Broadview Heights, Copley, Cuyahoga Falls, Highland, Hudson, Kent Roosevelt, Nordonia, North Royalton, Revere, Stow-Munroe Falls, Tallmadge, Twinsburg and Wadsworth.

According to Solon School’s athletic director, James McQuaide, Solon had previously applied for Suburban League membership but was formally asked to join last May. McQuaide believes that the Suburban League conference is a better fit for Solon.

“[Suburban league has] more schools the size that [Solon is],” McQuaide said. “Compared to the Greater Cleveland Conference, [Solon is] the smallest school, enrollment-wise. So now we will be more aligned with schools in the Suburban conference.”

McQuaide also believes that the change of leagues will be beneficial for athletes and the marching band. With some of Solon’s competitors being further away, the students sometimes do not get back home until past midnight.

Solon High School volleyball varsity captain, Ava Kanj, agrees with McQuaide. Kanj believes that the change in who Solon competes against is more beneficial to the well-being of student athletes.

“A lot of the schools, besides Wadsworth, are closer,” Kanj said. “On days when [the volleyball team] have away games, we are hopefully not getting home as late. A lot of times, we will get home at nine or ten o’clock. We still have to shower and do homework, which can be a lot.”

Besides the conference change, Solon Football teams will be moving down to Division II due to declining enrollment in Solon schools, and as a result of the Ohio High School Athletic Association competitive balance rules. The decision on divisions is made every two years, and McQuaide expects Solon to stay in Division II for more years to come. Solon will still be playing the same football teams during the regular season, however, Solon will be in a different region when it comes to the playoffs.

Varsity football player, Brian McQuaide, who is the son of James McQuaide, is looking forward to new competitive opportunities. Brian McQuaide stated that while athletes are aware of the upcoming changes, he would like to focus on the present football season. Brian McQuaide expressed that he believes that neither the division change or league change, will affect the spirit of the athletes.

“Competition-wise, I feel like [the difficulty is] still the same,” Brian McQuaide said. “I feel like our football team plays a hell of a competition. I don’t really care who we play, as long as we get to play.”