‘A new adventure’: Canyon View High sports return to 3A classification

CEDAR CITY — Canyon View High School sports will have an entirely new look this year, as the Falcons are dropping back to the 3A classification.

A Canyon View golfer putts on the 18th hole during Region 12 match at Cedar Ridge Golf Course, Cedar City, Utah, Aug. 4, 2021 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

The adjustment, which was part of the latest statewide biennial realignment enacted by the Utah High School Activities Association, means that Canyon View will no longer be part of 4A’s Region 9, as they have been for the past four years. Instead, the Falcons will now compete in the 3A South division for football, and in Region 12 for all other sports.

Meanwhile, the six Washington County 4A schools (Dixie, Desert Hills, Snow Canyon, Pine View, Crimson Cliffs and Hurricane) plus Cedar High will stay together in the same region, with the new seven-school grouping now being known as Region 10. 

Cedar City News recently spoke with Mike Hudson, who is Canyon View’s new activities director after teaching and coaching at the school for the past several years. Hudson succeeds Kyle Robinson, who has returned to his former AD position at Timpanogos High in Orem.

“I’ve been teaching here for six or seven years, and then this opportunity opened up,” Hudson said Wednesday. “It was kind of a hard decision, because I wasn’t exactly ready to give up coaching. That’s my passion. But this is a great opportunity, and Canyon View’s a great place, so I just hope I can continue to grow with Canyon View and help make it a better place.”

Mike Hudson, the new activities director at Canyon View High School, Cedar City, Utah, Aug. 4, 2021 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

Hudson noted that for fall sports, all but one of CVHS’s athletic programs will have the same head coach as last year, with the exception being volleyball, which is being led by newcomer Tim Eyre.

“There’s not much transition, so that consistency is going to be huge for our programs,” he said.

The first athletic contest of Canyon View’s new school year took place Wednesday, when the Falcons hosted a Region 12 golf match at Cedar Ridge Golf Course. The five participating teams were, in order of finish at the match: Richfield (324), Carbon (329), Emery (356), Canyon View (372) and Grand (389). Those five schools comprise the new Region 12 for all sports other than football. Region 12 is one of four regions in the 3A classification, which includes a total of 22 schools.

Football is a different story. Canyon View will be in the 3A South division for football, which also includes Carbon, Juab, Manti, North Sanpete and Richfield. Manti and North Sanpete are in 3A’s Region 14 for all other sports, while in football, Grand and Emery will both compete at the 2A level. 

“In 3A South football, there’s obviously some powerhouses,” Hudson said, singling out Juab, the reigning 3A state champions. “Juab did some amazing things last year. So just because we’re 3A doesn’t mean we’re going to dominate that region. There’s some good competition there, and we’re excited about that.” 

Perhaps exemplifying the ambitious youth and strength filling the ranks of Canyon View’s growing football program, incoming freshman Guyson Cheek, 14, deadlifted an incredible 405 pounds in the weight room on at least two separate occasions during recent practices, as seen at the end of the video above. 

Canyon View’s football team will open its season on the road Aug. 13 against Ogden. The Falcons’ first home game will be Aug. 27 against in-town rival Cedar.

Canyon View girls soccer team in action against Payson, Payson, Utah, Aug. 6, 2021 | Photo courtesy of Steven Newman, St. George News / Cedar City News

The CVHS girls soccer team has kicked off its schedule by playing three away games this week, defeating Juab 2-0 on Thursday but losing to Payson 3-0 Friday morning. Canyon View then defeated Uintah 5-0 on Saturday morning at Salem Hills. The Falcons will then have two more non-region games on the road next week: at Dixie on Aug. 11 and at Cedar on Aug. 13. The Falcons will then face Juab for their home opener on Aug. 17.

Meanwhile, the volleyball team’s season opener is Aug. 12 at Enterprise at 7:30 p.m. The Falcons will then co-host an invitational tournament with Cedar High on Aug. 21.

The Canyon View cross-country teams will start off their season at Cedar High, which is hosting the All Comers Invitational on Aug. 18 at 6 p.m.

Canyon View’s girls tennis team will start its season off by playing in a varsity tournament at Pine View the afternoon of Aug. 17, head coach David Fuller said.

Freshman football player Guyson Cheek after successfully deadlifting 405 pounds in the Canyon View High School weight room, Cedar City, Utah, June 21, 2021 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

Other activities that have already seen practices getting in full swing include marching band, cheerleading and drill.

Hudson said that when the UHSAA made its latest realignment and Canyon View was assigned to return to 3A, school officials opted not to petition to remain 4A and continue to be in the same region as Cedar and the St. George area schools.

“Based on our student population, we felt that (going to 3A) was probably what was best for our students,” Hudson said.

Hudson said that even though the Falcons will end up making longer road trips for region games, they’ll still be playing Cedar High and other former Region 9 opponents regularly.

“We are traveling further for region, but our non-region games are closer because those St. George schools still want to play us. Our non-region travel is a lot shorter than it used to be, so there’s a bit of balance there.” 

Hudson said he hopes Canyon View parents, students and fans will join in his excitement about the upcoming year.

“3A is a new adventure. I think everybody likes adventures,” he said. 

“It’s not completely new. We feel like we have an idea of what to expect, from having kind of been in this before. But there was no RPI before,” he added, referring to UHSAA’s rating percentage index system that’s been used since 2019 to assign the rankings that are used for state playoff seedings.

“We’re not going in blind, but it’s still a brand new adventure for us. So I think that has the curiosity level up and the excitement level up, not just for Canyon View but for the whole community.”

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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