The days of the four Lincoln County Schools high school teams being in the same conference for athletics is over. It lasted all of four years.
Prior to 2017, North Lincoln was in a 3A/4A conference with six Iredell County teams and Alexander Central. Their closest conference opponents geographically were Mooresville and Lake Norman. They also played North, West and South Iredell and Statesville. Some of the teams were 4A, and thanks to travel time, attendance at home games suffered terribly.
The new conference realignment, which will now be effective for the next four years, puts North back in 3A--but this time, they're joined by East Lincoln, also changed to 3A in a new conference that will be known as the Western Foothills Conference. Three Iredell County schools will be in the new conference: Statesville, North Iredell and West Iredell; but three Catawba County opponents will make travel times to away games (and for those schools' fans to come to Lincoln County) much easier. Hickory, St. Stephens and Fred T. Foard will be in the Western Foothills league.
Some had hoped that with Lincoln Charter being changed from 1A to 2A, the Eagles might be in a league with other Lincoln County teams; but Lincoln Charter will be in a 2A/1A league known as the Catawba Shores Conference. They, Community School of Davidson, and Pine Lake Prep from Mooresville, will be the 2A members. 1A members will include Mountain Island Charter, Langtree Charter from Mooresville and Christ the King Catholic School from Huntersville.
Lincolnton, West Lincoln, Maiden, Bandys & Newton-Conover from the old South Fork Conference will be joined by Bunker Hill, East Burke and West Caldwell in the new Catawba Valley 2A Conference.
Cherryville will still be in the Southern Piedmont Conference, but that will now be a 2A/1A league. Other 1A members will be Bessemer City, Highland Tech and Thomas Jefferson. The 2A members will be Burns, Shelby and East Gaston.
The other Gaston & Cleveland County teams will be in the new Big South 3A Conference. Crest & Kings Mtn. from Cleveland County will be joined by Ashbrook, Forestview, Hunter Huss, North Gaston, South Point & Stuart Cramer in that league.