150 state championships!
Bishop England High School had its typical haul of state championship trophies as the High School League held its Weekend of Champions. The Bishops were crowned champs in boys’ tennis, girls’ track and field and girls’ soccer.
That helped the Bishops reach a milestone as they stand alone on top of the Palmetto State’s high school athletic mountian. The Bishops now have 150 state championships, far and away the most in the High School League history.
“Back in the day, you would talk about the big schools like Summerville when it came to who had the most state championships,” said BE athletic director Paul Runey, who has coached numerous sports at the school when it was located on Calhoun Street and Daniel Island, the school’s home since the 1998-99 academic year. “But now it’s Bishop England – that’s a lot of state championships. I don’t think any school is even close.”
The Bishops had some success when the school was located on the Charleston peninsula with the volleyball team owning nine state titles while the boys’ and girls’ tennis teams combined for 16 state crowns. But then came the move. The Bishops’ first academic year on Daniel Island was 1998-99 and the trophy cases at the new school are bulging two decades later. The Bishops have won 116 state titles since the school relocated.
The 40-acre BE campus has baseball and softball diamonds. Jack Cantey Stadium is home to the football team, the lacrosse teams and the soccer teams. The volleyball and basketball teams have a place to call their own while the tennis team recently had a new five-court facility installed on campus. The campus also hosts numerous track and field meets.
It wasn’t always that way. Runey described the school as sports “gypsies” moving from one location to another to practice when the school was located on Calhoun Street. Now, there’s no place like home.
The Bishops could add two more state titles by the end of the academic year. The golf team was scheduled to play in the Class AAA state match Monday and Tuesday (after the paper went to print). The Bishops are defending state champs.
The baseball team is seeking its third straight state title and owned a 1-0 advantage against Crescent after rallying in the top of the seventh inning for a 3-2 victory in Game 1 of the best-of-three series. Game 3, if necessary, will be played at a neutral site on Friday.
The series moved to Father Kelly Field for Game 2 on Tuesday, and the Bishops were scheduled to go with the ace of their pitching staff: Geoffrey Gilbert. He hasn’t lost a game in two years.
Gilbert is one of two Bishops to earn all-state honors from the state’s baseball coaches association. The other is Chris Dengler.
Gilbert entered the Crescent game with a 7-0 record and an ERA of 0.36. He struck out 97 batters in 58 innings.