The Prep Zone Power Poll powered by Strive Fitness – 2018 Softball Poll #8

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Oakleaf (Orange Park) survives a scare in district play; Knights remain on top of regional rankings

GAINESVILLE – The top-ranked team in The Prep Zone Power Poll remains the same heading into FHSAA regional play, but it didn’t come easy.

Oakleaf (Orange Park) survived a scare in the 8A-District 2 semifinals, rallying for a 3-2 win in eight innings against Fleming Island (Orange Park).

They cruised in the district championship game with a 10-0 win against Atlantic Coast (Jacksonville).

The Knights (25-2) received all six first-place votes in the all-classification regional rankings. The defending state champions are currently on a 17-game winning streak.Oakleaf Knights

Oakleaf, which will host Lincoln (Tallahassee) in the Class 8A-Region 1 quarterfinals, is up to 11th nationally in the MaxPreps Xcellent 25 Writers’ Poll.

Bartram Trail (St. Johns), which won the Class 7A-District 4 title, is still second.

The Bears (24-2) handed Oakleaf one of its two losses this season. They will open up regional play at home against Columbia (Lake City), which tumbled five spots from third to eighth following a 3-1 loss to No. 4 Gainesville in the 7A-District 3 championship game.

That moved Trenton up one spot to third.

The Tigers (23-3), who are seeking their first fastpitch softball state title in school history, easily won the 1A-District 7 title, outscoring their two opponents by a combined 26-1. They are the top-ranked team in the Miracle Sports Class 1A state rankings.

GHS (20-5) got a no-hitter from JU commit Alissa Humphrey in the district semifinals in a 4-0 win against Vanguard (Ocala), followed by an 11-strikeout performance against Columbia in the district championship game. That enabled the ‘Canes to move up one spot to fourth.

They will open regional play at home against Nease (Ponte Vedra), which lost 2-1 in eight innings to Bartram Trail in the 7A-4 title game.

Rounding out the top five is Deltona.

The Wolves (21-2) moved up three spots from eighth following the 7A-District 5 title. They enter the postseason with a 12-game winning streak.

Class 8A-District 3 champion East Ridge (Clermont) is ranked sixth, followed by defending 5A state runner-up Eustis, Columbia, 5A-4 champ West Nassau (Callahan), and 6A-6 champion Springstead (Spring Hill) in the top 10.

Columbia is the only district runner-up in the top 10.

Class 4A #1 Providence (Jacksonville) tumbled 12 spots from seventh to 19th after getting upset in the 4A-District 2 semifinals. The Stallions (18-3) lost to Episcopal (Jacksonville), 6-5, and did not qualify for regional play.

Crystal River and Atlantic dropped out after a district runner-up finish in 6A-6 and 5A-8, respectively.

Spruce Creek (Port Orange) moves into the top 20 at No. 15. The Hawks (17-10) won the Class 9A-District 2 title by edging previous #6 University (Orange City), 6-5, in eight innings in the championship game. The Titans (20-5) dropped five spots to 11th.

This is the last ranking until after the FHSAA Softball Championships in Vero Beach (May 16-19).

The Prep Zone Power Poll ranks the top 20 high school football, basketball, baseball & softball teams (regardless of FHSAA classification) across 26 counties in North Florida (Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Citrus, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Duval, Flagler, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Hernando, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lake, Levy, Madison, Marion, Nassau, Putnam, Sumter, St. Johns, Suwannee, Taylor, Union & Volusia counties). It is voted on weekly by sportswriters and sportscasters and it is powered by Strive Fitness.

The Prep Zone Power Poll – 2018 Softball Poll #8
(School, followed by classification, first-place votes, record through 4/28, and total voting points)
1. Oakleaf (Orange Park) (8A) (6) (25-2) – 120
2. Bartram Trail (St. Johns) (7A) (24-2) – 114
3. Trenton (1A) (23-3) – 107
4. Gainesville (7A) (20-5) – 101
5. Deltona (7A) (21-2) – 92
6. East Ridge (Clermont) (8A) (25-2) – 88
7. Eustis (5A) (21-5) – 80
8. Columbia (Lake City) (7A) (21-4) – 77
9. West Nassau (Callahan) (5A) (20-6) – 70
10. Springstead (Spring Hill) (6A) (23-4) – 55
11T. University (Orange City) (9A) (20-5) – 51
11T. Hernando (Brooksville) (5A) (23-3) – 51
13. Mandarin (Jacksonville) (9A) (20-6) – 41
14. Union County (Lake Butler) (1A) (15-4) – 40
15. Spruce Creek (Port Orange) (9A) (17-10) – 38
16. Santa Fe (Alachua) (5A) (19-8) – 29
17. Taylor (Pierson) (5A) (18-4) – 27
18. Aucilla Christian (Monticello) (2A) (11-9) – 14
19. Providence (Jacksonville) (4A) (18-3) – 13
20. Keystone Heights (5A) (17-10) – 10
Also receiving votes: Crystal River (6A) (18-3) – 8; Atlantic (Port Orange) (5A) (15-5) – 6; Baker County (Glen St. Mary) (5A) (16-8) – 6; Ridgeview (Orange Park) (6A) (15-6) – 5; Montverde Academy (4A) (19-8) – 5; Madison County (1A) (14-7) – 4; Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) (4A) (16-10) – 3; Belleview (6A) (17-8) – 3; Lafayette (Mayo) (1A) (16-10) – 1.