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The Prep Zone Power Poll powered by Anytime Fitness of Gainesville – 2024 Baseball Poll #5 (FINAL POLL)

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State champion St. Johns Country Day (Orange Park) finishes No. 1

GAINESVILLE – The St. Johns Country Day (Orange Park) Spartans had come so close to winning the FHSAA Class 2A state baseball title, losing two of the last three years in the state championship game.

But in 2024 the Spartans were back playing for the state title.

This time they took care of business, and in thrilling fashion.

SJCD (25-6) defeated North Florida Christian (Tallahassee), 8-6, on a walk off in the Region 1-2A final, then walked off against Northside Christian (St. Petersburg), 5-4, in the state semifinal game at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers.

Then just for fun, they walked off again for the state title, edging Miami Christian, 4-3, for their first baseball state title.

The championship earned the Spartans eight of the nine first-place votes to finish as the number one team in the final all-classification regional rankings for 2024.

St. Johns Country Day, who was ranked 2nd in the previous poll taking before the regional playoffs, passed Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) for the top spot in The Prep Zone Power Poll.

The Conquerors (24-7) were ranked number one most of the season, but dropped to 2nd after losing to Westminster Christian (Miami), 6-4, in the 3A state semifinals in Fort Myers.

Trinity Christian received the other first-place vote.

Class 6A state runner-up Buchholz (Gainesville) finished 3rd.

The Bobcats (24-9) earned their first state semifinal trip by beating New Smyrna Beach, Pace, and Hagerty (Oviedo) at home to win Region 1-6A.

Buchholz pounded Bloomingdale (Valrico), 12-0, in the state semifinals in Fort Myers, but allowed 14 hits and dropped the state title game, 10-3, to Dwyer (Palm Beach Gardens).

Finishing fourth is Bolles (Jacksonville).

The Bulldogs (21-8) lost in the Region 1-3A semifinal, 6-4, at Trinity Christian.

Rounding out the top five is 1A state semifinalist Lafayette (Mayo).

The Hornets (23-3) defeated Madison County, 1-0, and RV Union County (Lake Butler), 4-0, to advance to the 1A state semifinals. The Hornets were eliminated by eventual 1A state champion Jay, 4-2, in Fort Myers.

Spruce Creek (Port Orange) leads off the second five, followed by Creekside (St. Johns), Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville), Newberry, and Clay (Green Cove Springs) in the top 10.

Creekside was knocked off in a 7A region final, Newberry was upset at home by Trenton in the Region 4-1A final, and Clay was beaten by Lincoln (Tallahassee) in a 5A region final.

Spruce Creek and Bishop Kenny lost in the second round of the 7A and 4A playoffs, respectively.

Among the second 10 is No. 16 Columbia (Lake City) and No. 17T Trenton, which moves into the rankings for the first time this season.

Despite only finishing with a 13-12 record, Trenton won at Chiefland and Newberry to win Region 4-1A. The Tigers advanced to Fort Myers but were beaten by eventual state runner-up Bozeman (Panama City).

Bishop Snyder (Jacksonville), which was receiving votes previously, moved all the way to No. 11 after advancing to the Region 1-3A final, where they were eliminated, 8-6, by Trinity Christian.

Hernando (Brooksville), which lost at Merritt Island in the Region 2-4A Final, also moved into the rankings as the Leopards (19-10) are tied for 19th with Montverde Academy (14-10).

Dropping out from the previous poll were Forest (Ocala), Providence (Jacksonville), and Episcopal (Jacksonville).

The Prep Zone Power Poll ranks the top 20 high school football, girls basketball, boys basketball, softball & baseball 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 by sportswriters and sportscasters and it is powered by Anytime Fitness of Gainesville.

THE PREP ZONE POWER POLL – 2024 BASEBALL POLL #5 (FINAL POLL)
(School, followed by classification, first place votes, final 2024 record, and total voting points)
1. St. Johns Country Day (Orange Park) (2A) (8) (25-6) – 179
2. Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) (3A) (1) (24-7) – 170
3. Buchholz (Gainesville) (6A) (24-9) – 164
4. Bolles (Jacksonville) (3A) (21-8) – 139
5. Lafayette (Mayo) (1A) (23-3) – 128
6. Spruce Creek (Port Orange) (7A) (19-10) – 120
7. Creekside (St. Johns) (7A) (19-11) – 114
8. Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) (4A) (20-9) – 108
9. Newberry (1A) (22-6) – 105
10. Clay (Green Cove Springs) (5A) (18-10) – 87
11. Bishop Snyder (Jacksonville) (3A) (20-9) – 79
12. Nature Coast Tech (Brooksville) (4A) (19-7) – 71
13. St. Joseph’s Academy (St. Augustine) (2A) (20-9) – 61
14. Lake Minneola (Minneola) (6A) (21-6) – 47
15. Mount Dora Christian Academy (2A) (20-9) – 38
16. Columbia (Lake City) (5A) (15-13) – 33
17T. Tocoi Creek (St. Augustine) (6A) (18-8) – 30
17T. Trenton (1A) (13-12) – 30
19T. Hernando (Brooksville) (4A) (19-10) – 22
19T. Montverde Academy (3A) (14-10) – 22
Also receiving votes: Episcopal (Jacksonville) (3A) (19-9) – 20; Fleming Island (Orange Park) (6A) (18-11) – 18; University Christian (Jacksonville) (2A) (18-10) – 18; Forest (Ocala) (6A) (17-9) – 17; Keystone Heights (3A) (20-9) – 12; Umatilla (3A) (19-9) – 10; Bartram Trail (St. Johns) (6A) (16-12) – 9; Oakleaf (Orange Park) (6A) (17-10) – 8; Englewood (Jacksonville) (5A) (15-10) – 7; Beachside (St. Johns) (5A) (16-14) – 6; The Villages (4A) (17-12) – 6; Baker County (Glen St. Mary) (4A) (16-13) – 4; Providence (Jacksonville) (3A) (13-12) – 4; Union County (Lake Butler) (1A) (15-14) – 2; Oak Hall (Gainesville) (2A) (13-6) – 1; Vanguard (Ocala) (5A) (18-10) – 1.

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