GAINESVILLE — Despite losing their first games of the season, defending 4A state champion Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) and Providence (Jacksonville) remain the top two teams in the baseball Prep Zone Power Poll.
Unlike last week, where Trinity Christian was a unanimous #1, this week’s poll is split and extremely close.
Trinity Christian (11-1) hosted the Tournament of Champions in Jacksonville last week, and started off with a walkoff 4-3 win over two-time defending 1A state champion then-#16 Williston on Friday. The Conquerors then met Bishop Verot (Fort Myers), who they beat at JetBlue Park in Fort Myers last May to win the state title, and hammered them 14-0 on Saturday.
But in their second game on Saturday, Trinity Christian dropped their first game of the season 9-7 to last season’s 3A state champion Westminster Christian (Miami), who is ranked 2nd in the lastest 4A state baseball poll and #19 nationally by Max Preps.
Providence (11-1) also participated in the Tournament of Champions, and handled Westminster Christian 9-3 on Friday and Williston 11-1 on Saturday before dropping their first game of the season later Saturday to Central (Phenix City, AL) 5-1.
Despite the Stallions picking up one more first place vote than Trinity Christian this week, the Conquerors have more total votes and remain the top team for the fourth week in a row. Providence is #1 in 4A in the latest prepzone.com state baseball rankings, with Trinity Christian now 4th.
University (Orange City) moves up two spots to third after a 3-0 week and received a first-place vote as well. The Titans (10-0-1) are the only remaining undefeated team in this week’s poll.
Bolles (Jacksonville) drops from a tie for third last week to #4. The Bulldogs (10-2) dropped a game to Westminster (Atlanta, GA) 8-7 but knocked off then-RV Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) 7-4. They just edged out North Marion (Citra), who rounds out the top five.
The Colts (10-2), split two games with district rival Belleview, who was receiving votes a week ago. The Rattlers (12-2) moved into the poll this week at #17.
Leading off the second five is Forest (Ocala). The Wildcats (8-2) moved up two spots from last week after two wins over then-#19 East Ridge (Clermont).
Creekside (St. Johns) edges out nearby district rival Bartram Trail (St. Johns) for the 7th spot. The two teams were tied for 7th a week ago, and split two meetings last week with the visiting team winning each game. The Knights (9-3) are just a point ahead of Bartram Trail (8-3).
Rounding out the top ten is Terry Parker (Jacksonville), who moved up two spots to 9th, and South Sumter (Bushnell), who didn’t play last week due to spring break and stayed put at #10.
The biggest mover in the poll this week is Yulee (11-1), who moved up six spots from 18th to 12th after wins at then-#17 Oakleaf (Orange Park) and Fleming Island (Orange Park), who is ranked 14th this week. Also moving into the poll along with Belleview is Nature Coast (Brooksville) at #18 and Deltona #19.
East Ridge (Clermont) dropped out along with Oakleaf (Orange Park), Williston, and Mandarin (Jacksonville).
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.
PREP ZONE POWER POLL – 2016 BASEBALL POLL #4
(School, followed by classification, first-place votes, current record through 3/12 and total voting points)
1. Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) (4A) (3) (11-1) – 154
2. Providence (Jacksonville) (4A) (11-1) (4) – 152
3. University (Orange City) (9A) (1) (10-0-1) – 148
4. Bolles (Jacksonville) (5A) (10-2) – 130
5. North Marion (Citra) (6A) (10-2) – 124
6. Forest (Ocala) (8A) (8-2) – 123
7. Creekside (St. Johns) (7A) (9-3) –110
8. Bartram Trail (St. Johns) (7A) (8-3) – 109
9. Terry Parker (Jacksonville) (6A) (10-1) – 91
10. South Sumter (Bushnell) (5A) (9-1) – 89
11. Clay (Green Cove Springs) (6A) (9-3) – 79
12. Yulee (5A) (11-1) – 62
13. Buchholz (Gainesville) (8A) (8-4) – 61
14. Fleming Island (Orange Park) (8A) (8-3) – 57
15. Spruce Creek (Port Orange) (9A) (9-3) – 49
16. Nease (Ponte Vedra) (7A) (10-3) – 25
17. Belleview (6A) (12-2) – 24
18. Nature Coast (Brooksville)(5A) (11-1) – 22
19. Deltona (7A) (9-2) – 20
20. Gainesville (7A) (11-4) – 9
Also receiving votes: Mandarin (Jacksonville) (9A) (6-4) – 8; Williston (1A) (5-7) – 6; Lafayette (Mayo) (1A) (9-3) – 5; Ridgeview (Orange Park) (6A) (10-1) – 5; Chiefland (1A) (10-3) – 4; Eustis (5A) (9-2) – 4; Springstead (Spring Hill) (6A) (10-3) – 4; Oakleaf (Orange Park) (8A) (7-5) – 3;Madison County (1A) (9-3) – 2; Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) (5A) (7-5) – 1.