Posted: 2:19 pm Tuesday, March 5th, 2013
By Jeff Greer
American Heritage put a strangehold on the top spot in the Post softball rankings with a shutout win over Palm Beach Gardens last week.
The Stallions (6-0) are the last remaining undefeated team in Palm Beach County, and they’ve won some big games along the way. They also beat Palm Beach Central last week, shutting out the Broncos. Heritage returned a ton of talent, and has both Corrie Boggess and Madison Hir pitching well in front of a very good lineup that fields well, too. Heritage is primed for another state run.
The top four, in my opinion, is now cemented for a little while. And by a little while, I mean until Tuesday night, when Park Vista and Jupiter tangle at West Boynton Park. Those games always have an extra intensity to them, and could be a preview of a regional quarterfinal or semifinal in May.
Here’s the full list of rankings, with more detail below.
1. American Heritage (6-0)
2. Palm Beach Gardens (6-2)
3. Park Vista (8-2)
4. Jupiter (8-3)
5. West Boca Raton (5-3)*
6. Wellington (8-3)*
7. Palm Beach Central (3-3)
8. Dwyer (3-4)
9. Benjamin (8-1)
10. Spanish River (5-1)
* – teams played Monday night, so records reflect results, but rankings were done prior to games.
Best of the Treasure Coast: Okeechobee, South Fork.
Corrie Boggess at Heritage is the frontrunner for Small Schools Player of the Year. She’s won three games as a starting pitcher, including Heritage’s resounding 6-0 win over Gardens last week. She can hit, too. Boggess drove in five runs in the win against Gardens and ranks sixth in the small schools batting leaders. (I always have my doubts about batting averages from some schools. I’d guess Boggess is closer to first than the rankings say.)
Gardens isn’t going anywhere, not with wins over both Vista and Jupiter. Aside from a surprising season-opening loss to Suncoast and the disappointing Heritage game, Gardens has clearly been the second-best team around. As long as Montanah Rogers and Sydney Jones are hitting well to complement Virginia Spring, Ta’Coia Williams and Tiffany Lower, the Gators’ lineup is tough to top.
Park Vista and Jupiter will settle their differences tonight, as I mentioned above. Both teams have good fielding, with Jupiter owning the better pitching and Vista the better hitting.
West Boca was ranked ahead of Wellington, with the caveat they’d play Monday night. Wellington won that game, rather handily (7-0), and enters its Thursday tilt at Gardens with a bit of momentum. Then again, Wellington left us scratching our heads with its performances last week. The Wolverines lost 20-3 at home against Gardens (20-3!) but then beat good-but-struggling Seminole Ridge. That’s after a nice showing at the Park Vista Invitational and a strong fight against Jupiter.
For those who think records should be better than .500 to be ranked, I present Central and Dwyer. Central is 3-3, but its three losses are at Jupiter, Vista and Heritage. The Broncos’ three wins? Wellington, Dwyer and Boca. Not bad. Dwyer’s schedule is just as tough, with four losses coming against Central, Gardens, Jupiter and Wellington. The Panthers beat King’s Academy, Martin County and West Boca.
After that, it’s tough to find teams to rank ninth and 10th. Like I said above, the teams we thought would be in the rankings at this point — Boca, Seminole Ridge, Suncoast, maybe even Grandview Prep or King’s — have all struggled, but are always in contention for the rankings. Spanish River’s 5-1 so far, including a win over Boca. Benjamin may not have the schedule strength, but it’s hard to entirely ignore an 8-1 record when teams with better strength of schedule are struggling.
GAMES TO WATCH
— Games at 7 p.m. unless noted
Jupiter at Park Vista
Palm Beach Central at Palm Beach Gardens
Dwyer at Boca
King’s Academy at Benjamin, 4 p.m.
Grandview Prep at Dwyer
Park Vista at Boca
Wellington at Palm Beach Gardens
Suncoast at Grandview Prep
1. Angela Vasquez (FH) .704
2. Kaitlyn Burkhardt (JIL) .571
3. Emily Lochten (PV) .571
4. Savannah Fruin (SPR) .529
5. Taylor Scher (PV) .514
6. Brianne Lint (SUN) .500
7. Kassy Gammett (FH) .500
T8. Jessica Clark (JIL) .478
T8. Montanah Rogers (PBG) .478
9. Kasandra Castle (PBC) .474
10. Katelyn Morfis (JIL) .462
1. Meghan Callahan (LPA) .727
2. Kiana Rivera (JC) .722
3. Cali Gumpel (WC) .714
4. Arden Pettit (BEN) .666
5. Baillie Jorth (PJP) .650
6. Corrie Boggess (AH) .647
7. Calli Norton (PJP) .625
8. Tyler Chnupa (JC) .600
T9. Jessica Mohl (AH) .579
T9. Taylor Martin (LPA) .579
T9. Soclaina Van Gurp (TRINC) .579
10. Taishdlene Kirindongo (TRINC) .571
Large Schools (by wins)
1. Sammy Wrobiewski (SPR) 5-1, 0.34 ERA, 50 K, 41 IP
2. Kylee Hanson (JUP) 5-2, 1.36 ERA, 79 K, 51 1/3 IP
3. Amanda Blanchard (PBC) 3-3, 0.55 ERA, 53 K, 38 IP
4. Gabby Decker (PV) 3-1, 1.71 ERA, 26 K, 32 2/3 IP
5. Bailey Whalen (PBG) 3-2, 3.79 ERA, 18 K, 24 IP
1. Jalysa Semenuk (WC) 5-2, 2.54 ERA, 66 K, 41 1/3 IP
2. Taylor Strickland (LPA) 4-1, 1.63 ERA, 36 K, 30 IP
3. Kali Chaplin (BEN) 4-0, 2.37 ERA, 29 K, 23 2/3 IP
4. Lizzy Rahal (JC) 4-1, 2.67 ERA, 45 K, 42 IP
5. Corrie Boggess (AH) 3-0, 0.51 ERA, 38 K, 18 IP