Local teams rank high as prep begins for playoffs
Published 9:36 am Friday, April 13, 2012
With the 2012 season coming to a close, two of the biggest heavyweights in the county are preparing to make a run at their individual playoff titles: Pike Liberal Arts School and Charles Henderson High School.
The second-ranked Pike Liberal Arts School Patriots (21-5, 11-2) are coming off a win over then No. 2 Glenwood School with three major road games left in the season before the state playoffs on April 26.
The Patriots have been dueling for region dominance with Glenwood all season with neither side being able to get an edge on the other.
The Patriots took the win in their most recent meeting on April 10 thanks to a dominating performance on the mound by pitcher Blake Floyd, who struck out 13 batters while allowing eight hits in seven innings of work.
While Floyd was keeping the Glenwood offense contained, Patriot designated hitter Reed Dickey was able to bring in three runs for the tem to help give them an early advantage.
The Patriots have three road games left before the playoffs begin, facing off against Fort Dale, Ashford and a season ending rematch with Glenwood.
With wins at Fort Dale and Glenwood adding into the Patriots area record the team will need to put on solid showings as they finish out the year.
Across town the 5A Charles Henderson High School Trojans (20-5, 6-0) secured an undefeated area record with a 12-1 road win over Carroll, their first undefeated area record since 2009.
The fifth-ranked Trojans, who have been in limbo over the past week due to spring break, turned in a dominating performance in their last two games against Carroll, which allowed the Trojans to lock up the area championship.
The two games saw solid performances from several Trojan players, such as senior first baseman Joey Denison who brought in five runs for the team in the first game against Carroll and pitcher Tripp Blackmon who allowed only one earned run in five innings of work in game two.
The championship title will allow the Trojans to host the first round of their state playoffs on April 20, which will pair them with either Russell County, who knocked out the Trojans last season in round one, or Tallassee.
Before the Trojans can worry about the playoffs though they have three more road games to get through against Northview, Trinity and Enterprise while finding their footing again after coming back from spring break.
Only time will tell if the Patriots or the Trojans have what it takes to be state champions, though if their successes on the field can hold up for the remainder of the season it’s far from an impossibility.