it the calm before the storm in the nation’s junior-college ranks.
post-season tournament play scheduled to begin on many fronts around
the country later this week, Perfect Game’s latest ranking of the
Top 50 junior-college teams has seen almost no turnover in the past
week. Chipola (Fla.) remains firmly installed as the No. 1 team, and
every other club in the top 10 has held firm.
(36-10) wrapped up regular-season play more than a week ago and sat
idle for the next several days as it geared up for play in the
hotly-contested Florida junior-college state tournament (or,
technically, the National Junior College Athletic Association Region
8 tournament), set for May 9-14 in Lakeland, Fla., with a berth in
the Junior College World Series on the line.
Indians open play against No. 37 Central Florida, but will have their
work cut out for them as the expanded 10-team field also includes No.
5 St. Johns River (37-12), No. 10 Polk State (36-12) and No. 11 Gulf
Coast State (37-12). Like Chipola, all those teams were idle last
of the nation’s remaining top junior colleges will also begin or
resume tournament play this week—either at the state or regional
levels. As in Florida, berths in the Junior College World Series,
scheduled for May 24-31 in Grand Junction, Colo., will be at stake in
Region 5 (Western Texas, New Mexico), Region 6 (Kansas), Region 14
(Eastern Texas, Louisiana) and Region 22 (Alabama).
junior colleges are not members of the NJCAA and do not participate
in the Junior College World Series, but that state has nine schools
represented in the Top 50. California conducts its own 36-team state
tournament, and the field was whittled to 16 last weekend. No.
4-ranked Orange Coast, the No. 1 seed in southern California, and No.
7 Chabot, No. 1 seed in northern California, both made it
successfully through the first weekend of competition by winning
best-of-3 series, and those schools will play another set of
best-of-3 series this weekend, with berths in the state Final Four at
every nationally-prominent team went unscathed last week as No. 15
Central Arizona (now No. 35) lost in two straight games in the first
round of the Arizona JC championship series for the second straight
year, while No. 16 Walters State (now No. 36) unexpectedly fell in
the Tennessee state tournament.
NJCAA Division II schools remain ranked in PG’s all-inclusive Top
50, led by No. 18 Mesa (Ariz.) CC. D-II schools will stage their own
Junior College World Series, also from May 24-31, in Enid, Okla.