The wait is finally over ... the state tournament starts Friday for Class C and continues through the weekend. But before the first pitch is thrown our latest rankings are here.
The Sartell Muskies stayed put in the No. 1 spot after garnering first place votes from three of our four pollsters. The Raymond Rockets plummeted down to the No. 6 spot this week while the Plato Blue Jays moved up to the second spot. The Hutchinson Huskies moved up a slot to No. 3 while the Hampton Cardinals are getting a serious look as a contender by moving up to the No. 4 spot after not cracking the rankings last week. Elsewhere, the Fort Ripley Rebels moved down a spot and the Jordan Brewers cruised up to No. 7. The Kimball Express moved into the top 10 at No. 8 while the Lamberton Long Sox moved down to No. 10. The Fairmont Martins moved into the top 10 at No. 10 and Green Isle slipped to No. 10.
Records and information may differ slightly due to when the rankings were submitted. For up-to-date records and information, visit mnbaseball.org
Tom Elliott - St. Cloud
1. Raymond Rockets ... OK, they were the third seed in Section 11C. But they're back after a season with a target on their back.
2. Sartell Muskies ... Sartell looks like one of the favorites in the Class C state tournament after an impressive run in Region 1C, including a no-hitter by David Deminsky.
3. Plato Blue Jays ... The 2015 state champs are poised for another long state run after winning Section 7A.
4. Jordan Brewers ... They won a very tough Section 6A and are another team to watch at state.
5. Hutchinson Huskies ... The Section 12A champs will be one of the contenders for a state C title.
6. Sobieski Skis ... The Skis squeaked into the state tournament as a fourth seed from Region 8C, which has four very good teams competing at state. The bracket has given them no favors. First, they open with a tournament-tested Blue Earth squad. Whoever wins that game faces Plato in the second round.
7. Fort Ripley Rebels ... The Rebels wound up with the second seed in Region 8C. Buckman beat them twice in the playoffs, but this ranking is for a great season.
8. Hampton Cardinals ... Definitely a team to watch in state after winning Section 4A.
9. Lake Henry Lakers ... Lake Henry has a great offense and enough pitching to be an underdog pick at state.
10. Buckman Billygoats ... Buckman is really young and really talented. They won Region 8C and will not be an easy team to beat at state.
Aaron Worm - New Prague
4. Green Isle
5. Fort Ripley
Jason Kuerschner - Hollander
1.Sartell Muskies – Cruised through league and Region 1 playoffs. Looking to continue their winning ways thru to Labor Day weekend.
2. Plato Blue Jays – Made it through unscathed in Region 7 tourney, posting three shutouts including a perfect game against a proven Waconia Lakers team. Only gave up two runs through the four games.
3.Hutchinson Huskies – Had to come through the losers' bracket of Region 12, but still claimed the top spot. I expect them to be a player come Labor Day weekend.
4.Fort Ripley Rebels – After losing their first game on the season in Region 8 play, they came through the losers' bracket to claim second after playing three games in one day. A potential third round matchup with Sartell looms in the tourney.
5.Hampton Cardinals – came out on top in Region 4, their record may not show it but they are a quality team that plays a tough schedule with many “B” teams.
6.Kimball Express – Outlasted everyone in Region 11 to claim the top spot, beating Raymond and Watkins on the way.
7.Buckman Billygoats – Came out on top of Region 8 and are playing their best when it counts. They have a tough second round matchup with the winner of Raymond/Mora. If they get by that one they could be around for a labor day weekend run.
8.Raymond Rockets – They may be the No. 3 seed out of Region 11 but they are the defending state champs. However a repeat will not be easy as they have Mora and Buckman in the first two rounds, if they advance.
9.Sobieski Skis – Like Fort Ripley they were very successful during the regular season, unfortunately only qualified as a No. 4 seed out of Region 8. Looking forward to a potential second round matchup with Plato – Jendro vs. C. Odegaard, now that is must see amateur baseball!
10. Hadley Buttermakers – May be the No. 3 seed out of Region 13 but they were dominant during the season. I think they can make a run to Labor Day weekend as well.
Trent Sukalski - Jackson
1. Sartell Muskies
2. Hutchinson Huskies
3. Lamberton Long Sox
4. Fairmont Martins
5. Watkins Clippers
6. Plato Blue Jays
7. Jordan Brewers
8. Raymond Rockets
9. Milroy Irish
10. Fort Ripley Rebels
CLASS C RANKINGS (as of Aug. 18)
Tiebreaker went to the team with the highest single vote
1. Sartell Muskies (39)
2. Plato Blue Jays (30)
3. Hutchinson Huskies (23)
4. Hampton Cardinals (18)
5. Fort Ripley Rebels (18)
6. Raymond Rockets (16)
7. Jordan Brewers (15)
8. Kimball Express (10)
9. Lamberton Long Sox (8)
10. Fairmont Martins (7)
10. Green Isle (7)
Also receiving votes: Sobieski Skis (2), Buckman Billygoats (2), Lake Henry Lakers (1), Union Hill Bulldogs (1), Faribault Lakers (1), Fergus Falls Hurricanes (1), Hadley Buttermakers (1), Watkins Clippers (1), Milroy Irish (1).