Northern Virginia Top 10: Potomac Slips to No. 5; Stafford, Loudoun Valley Join Latest Poll


April 8 - Stafford and Loudoun Valley joined the rankings for the first time this season while Battlefield continued its run atop the rankings for a fifth consecutive week in the latest Northern Virginia Top 10 Poll, sponsored by Prime Time Baseball in Alexandria.

Coach Jay Burkhart’s Bobcats (7-0) received 35 of 41 first-place votes and 402 total points after shutting out Stonewall Jackson, 11-0, in their lone game last week. They were followed by No. 2 Lake Braddock (7-0), No. 3 Patriot (6-0) and No. 4 Westfield (6-0), each of whom moved up as No. 5 Potomac (7-1) dropped three spots following their first loss of the season, 3-1, to West Potomac (5-2) on Thursday.

The Bruins, who have yet to lose under new coach John Thomas, got the final five first-place votes and 360 points after earning wins over W.T. Woodson and Fredericksburg Christian. They’ll get a big test tomorrow night, when they travel to rival and defending Class 6 state champion West Springfield (5-2).

The Pioneers also beat Stonewall Jackson, 11-4, in their lone contest last week and got 298 points. And the Bulldogs, who posted their sixth straight shutout to begin the season in a 3-0 win over then-No. 10 Centreville on Tuesday, garnered 277 points. Coach Rob Hahne’s club gets two tests this week against two preseason Top 10 teams, Chantilly (4-4) and Freedom-South Riding (4-4), who remain dangerous despite slow starts.

Coach Mike Covington’s Panthers beat Colgan, 13-3, in their first game last week, but stranded eight runners in scoring position and were unable to come up with a clutch hit after loading the bases with no outs in the seventh inning in their loss to West Potomac. Potomac, which received 254 points, gets another test tomorrow, when they host a C.D. Hylton (6-2) team that is off to a strong start.

Episcopal (10-1), off to its best start in a number of years under coach Chris Warren, received 136 points and moved up one spot to No. 6 after sweeping its three games last week - shutting out St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes twice before knocking off Potomac School over the weekend.

No. 7 Madison (4-2) got 106 points and also moved up one spot after its 4-1 win over Marshall, and No. 9 Bishop O’Connell (8-3) remained at No. 9  with 58 points after winning two of three games, both one-run decisions against WCAC opponents Bishop Ireton and Paul VI Catholic.

Stafford (7-1) beat Riverbend, 5-4, and entered the rankings this week at No. 8 after garnering 61 points. At No. 10 was Loudoun Valley (6-1), which posted wins over Park View and Broad Run and received 51 points. Two teams, No. 6 South Lakes (5-2) and No. 10 Centreville (5-2), dropped from this week’s poll.

Also receiving votes this week were the following teams: Brentsville District (48), Centreville (40), South Lakes (31), West Potomac (27), Highland School (23), Yorktown (19), Briar Woods (16), West Springfield (16), Heritage (15), Osbourn Park (14) and C.D. Hylton (2).

Sponsor: The magazine’s Northern Virginia Top 10 Poll is sponsored by the Prime Time Baseball Academy. For more information on the academy, visit its website at www.primetimebaseball.co.

Photo of Loudoun Valley coach Wayne Todd by Scott Shepherd