It's showdown time in North Carolina as No. 2 Alexander Central will face No. 8 North Davidson on Tuesday to take the spotlight of this week's MaxPreps Xcellent 25 National Softball Rankings.
Alexander Central is working on a 63-game win streak, while Davidson has won 53 of its last 54 games. The winner moves on to the North Carolina 4A state title game. Central is the defending champion.
No. 9 The Woodlands and No. 25 Deer Park could meet Saturday in the Texas 5A final if each wins its respective Friday semifinal game.
Amador Valley remained No. 1 in this week's poll by beating Castro Valley on a no-hitter by Johanna Grauer. Barbers Hill remained at No. 3 while a pair of California teams – Archbishop Mitty (San Jose) and Mission Viejo - were ranked Nos. 4 and 5, respectively. All three recorded impressive playoff wins to remain in the Top 5.
Teams from five different states rounded out the Top 10.
New to the Top 25 this week are No. 19 Union-Sebewaing (Sebewaing, Mich.), No. 20 Enumclaw (Wash.) and No. 23 James Logan (Union City, Calif.). Union (32-0) and Enumclaw (21-0) are unbeaten and 23-2 Logan has won 18 straight.
MaxPreps Xcellent 25 National Softball Rankings1. (No. 1 last week) Amador Valley (Pleasanton, Calif.), 25-0 Johanna Grauer
did it all as the Dons opened the playoffs with an 11-0 win over Castro Valley. She struck out 12, allowed no hits and drove in four runs. Senior Ashley Lotosynski
also drove in four runs. Grauer, who is 25-0 with a 0.47 ERA, has allowed just 51 base hits this season.2. (2) Alexander Central (Taylorsville, N.C.), 31-0
Central beat Lake Norman, 10-3, and plays unbeaten and No. 8 North Davidson (Lexington) Tuesday in the state 4A semifinals. The winner moves on to the state 4A finals against the winner of the Cape Fear/Middle Creek game.
3. (3) Barbers Hill (Mt. Belvieu, Texas), 32-0
Led by twin sisters Randi Rupp
and Sara Rupp
the Eagles beat Dawson (Pearland) twice (11-3, 12-4) to reach the state 4A final four. Sara hit a grand slam and was 5-for-8 with five RBIs in the two games and Randi picked up both victories. The Eagles face 37-5 Ennis on Friday with the winner playing the winner of the Aledo versus Hays game on Saturday for the 4A state title.4. (4) Archbishop Mitty (San Jose, Calif.), 28-1
Mitty beat Capuchino (San Bruno) 8-1 and on Tuesday will face Valley Christian for the fourth time this season. VCHS is the only team to defeat Mitty (2-0 on May 5) this season.
5. (5) Mission Viejo (Calif.), 24-1
Behind juniors Taylor McQuillin
and Alyssa Palomino
, the Diablos beat Millikan (Long Beach) 7-0 and Westlake 1-0 in 10 innings to advance to the CIF Southern Section D-2 semifinals on Tuesday versus Moorpark. McQuillin pitched a pair of shutouts while Palomino hit her 16th home run of the season.6. (6) Lebanon (Ohio), 30-0
Lebanon has given up only 19 runs while scoring 267 this season after wins over Ursuline Academy, 3-0, and Edgewood, 4-0. Lebanon opens the postseason on Wednesday by hosting 24-6 Northmont (Clayton).7. (7) Olathe East (Kan.), 22-0
The Hawks have won 41 straight and open state 6A tournament play Thursday against 12-10 Derby.8. (12) North Davidson (Lexington, N.C.), 30-0
Alexander Central gets more attention, but the Black Knights have yet to lose this season and have outscored their opponents 270-43 this season. Sophomore Carson Pace
is 21-0 with a 0.74 ERA. Senior Haley Pace
is batting. 510.9. (9) The Woodlands (Texas), 38-3
The Highlanders slipped past Rockwall 2-1 in Waco to sweep their Class 5A Region II championship series and capture a spot in the state tournament for the second time in four years.10. (10) Sherwood (Sandy Spring, Md.), 22-0
Sherwood, which has won 62 straight games and the last three Maryland 4A titles, pounded out 15 hits and got three-hit pitching from Meggie Dejter
in its state title win over Chesapeake.11. (11) Immaculate Heart Academy (Washington Township, N.J.), 28-0
IHA beat Pascack Valley (Hillsdale) 12-1 and Northern Highlands (Allendale) 4-1, and on Tuesday will play Academy of the Holy Angels (Demarest) in the quarterfinals of the NJISAA Non-Public A State Tournament.
12. (8) Vacaville (Calif.), 29-1-1
The Bulldogs lost their first game of the season, 3-2, to Pleasant Grove (Elk Grove), but bounced back one day later to win the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section title with a 5-1 record in the week-long tournament as sophomore Katie Kibby
pitched her 16th shutout of the season in a 3-0 win over Pleasant Grove. Junior Julia DePonte
(.530, 36 RBIs) and freshman Alyse Rojas
(.529) led the Bulldogs in hitting.13. (13) Crown Point (Ind.), 26-0
The Bulldogs opened sectional play with a 10-0 win over Merrillville. Miranda Elish
is 20-0 with 185 strikeouts in 106 innings and a 0.20 ERA.14. (14) Sparkman (Harvest, Ala.), 63-4-1 *Season complete
Sparkman won the 6A state title.
15. (15) St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), 30-2 *Season complete
The Raiders won Florida's 7A state title for the second-straight year. 16. (16) Pacifica (Garden Grove, Calif.), 27-4-1
In a 6-0 win over Camarillo, Kaylee Carlson
pitched a two-hit shutout with one walk and 10 strikeouts to help Pacifica advance in the CIF Southern Section playoffs. It was Carlson's third-straight playoff shutout. Pacifica faces Canyon on Tuesday.17. (17) Eastern Tech (Baltimore), 24-0
Tech beat Easton 3-1 to capture the Maryland 2A state championship last Friday. Senior Jordan Cargile
pitched a three-hitter as the Mavericks won their first state title. Brooke Samios-Uy
, who entered Friday's game batting .671, had two hits in the victory.18. (18) South Salem (Ore.), 26-1
After ending the regular season with wins over highly regarded West Albany (1-0) and North Medford (4-3), the Saxons enter the Oregon 6A state tournament as heavy favorites. 19. (NR) Unionville-Sebewaing (Sebewaing, Mich.), 32-0
Behind the pitching of Erica Treiber
and Nicole Bauer
, the Patriots have been dominating all season. They face Reese on Tuesday, for the conference final.
20. (NR) Enumclaw (Wash.), 21-0
is a key reason the unbeaten Hornets should contend for the 3A state title. She has a 19-0 record and 0.33 ERA with 200 strikeouts in 106 innings. Her hitting numbers are also impressive — .554 average and .867 slugging percentage with 39 RBIs. The state tournament begins Friday.21. (21) Curtis (River Ridge, La.), 30-2 *Season complete
The Patriots won the state 3A title.22. (22) La Grange (Texas), 38-2
The Cougars, led by Alyssa Angel's
.598 batting average and unbeaten pitcher Missy Zoch
(29-0), will meet Huffman in the state 3A semifinals on Friday.23. (NR) James Logan (Union City, Calif.), 23-2
Logan is a win away from reaching the CIF North Coast Section D-I championship game for a fifth-consecutive season. Logan has 18 straight wins, most recently 5-2 over San Ramon. The two-time defending champions will be the host in Tuesday's semifinals.24. (24) West Florida (Pensacola, Fla.), 28-1 *Season complete
The Jaguars won the state 4A title.25. (25) Deer Park (Texas), 37-6
Deer Park had its 16-game win streak snapped, but bounced back one day later to beat Bellaire twice and advance to the 5A state final four. Senior Caitlin Plocheck's
RBI single in the top of the seventh inning provided the difference as Deer Park defeated Bellaire 5-4 in the decisive game of the best-of-three Class 5A Region 3 finals.Dropped out:
Baylor (Chattanooga, Tenn.), Bay City Western (Mich.) and Daniel Boone (Birdsboro, Pa.).