By Ron Brocato, Clarion Herald Sports
The most recent baseball power ratings show that Brother Martin has the No. 1 team in Division I for Select schools.
Those same rankings, conducted by Louisiana Sportsline, lists Dominican No. 2 and Mount Carmel No. 3 behind the top-rated softball team in Division I John Curtis, even though Dominican has a better record than the defending Division I champion.
That’s probably because the two had not met on the dusty diamond before the daily rankings have come out.
There are still five weeks remaining in the softball season before the state’s best meet in Sulphur for the division and class championships on April 26-27.
The top three seeds from the Catholic League will be there. Curtis entered the week with a 12-3 record, followed by Dominican at 11-2 and Mount Carmel at 3-4.
The Cubs’ record may not be representative of a playoff-bound team until one looks at the remainder of Division I. Numbers 4-8 are Evangel (5-10), Byrd (3-9), Archbishop Chapelle (3-8), St. Joseph’s Academy (3-12) and McKinley (1-4).
More impressive are the softball teams at the top tier of Division II, which Parkview Baptist has dominated the last two years. The Baton Rouge school, which outscored four playoff opponents, 51-15, in 2018, is once again the No. 1 ranked team, with a 15-2 record.
Archbishop Hannan, a perennial power, is ranked second with an 11-5 record. But three of the four remaining top seeds – Thomas Jefferson, Haynes Charter and Lusher – have played fewer than 10 games.
But don’t rule out three area Catholic schools in the race to make the state tournament. Despite its 8-7 record, St. Charles Catholic has been a regular in the tournament. Academy of Our Lady has earned a No. 9 ranking after winning six of its first nine games. And St. Scholastica is ranked No. 12 on the plus side with a 7-3-1 record.
The Catholic League baseball race may be as exciting and competitive as it was during the basketball season. As district play gets underway, Brother Martin has been the hot team, having posted a 14-2 record entering the week.
Five of the seven district members have plus-.500 records as league play begins. Archbishop Rummel enters this key time with a 12-3 worksheet, Jesuit is 11-5, St. Augustine is 8-5, and Archbishop Shaw is 8-6 and also playing well.
But the best of the bunch may be the 2018 state runner-up St. Paul’s, the division’s No. 2 power with a 12-3 record. The Wolves appear to be the class of District 6-5A. Their competition, Mandeville (10-2), ranks No. 7 among non-Select teams.
Ron Brocato can be reached at email@example.com.