Class C rankings: Say it ain’t So-bieski?

By Nick Gerhardt

For the second straight poll, our experts had nearly no doubt in picking Waconia as the top team in the state after the Lakers received three of the four first-place votes. But after that the waters got muddy.

We’ve got a three-way tie for the No. 2 spot in this week’s poll with Sobieski making the biggest jump from No. 7 last time. St. Patrick remained at No. 2 while Sartell inched into the three-way tie.

Outside of the top three we’ve got newcomers in Windom, Carver, Springfield and Isanti. Turns out Twitter isn’t all that bad.

Here’s what the experts thought this time around. 

Kip Kovar — Howard Lake

1. Waconia Lakers — Remain undefeated in CRVL play. Have already clinched CRVL North Title and No. 1 seed in Region 7C Tournament before the calendar turned to July. A team on a mission as they are one of three hosts for the state tournament. Complete team in all aspects.

2. Buffalo Bulldogs — Have gained control of a tough North Star League. After bursting onto the scene last year surprising people, the Bulldogs have proved they are for real. A team that can knock the cover off the ball. They’re for real.

3. St. Patrick Irish — A runner-up finish last season at the state tournament. Look to be the team in the DRS. Allowing just 1.8 runs per game in league play. Have won 10 league games in a row.

4. Sobieski Skis — Back in Class C, Sobieski may be a team people have forgotten about. Spoiler alert – They’re still good. Playing well in the Victory League, Sobieski will be a tough team to face down the stretch. Any team with Tyler Jendro is dangerous.

5. Isanti Redbirds — A team on the rise and one to watch. Have won 10 of the last 11 games. 16-3 overall with only Class C losses to Carver and Sartell. My sleeper for this year’s state tournament.

6. Buckman Billygoats — Another top team in the Victory League. A perennial state tournament deep capable of a deep run. Playing well again in the Victory League with a 7-0 league record.

7. Sartell Muskies — Another perennial team to keep an eye on. Some impressive wins already this year. Tim Burns continues to knock the cover off the ball.

8. Carver Black Sox — Leading the way in the CRVL South. They completed the season sweep of Young America this past week. Followed that up with a hiccup against Green Isle (6-5 loss). A strong offense with a lethal bullpen. Chance to show they are for real with matchups against Watertown, Hamburg and Plato next up.

9. Young America Cardinals — A team with the talent to match up with anyone in the state. Just haven’t put it all together yet this year. This is a team that should get hot late and will once again be a lot of people’s choices to make a deep run. They trail Carver by 1 1/2 games in CRVL South.

10. Delano A’s — A tough week drops them a few spots but this team is too good to be down for long. Losses to Maple Plain and Buffalo have the A’s in second in the North Star League standings. Will look to get back on track over the final month of the regular season.

Aaron Worm — Albert Lea

1. Sartell Muskies — 21-0, hard to argue with that, that’s why they are No. 1.

2. St. Patrick Irish — Irish have won 10 in a row.

3. Waconia Lakers — A perfect 15-0 in the Crow.

4. Sobieski Skis — I didn’t realize they were back in Class C, we know how good they are.

5. Buckman Billygoats — The Goats are 11-1 and along with the Skis, the top team in the Victory.

6. Isanti Redbirds — Twitter told me they are good, Twitter was right, they are 17-3.

7. Waterville Indians — 16-2 on the season.

8. Springfield Tigers — 10-0 in the Tomahawk East.

9. New Ulm Brewers — 9-1 in Tomahawk East.

10. Raymond Rockets — Wins against Jordan and Cold Spring.

Tom Elliott — Willmar

1. Waconia Lakers — They are 15-0 in the Crow River Valley North and 20-1 overall. They look like the team to beat.

2. Sobieski Skis — Sobieski is 8-0 in the Victory League and 13-0 overall. 

3. Sartell Muskies — Sartell is 21-0 and dominating the Sauk Valley League.

4. St. Patrick Irish — A formidable team with a 13-3 record in the Dakota-Rice-Scott League.

5. Windom Pirates — They are looking like the top team in the First Nite League with a 14-3 record.

6. Springfield Tigers — Springfield is 10-0 in the Tomahawk East so far.

7. Watkins Clippers — The Clippers have the best record in the Central Valley League North Division with a 7-2 record. It’s a very good league, especially at the top.

8. Milroy Yankees — Milroy is 8-1 in the Corn Belt League, with teams like Bird Island and Raymond right behind.

9. St. Martin Martins — The Martins are 9-1 in the Stearns County League South Division, the league’s best record in either division.

10. Sauk Centre Titans — Sauk Centre has the top record in the Resorters League at 8-1.

Chad Knutson — Heron Lake Lakers

1.Waconia Lakers

2. Sartell Muskies

3. Sobieski Skis

4. St. Patrick Irish

5. Buffalo Bulldogs

6. Carver Black Sox

7. Isanti Redbirds

8. Young America Cardinals

9. Springfield Tigers

10. Waterville Indians

Honorable Mention – Red Wing Aces, Jordan Brewers, Buckman Billygoats, Bemidji Blue Ox, Luverne Redbirds, Windom Pirates, New Ulm Brewers, St. Martin Martins, Watkins Clippers, Cold Spring Rockies, St. Clair Wood Ducks, Bluffton Braves, Delano A’s, Hutchinson Huskies, Faribault Lakers, Prior Lake Mudcats, Milroy Yankees, New London-Spicer Twins, Plato Blue Jays, Fergus Falls Canes.

Class C rankings (As of July 8)(Pts)(Previous)

1. Waconia Lakers (38)(1)

2. St. Patrick Irish (31)(2)

2. Sobieski Skis (31)(7)

2. Sartell Muskies (31)(3)

5. Buffalo Bulldogs (15)(10)

5. Isanti Redbirds (15)(NR)

7. Buckman Billygoats (11)(NR)

8. Springfield Tigers (10)(NR)

9. Carver Black Sox (8)(NR)

10. Windom Pirates (6)(NR)

Also receiving votes: Young America Cardinals, Delano A’s, Waterville Indians, New Ulm Brewers, Raymond Rockets, Watkins Clippers, Milroy Yankees, St. Martin Martins, Sauk Centre Titans, Red Wing Aces, Jordan Brewers, Bemidji Blue Ox, Luverne Redbirds, Cold Spring Rockies, St. Clair Wood Ducks, Bluffton Braves, Hutchinson Huskies, Faribault Lakers, Prior Lake Mudcats, New London-Spicer Twins, Plato Blue Jays, Fergus Falls Hurricanes.

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