The Arizona Interscholastic Association has released its most recent power point rankings and both the Payson High baseball and softball teams are top-5 rated in Division III.
The Longhorn diamond men, however, are nowhere to be found in a state top-10 rankings compiled by Zach Buchanan of AzCentral Sports.
With a 13-5 record, the Horns are having a stellar year, but apparently the credentials are not enough to earn PHS a spot among the division’s finest. River Valley (18-1-1) is ranked No. 1 just ahead of second rated Mingus (13-5-1). Fountain Hills (20-3), a pitching-rich team that has beaten Payson twice this season, is sitting third.
Show Low with its 14-4 credentials is fourth – the only small town high country team ranked among the top 10.
In power point rankings, however, Payson is faring much better than in the state poll, sitting fifth behind top ranked River Valley, second rated Scottsdale Christian, third place Fountain Hills and fourth seeded Mingus.
In power point rankings, Payson is 8-2 because tournament games do not count and the Longhorns have played in two invitationals - Fountain Hills and Estrella Foothills.
The Lady Longhorns, who are 15-4 overall, but 8-0 in power point calculations, are ranked fourth behind No. 1 Winslow, No. 2 Benson and No. 3 Empire.
The top-four ranked teams, as well as No. 5 Window Rock, are undefeated.
The Lady Horns were scheduled to host Show Low April 8 and a win over the Cougars would certainly have moved PHS up in the rankings.
The clash, however, was postponed due to inclement weather and will be replayed April 17 in Payson.
The team travels today, April 12, to Fountain Hills. Game time is 4 p.m.
McMullen moves up
Individually in baseball, Nate McMullen is now tied for second place in the race for the home run championship. McMullen and Fountain Hill’s Andrew Bryniarski have both slugged six home runs.
Show Low’s Zach Winn leads with eight home runs.
McMullen slugged a pair of his home runs in a 6-4 loss to BR and another in a 17-5 win over Wickenburg in the Estrella Foothills tournament April 4 to 6 at EFHS.
At the conclusion of the invitational, coaches selected McMullen to the All-Tournament team that also included teammate Gunner Goodman.
In softball, Lady Longhorn pitching ace Arianna Paulson is turning in another banner year and could be ranked among the division’s best in ERA and wins. But because statistics are not being recorded on either MaxPreps or Game Changer, it’s difficult to see how she ranks with other pitchers around the state.