Baseball, softball teams eye new area lineups
Several local baseball and softball teams will look at new area lineups for the next two years under the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s realignment.
None of the five schools in the Hartselle Enquirer’s coverage area will be changing classifications for the 2011 and 2012 seasons, but there will be some interesting changes in area alignments.
The biggest change locally will be the reuniting of rivals Hartselle and Brewer on the baseball and softball fields this season. The two schools will be joined in Class 5A’s Area 13 lineup by Cullman and West Point.
From a baseball standpoint, the area will be one of the toughest in the state with two of the state’s premier programs in Hartselle and Cullman.
The two programs have combined to win six of the last 12 state championships in Class 5A.
The Tigers, who won the title last in 2009, lost to Spanish Fort in the state championship series in Montgomery last month.
Hartselle’s softball team competed in a tough area last year that featured Russellville, Athens and Muscle Shoals.
The Lady Tigers have reached the state tournament in Class 5A the last three seasons.
The move to a different area for the next two seasons means the Lady Tigers won’t match up with Athens, the defending Class 5A state champion, until the regional tournament.
Priceville will compete in Class 4A’s Area 13 again next spring. But the area will now feature East Lawrence, Fairview, Good Hope and Priceville.
Gone are lengthy trips to Columbia and Douglas.
Both Priceville teams should be able to make a strong run at area titles in the spring.
In Class 3A, Danville will move to Area 15 to join Clements, Elkmont and West Morgan.
That means Danville will now avoid brutal road trips to Hamilton, Winfield and Carbon Hill next spring.
Falkville will be in Class 3A’s Area 15 lineup next season – joined by Cleveland, Tanner and Westminster Christian.
Falkville beat Westminster in the loser’s bracket of the North Regional softball tourament this spring. Now the two will meet in the regular season.
Sports editor Todd Thompson can be reached at 773-6566 or at firstname.lastname@example.org