Nearing the postseason of high school football, and two area teams have landed in the Prep Zone Power Poll. The Buchholz Bobcats, upset #7 Fleming Island 24-21 last Friday night and vaulted into the #15 position. They stand at 4-1 on the season and face the Creekside Knights tonight in St. John’s. The Suwannee Bulldogs, coming off three straight shutouts, entered the top 20 at #17. Also receiving votes from the region are the Keystone Heights Indians, Hawthorne Hornets, and the Newberry Panthers.
The Indians travel to Interlachen to play the Rams tonight, while the Panthers go on the road to face the Ft. White Indians.
Bartram Trail (6-1) rallied in the fourth quarter past then-#5 Oakleaf (Orange Park), 30-27, at home. That allowed the Bears to once again receive all nine first-place votes to remain the unanimous #1 team again in the regional all-classification rankings.
It was the fourth win for Bartram Trail over a team that was ranked at the time, following victories earlier this year over Creekside (St. Johns), St. Augustine, and Ponte Vedra.
The Bears’ only loss so far in 2020 was to American Heritage (Plantation), which was ranked #20 nationally by Max Preps at the time they played them.
Bartram Trail had to work hard against Oakleaf, trailing most of the game before rallying in the fourth quarter to beat the Knights by a late score for the second year in a row.
With the loss, Oakleaf (4-3) dropped into a tie for 8th this week with Baker Count (Glen St. Mary).
Bolles (Jacksonville) remains 2nd as the Bulldogs (6-1) struggled for the first half before pulling away for a 33-19 win at University Christian (Jacksonville).
The ‘Dogs take the week off before closing their regular season next Thursday at #12 Mainland (Daytona Beach).
Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) remained red-hot as they followed up their upset of nationally-ranked American Heritage the week before in South Florida by getting another big road win last week closer to home.
The Conquerors (5-1), who won 3-0 at American Heritage, won another defensive slugfest 14-6 at #10 Robert E. Lee (Jacksonville), handing the Generals (4-1) their first loss of the season.
Trinity Christian stays put at #3 while Lee drops two spots from the previous poll after the setback.
Madison County moves up two spots to 4th as they put together one of their best efforts of this season with a 42-7 thumping on the road of Taylor County (Perry).
The Cowboys (7-1) travel to 8A Flagler Palm Coast this week in a game scheduled as a late addition earlier this week.
Rounding out the top five is Dunnellon.
The Tigers (4-0) move up five slots after knocking off then-#4 Vanguard (Ocala), 30-28, on a field goal on the final play of the game. This is the second year in a row Dunnellon has beaten their Marion County rival.
With the loss Vanguard (3-1) falls five spots to 9th.
Clay (Green Cove Springs) starts off the second five.
The Blue Devils (6-0) also are up five spaces as they rolled past Clay County foe Middleburg 56-28 and travel to another county rival in 6-1 Ridgeview (Orange Park) this Friday.
Baker County, which hosts 1-5 Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) this week, is up into a tie for 7th with Oakleaf as the Wildcats (6-1) bounced back from a loss to Bolles the previous week by taking care of West Nassau (Callahan), 28-12, on the road.
With the loss Ponte Vedra (5-2) drops out as did Sandalwood (Jacksonville). The Saints (5-1), who were 12th previously, drop out after suffering their first loss of the season, 29-14, at Mandarin (Jacksonville).
Also falling out was Newberry, which was in a tie for 20th but they dropped out after their game at Santa Fe (Alachua) was postponed due to COVID-19.
The Prep Zone Power Poll ranks the top 20 high school football, volleyball, basketball, baseball & softball teams (regardless of FHSAA classification) across 26 counties in North Florida (Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Citrus, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Duval, Flagler, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Hernando, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lake, Levy, Madison, Marion, Nassau, Putnam, Sumter, St. Johns, Suwannee, Taylor, Union & Volusia counties). It is voted on weekly by sportswriters and sportscasters and it is powered by Anytime Fitness of Gainesville.
THE PREP ZONE POWER POLL – 2020 FOOTBALL POLL #8
(School, followed by classification, first-place votes, current record, and total voting points)
1. Bartram Trail (St. Johns) (8A) (9) (6-1) – 180
2. Bolles (Jacksonville) (4A) (6-1) – 168
3. Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) (3A) (5-1) – 161
4. Madison County (1A) (7-1) – 143
5. Dunnellon (5A) (4-0) – 139
6. Clay (Green Cove Springs) (5A) (6-0) – 138
7T. Baker County (Glen St. Mary) (5A) (6-1) – 122
7T. Oakleaf (Orange Park) (8A) (4-3) – 122
9. Vanguard (Ocala) (5A) (3-1) – 105
10. Robert E. Lee (Jacksonville) (6A) (4-1) – 94
11. Creekside (St. Johns) (7A) (4-2) – 66
12. Mainland (Daytona Beach) (6A) (4-1) – 63
13. The Villages (4A) (4-0) – 61
14. Fleming Island (Orange Park) (7A) (5-2) – 59
15. Buchholz (Gainesville) (7A) (4-1) – 56
16. Baldwin (3A) (6-0) – 33
17. Suwannee (Live Oak) (5A) (6-2) – 27
18. Nature Coast Tech (Brooksville) (5A) (5-0) – 26
19. Fletcher (Neptune Beach) (7A) (4-1) – 23
20. DeLand (8A) (2-1) – 19
Also receiving votes: Lake Minneola (6A) (4-1) – 18; Newberry (1A) (6-1) – 17; Wildwood (1A) (7-0) – 13; Sandalwood (Jacksonville) (8A) (5-1) – 12; Hilliard (1A) (6-0) – 7; St. Augustine (6A) (4-2) – 7; Hawthorne (1A) (5-1) – 4; Keystone Heights (4A) (5-1) – 3; Trinity Catholic (Ocala) (3A) (3-3) – 2; West Port (Ocala) (8A) (4-1) – 2.