Prep Baseball Report

2024 MSHSAA Playoffs: Class 6, District 5 Preview

By: Diego Solares
Central Region Media Director, Scouting

The 2024 MSHSAA District playoffs are set to start tomorrow, May 10th, for Classes 1-through-4, with the Class 5 and Class 6 bracket kicking off next week. From now until then, teams across the state will compete for an opportunity to capture a District crown and punch their ticket to Sectionals, and ultimately a spot in Ozark. 

Over the next few days, our staff will be previewing each District for Class 5 and Class 6. Here are the Districts we have previewed so far: 

+ Class 6, District 8
+ Class 6, District 7
+ Class 6, District 6

Below you’ll learn more about Class 6, District 5 and its outlook with the playoffs set to start next week.

+ Rock Bridge (26-9) headlines this highly talented District, as the Bruins enter the playoffs as the top seed. They’ve won 26 games this spring and certainly tested themselves throughout the spring, drawing tough opponents on the regular. Climbing as high as second overall on our ‘Large School’ team rankings at one point, Rock Bridge has beaten Nixa three times, Eureka, Southern Boone, Willard, and Blair Oaks thus far into the season. Arguably their toughest test to date will be getting out of this District, but the Bruins are a scrappy, competitive, and well-coached bunch that has a roster capable of doing just that. 

+ You’ll be hard pressed to find a pitching staff in the state as talented and productive as the one that Blue Springs (22-11) boasts. The Wildcats gave up one or less runs in 15 of their 33 games and boast multiple impact type arms - Cole Gibler (2024; Arkansas), Nick Gibler (2024; Central Missouri), and Ronin Vicenti (2024; Johnson County CC) - that can beat anyone on any given day. Their offense has done a formidable job of supporting that dynamic pitching staff, with names like Drew McConnell (2024; Evansville) and Lincoln Stephenson (2024; Central Missouri) continuing to produce at a high rate. Blue Springs won this District last year and have a team that’s more than capable of doing so again. 

+ By their standards, Blue Springs South (18-15) is having somewhat of a down year, but the Jaguars still have a plenty impressive resume and are the three seed in this District. They swept both Lee’s Summit West and Raymore-Peculiar earlier last month, and also have a win over ranked Liberty on their resume. Ashton Nance (2025; Kansas) has blossomed into a true top-of-the-rotation arm, and names like Collin Dobson (2024; Central Missouri), Aidan Howladar (2024; New York), and Grant Hollister (2024; Indiana) anchor the middle of this lineup. 

+ Grain Valley (19-14) fell in the semi-finals of District play last year to Blue Springs South and enter these playoffs as a tough, competitive four seed that neither one of the top seeds will want to face. Dennis Leonard (2025), Ian Kamstra (2024; Crowder JC), Aaron Barr (2025), and Carter Harmsen (2025) are all quality arms that have thrown the ball really well for the Eagles this spring. Kaden Crandall (2025), Brek Sloan (2024; Missouri Southern), and Max Snyder (2025) lead an offense that doesn’t strike out much and puts the pressure on their opposition. 

+ Smith-Cotton (17-15) is the fifth seed in this District. Kendall Hagedorn (2026), Kaden Wiskur (2026), and Cooper Woolery (2026) are all three having strong years at the plate to lead this offense. The Tigers also have a trio of quality arms in Jonathen O’Connell (2024), Brayden Butts (2024), and Woolery. 

+ Hickman (11-20), Battle (8-23), and Central Springfield (13-12) are the final three seeds in this District. 


Host: Battle 

1. Rock Bridge
2. Blue Springs
3. Blue Springs South
4. Grain Valley
5. Smith-Cotton
6. Hickman
7. Battle
8. Central (Springfield)