Prep Baseball Report

NJCAA World Series Preview: Division I

By: Josh Fields
PBR JUCO Scouting Staff

Heading into Grand Junction, the JUCO Wire staff previews how each team secured their spot in the world series as well as looking ahead at their first matchup. Gameplay kicks off at 11 a.m. EST tomorrow, with No. 4-seeded Georgia Highlands taking on No. 7 McLennan and the World Series will run throughout the week.

+ Johnson County (56-10)

Top Prospect(s): C/1B Dagen Brewer, OF Ryker Edwards, INF Jordan Black, RHP Brandon Stone

The Cavaliers earned the No. 1 seed after going 52-11 on the season and only losing one game so far this postseason. An extra inning loss to Hutchinson, following it up by defeating Hutchinson the next day 14-6 and winning the Region 6 and Plains District Championship. Johnson County opens the World Series against Shelton State on Saturday.

+ Northwest Florida State (36-13)

Top Prospect(s): RHP Colin Linder, SS Kendrey Maduro, RHP Mack Estrada, & 3B Colby Jones

After securing the South Atlantic District title, the Raiders earned the No. 2 seed heading into Grand Junction. The Raiders will face Southern Nevada who has been on a hot streak throughout May.

+ Iowa Western (54-8)

Top Prospect(s): RHP Luke Broderick, UTL Evan Saunders, INF AJ Singer, INF Brayden Smith, C/INF Kyle Hvidsten

The Reivers secured a berth to Grand Junction by winning the Midwest District where they would drop the first game to Wabash Valley before defeating McHenry County, John A. Logan and Wabash Valley twice to earn the trip to the world series. The Reivers were awarded the No. 3 seed in the tournament and will face off against Florence-Darlington Tech on Saturday.

+ Georgia Highlands (53-8)

Top Prospect(s): SS Luke Orfi, LHP Michael Sharman

Georgia Highlands swept the Region 17 tournament and then followed it up with an Appalachian District Championship where they defeated Dyersburg State in three games. The Chargers have been one of the more potent offenses in the country this year and will face a challenging opponent in McLennan in round one.

+ Crowder (49-13)

Top Prospect(s): 1B/OF Joey Morton, OF Kolton Reynolds, RHP Ashton Branson

Crowder swept their way through the Region 16 tournament and the South Central District not losing a game so far this postseason. The Roughriders earned the No. 5 seed and will face a tough Blinn squad on Sunday.

+ Blinn (42-16)

Top Prospect(s): INF Tanner Reaves, INF Cade Climie, UTL Connor McGinnis

The Coyotes secured the No. 6 seed heading defeating San Jacinto in the Region and District Championship. Having rebounded from a tough early season schedule, Blinn looks to be playing their best baseball heading into Grand Junction.

+ McLennan (43-17)

Top Prospect(s): RHP Lucas Kelly, RHP Devin Bennett, RHP Nick Greaney, UTL Aidan Kuni

After sweeping the Region 5 and Southwest District Championship, eliminating a top 5 team in the process, McLennan goes into Grand Junction as a battle tested team. The Highlanders have many freshmen leading the way on both sides of the ball and they will be relied on once again throughout the World Series.

+ Florence-Darlington Tech (51-10)

Top Prospect(s): C/1B Rom Kellis, LHP Aydin Palmer

Florence-Darlington Tech earned the No. 8 seed going into Grand Junction after winning over 50 games this year and taking down rival Gaston in the region tournament. The stingers face the No. 1 team on the JUCO Wire and No. 3 seeded Iowa Western to open the tournament.

+ Southern Nevada (51-10)

Top Prospect(s): RHP Hunter Alberini, INF Brady Ballinger, RHP Lucas Boesen

One of the hottest teams heading into the tournament having only lost two games since the start of April. The Coyotes will face a battle tested Northwest Florida team to open the tournament.

+ Shelton State (32-30)

Top Prospect(s): INF/RHP Kyle Morrison, OF Jordan Evans

Another team that hasn’t lost in the postseason through this point. The Buccaneers defeated Southern Union State and Delgado twice to claim the South District Championship. Currently sitting at 43 wins on the year the Buccaneers have had their most successful season since 2021 when they last made it to Grand Junction.