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SBLive Super 7 Arkansas baseball rankings: State champions rise to the top

Check out the special SBLive Super 15 overall rankings.

By Kevin Bohannon | Photo by Tommy Land 

The high school baseball season is like Christmas. There are months of anticipation and preparation, then it is over in the blink of an eye and only some people ended up getting jewelry. 

We saw many outstanding performances this season, and we also saw teams establish their dominance and never look back. Kudos to all the state champions. 

We have been honored to cover each team in the state this season and look forward to an even bigger 2023. For the first time this year, we present the SBLive Super 15 overall rankings, recognizing the top 15 teams in the state. Teams were selected on overall body of work combined with how they finished the season.

SBLive Super 15 Overall  

1. Marion 30-5

2. Harding Academy 31-3

3. Conway 19-9

4. Van Buren 26-6

5. Bentonville 23-11

6. Springdale Har-Ber 25-8

7. Harrison 22-12

8. Valley View 29-7

9. Rogers 24-6

10. LR Catholic 21-7

11. Jonesboro 24-8-1

12. Sheridan 21-11

13. Rogers Heritage 19-13

14. Huntsville 24-8

15. Batesville 21-8

SBLive Class 6A Super 7  

1. Conway 19-9

2. Bentonville 23-11

3. Springdale Har-Ber 25-8

4. Rogers Heritage 19-13

5. Rogers 24-6

6. LR Catholic 21-7

7. FS Southside 20-11

Analysis: Conway got the big lead and held on to capture the third state title in school history. They did it with a lot of underclassmen as well, so we expect them to be in the mix in 2023. Bentonville never gave up and has talent returning next season. Cabot will be a contender and 6A will have to deal with a very good Jonesboro team as well. Fayetteville was young and returns one of the top players in the state in Landon Schaeffer while FS Southside will look to make it back-to-back state tournament appearances. Har-Ber loses Copper Dossett to the University of Arkansas, but Ross Felder is back so expect the Wildcats to contend once again.

SBLive Class 5A Super 7  

1. Marion 30-5

2. Van Buren 26-6

3. Sheridan 21-11

4. Batesville 21-8

5. Jonesboro 24-8-1

6. Benton 22-10

7. Sylvan Hills 21-11

Analysis: Marion stopped the defending champs in their tracks and never looked back. The Patriots ended the season on a 17-game winning streak and will be back for more in 2023. The Pointers had a great two-year run and will miss Gilreath, Gattis and Brady but Van Buren head coach Luke Weatherford has an established program now and the kids know how to win. Sheridan returns plenty of talent for another title run as does Benton. Batesville loses one of the productive pitchers in school history in Gage Wood, but the Mark Brissey era take the next step. Sylvan Hills will be a fancy early pick as title contender along with LR Christian. Greene County Tech will be a year older and wont have to deal with Jonesboro.

SBLive Class 4A Super 7  

1. Harrison 22-12

2. Valley View 29-7

3. Huntsville 24-8

4. Shiloh Christian 17-13

5. Lonoke 29-6

6. Arkadelphia 18-5

7. Pulaski Academy 22-10-1

Analysis: Harrison pulled off the improbable and did it in style. Their high-flying offense led by Junior Beck Jones won the championship game on a sac fly from senior Cy Madden. Dylan Block competed on the mound and Goblins head coach Matt Rodden kept the Goblins rolling into 2023. Lonoke will be the odds-on favorite with the trio of Eaves, Ingle and Sullivan back. Pulaski Academy will be a threat with Busby and company as well. We will see if Shiloh Christian stays in 4A but my hunch is they get bumped up with the new equitable balance rule. Nashville started a lot of sophomores but what will life be like without Kyle Slayton in the dugout. Morrilton and Arkadelphia will once again challenge for conference titles and could make a run at state. Class 4A will continue to be wild and wacky in 2023.

SBLive Class 3A Super 7  

1. Harding Academy 31-3

2. Ashdown 26-7

3. Paris 20-5

4. Elkins 21-9

5. Haskell Harmony Grove 17-12

6. Prescott 15-9

7. Rose Bud 20-11

Analysis: Ashdown gave Harding Academy all they wanted and then some. In the end, the champs proved resilient and ended the season on a remarkable 27-game winning streak. Senior Gavin Alveti was named MVP and will get consideration for every major player of the year award in my opinion. He was the leader the Wildcats needed as they dealt with multiple injuries throughout the season. While this may have been HA head coach Shane Fullerton’s best team, this was also his best coaching job. Elkins will be a contender under Hunter Corbell. He demands accountability and that goes a long way in the postseason. Rose Bud will have help for Russ Martin and the other underclassmen. Ashdown had a great run and will return some talent.

SBLive Class 2A Super 7  

1. Woodlawn 27-6

2. Bigelow 15-9

3. Buffalo Island Central 20-3

4. McCrory 24-6-1

5. Melbourne 21-6

6. Horatio 20-11-1

7. Rector 18-8

Analysis: Cale Edmonds had Tommy John surgery on his non-throwing arm then proceeded to win a second straight Class 2A State Championship MVP with his complete game over Bigelow. He will do big things for Crowder (Mo.) College next season. Bigelow returns Carter Alexander and Beau Billeck. Horatio has some key players returning and BIC will look to solve the Woodlawn mystery. Who can challenge the teams from south Arkansas next year? Time will tell.

SBLive Class 1A Super 7  

1. Taylor 19-5-2

2. Nemo Vista 19-10

3. Ouachita 25-8

4. Mount Ida 18-6

5. West Side 22-5

6. Izard County 20-8

7. Norfork 22-7

Analysis: Taylor head coach Brian Fowler is one of the best coaches in Arkansas and the Tigers are fortunate to have him as their head coach. I think the Tigers make another run next season, but regional foe Ouachita returns most of their pitching and offense in 2023 so the title may once again go through south Arkansas. Can Region 2 recover from failing to get a team in the semi-finals for the first time in what seems like forever? I would bet the farm that Norfork, West Side, Izard County and Viola are in the conversation next season. Mount Ida will return some key players in 2023 so the Lions could roar once again.