High school baseball insider: Huntley's Matt Rodriguez is athlete of the week; power rankings; what to watch

Matt Rodriguez
Matt Rodriguez

Athlete of the Week

Matt Rodriguez, Huntley, sr., 1B

Rodriguez hit three homers in five games as the Red Raiders went 4-1 to sew up back-to-back Fox Valley Conference championships.

Rodriguez was 7 for 16 and knocked in 11 runs in five games. He homered in Friday’s 8-6 loss to Prairie Ridge and in Saturday’s 10-4 win over Crystal Lake South. He also homered and drove in four in a 14-4 win over Dundee-Crown.

Rodriguez had one RBI apiece in two other games, 9-1 and 5-4 wins against Prairie Ridge.

Northwest Herald Power Rankings

1. Huntley (27-6): The Red Raiders took two of three games from Prairie Ridge, then beat Crystal Lake South to claim back-to-back Fox Valley Conference titles.

2. McHenry (24-10): The Warriors swept Hampshire to keep the pressure on Huntley until the end, but wound up one game short of the Red Raiders in the FVC standings.

3. Prairie Ridge (18-13): The Wolves have played their best ball heading into the postseason and will play in Class 3A for the first time since 2012. Prairie Ridge is the largest 3A school in the tournament.

4. Jacobs (18-12-1): The Golden Eagles were a factor through most of the FVC race and hope to hang around in the postseason.

5. Richmond-Burton (19-11): The Rockets won the Kishwaukee River Conference and have won 12 of their last 13 games. Pitchers Jake Rosing and Luke Uhwat are a formidable 1-2 punch atop the rotation.

What to Watch

Class 3A Vernon Hills Regional: Richmond-Burton is the No. 7 seed and faces No. 9 Vernon Hills at 3 p.m. Thursday.

Class 3A Lakes Regional: No. 5 Prairie Ridge plays No. 12 Marian Central at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

Class 4A Cary-Grove Regional: No. 2 McHenry is the highest-seeded local team and trying to repeat as a regional champion.

Class 4A Belvidere North Regional: No. 1 Huntley, the FVC champion, is trying for back-to-back regional titles.

Class 4A Jacobs Regional: Barrington is the top seed, while No. 4 Jacobs is the highest-seeded local team.

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