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Jacksonville State University Jim Case Stadium is one of two locations to host the 2024 Class 7-A State Baseball Championship when Bob Jones will face Central-Phenix City Tuesday and Wednesday. Photo Contributed

Heavyweight Baseball- Bob Jones To Play For State Championship

MADISON- A heavyweight championship bout is the best comparison that can be made for the upcoming State Championship Series for the Class 7A Baseball title when Bob Jones will tangle with Central-Phenix City.

“You couldn’t ask for a better matchup with No. 1 vs. No. 2 in the state and both of us ranked in the Top 15 nationally,” said Bob Jones head coach Jared Smith.  “I’d be surprised if this series doesn’t go three games with these two teams being so evenly matched.”

The best-of-three series begins on Tuesday at 2:00 p.m. at Choccolocco Park, a 1,200-seat facility located in Oxford. Game two and three, if necessary, will be held on the artificial turf Rudy Abbott Field at the 2,020 capacity Jim Case Stadium on the campus of Jacksonville State University on Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. The Patriots are No. 1 in Alabama and No. 13 nationally according to Perfect Game. The Red Devils come into the finals as No. 2 in the state, but No. 10 on the national scene. The two heavyweights met earlier this season on Feb. 17 as part of the PBR Alabama Kickoff at Hoover High where Bob Jones lost in a close one 2-1.

“Central plays really good defense, throws strikes, and hits for a high average with the ability to hit extra base hits. They are a complete team, but what makes them really tough to beat is they always believe that they will win,” said Smith of the Red Devils. “They are extremely competitive and gritty, which makes them very tough to beat. They are also used to winning as this is their third straight state championship appearance.”

For Bob Jones (42-12), making their second appearance in the finals in the last five years, they went three games in the semi-finals against its crosstown rival James Clemens (33-12) in scores of 1-3, 9-1 and 5-4. Central (39-3) swept Auburn (27-12) 11-6 and 10-1 in its semi-final matchup.

“I think everyone has momentum at this point if you are still playing at this point in the season,” added Smith. “Of course, we are coming off a huge series win over our rival James Clemens but we have to turn the page pretty quick because the State Championship will be here before you know it.”

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