LODI -- Mike Glines and Central Catholic will seek a three-peat today when it faces Hughson for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division V baseball title.
The Raiders (25-4), No. 1 in the CalHiSports.com small-school rankings, will clinch a third consecutive state crown should they top Hughson (21-8) at Zupo Field.
Glines coached Central to the mythical D-V title in 2006 and the Raiders won it again last year after CalHiSports.com promoted them to D-IV -- in recognition of the program's success.
The Raiders and Huskies play at 6 p.m., following the D-VI championship at 3 p.m., featuring Mariposa (24-6) and Capital Christian of Sacramento (25-3) -- ranked No. 2 in the state behind Central.
Never miss a local story.
While the section places teams in divisions based on the size of their league, CalHi also considers the size of the school and the strength of its program. Teams that dominate a division, as Central did in D-V, can be moved up.
Central has won state titles four of the last six years, but it needed help last year. It opened the playoffs at No. 3, but the top two teams were upset and the Raiders were promoted to No. 1.
The Raiders have won 16 consecutive games and boast one of the state's top freshmen in Billy Flamion. The center fielder is hitting .461, with 12 doubles five triples, six homers and 41 RBIs.
Central has two hot pitchers available in Hunter Adrian (9-2, 2.06 ERA) and Clay DePauw (7-1, 1.99); Hughson is likely to call on Archie Quay (7-1, 2.11).
DIVISION VI -- Mariposa goes for its second section baseball title in school history when it faces Capital Christian. The Grizzlies (24-6) have won 13 in a row, outscoring their foes 133-26 over that span, and will send David Hawes (12-1) to the mound today.
Capital Christian (25-3) is looking for Nathaniel Giacoma (8-2, 1.01) to throw his fifth consecutive complete game. One of his losses was 2-1 to Golden Sierra, a team Mariposa beat twice last week for a spot in the final.