NEPA Sports Nation

Hazleton Area, Riverside No. 1

Hazleton Area and Riverside, the top teams in the final rankings of the 2021 season, are also the top teams in the first Riverfront Sports Super Six Baseball Power Rankings of District 2 teams this season.

Both teams are defending division and district championship who currently lead their divisions.

Hazleton Area is No. 1 in the Big School rankings for Class 6A, 5A and 4A teams.

Riverside leads the Small School rankings for 3A, 2A and A teams.

Five of the Big School teams in last season’s final Super Six are in the first rankings this year.

Wallenpaupack is second, followed by Wyoming Area, North Pocono, Abington Heights and rankings newcomer Pittston Area.

The top two are the same as the final 2021 rankings in the Small Schools with Lake-Lehman again following Riverside.

Scranton Prep is third, followed by Old Forge, Holy Cross and Nanticoke.

Hazleton Area’s only loss is to Lansdale North Penn, the same team that ruined its perfect record during the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association Class 6A state tournament last season.

The defending Wyoming Valley Conference Division 1 and District 2-4 Class 6A Subregional champion Cougars are 4-1. They have outscored four District 2 opponents by a total of 69-11.

Unbeatens Wallenpaupack and Wyoming Area occupy the next two spots in the rankings.

Wallenpaupack is 5-0, leading Lackawanna League Division 2 and outscoring opponents, 51-14.

Wyoming Area is 5-0, by a total margin of 56-14, and coming off a season when it rolled to its first District 2 title and kept going all the way to the state Class 4A championship game.

North Pocono, the defending Lackawanna Division 2 champ, is fourth. The Trojans are 7-1, losing only to Wallenpaupack, 7-5. They have outscored opponents, 74-24.

Abington Heights, the second-ranked team to end last season, opens in the fifth spot. The Comets are defending champions of Lackawanna Division 1 and the District 2-4 Class 5A Subregional. They are 4-1 with a 5-4 loss to Scranton.

Pittston Area’s pitching staff has been roughed up in the last two games to fall from 4-0 to 4-2. The Patriots’ start included a win over Dallas, the No. 5 team at the end of last season.

Riverside is a combined 30-2 in the last two seasons without a loss inside District 2. The Vikings, state Class 2A semifinalists last season, won Lackawanna Division 3 and District 2 Class 2A titles last season. They are 7-1 by a combined margin of 73-13 this season.

Lake-Lehman, another 2021 state semifinalist, is 5-1. The Black Knights won WVC Division 2 last season and lead it this season. They are also defending District 2 Class 3A champions.

Scranton Prep used a late-season push to finish sixth in the 2021 rankings by making the district final and state quarterfinals in Class 3A despite a losing record from playing all larger schools during the regular season. The Cavaliers are 3-2 overall and leading Lackawanna Division 1 to grab the third ranking.

Old Forge, Holy Cross and Nanticoke are fourth, fifth and sixth to replace Lakeland, Western Wayne and Holy Redeemer, which were third, fourth and fifth in the final 2021 rankings, but are unranked to begin this season. Old Forge was a 2021 Class 3A district finalist.

The full baseball rankings, with last year’s final rankings, plus 2021 and current records:


Big Schools

RankTeam2021 Ranking2021 Record2022 Record
1Hazleton Area122-14-1
3Wyoming Area414-75-0
4North Pocono316-47-1
5Abington Heights214-74-1
6Pittston AreaNR5-124-2

Small Schools

RankTeam2021 Ranking2021 Record2022 Record
3Scranton Prep67-133-2
4Old ForgeNR 9-125-2
5Holy CrossNR4-123-2

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