PREP NOTEBOOK: Local playoff teams battling weather in pivotal final week of the regular season

Apr. 9—Mother Nature couldn't stay down for long. Bad weather could be rolling in on one of the most important weeks of the baseball season.

This week is the final week of the regular season. There may be rain in the forecast for multiple days this week, but with playoffs set to start next week, games will have to get played at some point.

There's plenty at stake this week as area championships and playoff spots for several local teams will be decided. Only two teams from an area advance to the playoffs.

Hartselle will take on rival Cullman in Class 6A, Area 14 play, The Tigers have already achieved a playoff spot, but a win over Cullman would give them their third straight area title. Hartselle hasn't lost an area game since 2021.

Probably the more important Class 6A, Area 14 series will take place between Decatur and Muscle Shoals.

Decatur may have gotten swept last week by Hartselle, but the Red Raiders still hold a series win over Cullman. A series win for Decatur against Muscle Shoals would earn the Red Raiders their first playoff berth since 2017.

In Class 4A, Priceville and West Morgan are both vying for one of Area 12's playoff spots.

Priceville lost its first area series to Haleyville in three games, but rebounded to defeat West Morgan in three games. West Morgan has a series win over East Lawrence.

Priceville takes on East Lawrence, who's winless in area play, this week, while West Morgan will play Haleyville.

A win for Priceville and a loss for West Morgan would put the Bulldogs in the playoffs and leave West Morgan out and vice versa. A win by both teams would set up a three way tie and leave the two spots to tiebreakers.

Here's where other local teams stand in the playoff hunt:

—In Class 3A, Area 14, Decatur Heritage and Danville play this week. Decatur holds a series sweep over Vinemont, while Danville was swept by Vinemont. A win for Decatur Heritage will lead the Eagles to an area championship.

—In Class 2A, Area 14 Hatton sits at the top with series wins over Lindsay Lane, Tanner and Falkville. Hatton takes on Whitesburg Christian this week, which has defeated Falkville and Tanner, but lost to Lindsay Lane. Lindsay Lane takes on Falkville.

—Athens has secured the Class 6A, Area 15 title with wins over Columbia and Mae Jemison.

—Athens Bible clinched a playoff spot in Class 1A, Area 15 last week with a win over Woodville. The Trojans play Skyline this week to decide the area championship.

—West Limestone plays Rogers this week to decide the last playoff spot for Class 4A, Area 16.

—In Class 5A, Area 16, East Limestone holds an edge over Ardmore with both sitting behind Madison Academy. East Limestone plays Madison Academy this week and Ardmore plays Brewer.

—In 7A, Austin has two series left against James Clemens and Florence, likely needing to win both to reach the postseason. 7A playoffs start in two weeks. or 256-340-2395. Twitter @CalebSuggs2