South and Central qualify for State Baseball Tournament

A pair of plucky underdogs from Salina have made waves state-wide over the last two days, clinching spots in the 2024 5A State Baseball Tournament in Wichita next week.


Salina Central, a youthful team, has struggled for portions of the season up against a challenging Ark Valley Chisholm Trail League schedule, but it appears that schedule prepared them to play their best baseball when it mattered most. The Mustangs entered the Sub-State Playoffs as the final team in the field of the West Bracket, the #16 seed. Taking on the #1 seed Maize South, the Mustangs played without question their best game of the season, scoring 12 runs on 6 hits and a jarring 12 walks. Pulling off the massive upset, the Mustangs were then rewarded by facing off with another AVCTL foe in Hutchinson, a team Central had beaten once already on the year.

The Mustangs saw a much different style of game in that Sub-State Title Game, a low-scoring affair, seeing a 1-1 tie taken into the 6th inning. The Mustangs would scratch across two runs in that 6th inning to take a 3-1 lead, but Hutchinson would battle back, scoring a run to make it 3-2. Brody Farthing, as he had all game, continued pushing things along on the mound, pitching a scoreless seventh inning to clinch the win and send the Mustangs to Wichita. Central now sports a 9-18 record into the State Tournament.

Salina Central will be looking for their first ever State Baseball Title next week.


If you thought that’s where the madness stops, you’re wrong.



Salina South traveled to the Andover Central bracket Wednesday, as the #11 seed. But the Cougars were confident in their placement, matching up against a Great Bend team who South had beaten previously in the season in the opening round. The Cougars took a 4-2 lead into the bottom of the 7th, but the Panthers would rally to tie the game at 4 and force extra innings. From there, neither team would crack for quite some time. That is, until the 7th inning, when the Cougars got a runner on base by way of a Great Bend error. Then, a sacrifice bunt by Kolton Herbel would advance the runner to third base, and a Brady Howard single would give South a 5-4 lead.

Howard would continue into the bottom of the 11th as South’s pitcher, forcing a ground out and a pair of pop outs to clinch the Cougars’ bid at State. South will take a 15-13 record into the State Tournament next week.

Salina South will look to continue their run and secure their first State Baseball Title since 1993.

As of Thursday, seven of the eight spots in the 5A State Tournament have been decided, including; Salina South, Salina Central, Goddard-Eisenhower, Bishop Carroll, Shawnee Heights, Spring Hill, and Saint Thomas Aquinas.

The 5A State Tournament will be hosted at Wichita State University’s Eck Stadium beginning Thursday, May 23rd. Brackets will be released Friday morning by KSHSAA.