Two area Softball teams looking for State gold
When it comes to KSHSAA State Softball, the two area teams representing the region have two similarities - they're the No. 4 seed in their respective tournament, and they both want to win it all.
Their paths to their state tournaments, however, are a little different.
Both Garden City (19-3) and Holcomb (20-3) have had outstanding seasons, and will begin their march to a state title on Thursday. Each earning a No. 4 seed in their respective draws, they'll have to beat the top seed in their respective tournaments to have a chance at a title.
One thing about the opening round at state - a win guarantees you a chance to play twice more, as a game for 3rd Place awaits those who are unable to get to the title tilt.
Garden City has been consistent at one thing this season - scoring runs. The Lady Buffs were 5th in the state in scoring, averaging just over 10 runs per game, one of six 6A teams to score 10 or more runs per contest. That doesn't include the 29 runs they put up to win their regional pod. They shut out Wichita-South/Wichita-West, 15-0, before surviving a 14-13 scorefest against Wichita-Northwest - who was 3rd in state state in runs per game this season - to advance to state.
Garden City opens their run at state against No. 5 seed Gardner-Edgerton (16-4), who finished atop the 6A East Standings and averages only 3.5 runs allowed per game. That game, scheduled for a 1 pm first-pitch, will be second of the day at the Shawnee Mission District Softball Complex, weather-permitting.
The winners would play twice on Friday - the semifinals will be at 11 am and 1 pm, and the Trophy round (Championship and 3rd place games) would be at 3 pm on two fields.
Holcomb, meanwhile, had to scramble their way to state. The Lady Horns held off Goodland, 12-9, and managed to beat Colby in a 16-15, 10-inning marathon before besting host Scott City, 6-5, to make it to state.
The Lady Horns will open their state run at the Manhattan-Twin Oaks Complex at 7 pm Thursday with fifth-seeded Hoisington/Central Plains (19-4) on Field A. Two field will be utilized for the tournament, and the four teams who advance to Friday's play will all get to play two more games. The semifinals would be played at 11 am, and the Trophy games (Championship and 3rd Place) would take place at 1 pm.
All of this, of course, is weather-permitting.