Sedgwick (population 1,695). Salina (population 47,707).


Sedgwick (population 1,695). Salina (population 47,707).

The Sedgwick Cardinals are in their first American Legion State Tournament, and are one win away from their first state title.

The Cardinals downed Hays 13-0 on a Trey Tucker no-hitter in the championship quarterfinals of the Kansas Class A American Legion Baseball State Tournament at Dean Evans Stadium in Salina. In the semifinals, Logan Thompson and Brylie Ware combined on a five-hitter to down the Salina Hawks 7-1. The Hays win was shortened to four innings on the 10-run rule.

In 17 innings of state tournament play, Sedgwick pitchers have struck out 31 batters.

“That’s a solid team,” Sedgwick manager Shawn Tucker said of Salina. “That’s one of the better teams we played. ... Getting the early lead has been a key for us. That enables us to relax.”

Salina falls to 38-4. Sedgwick improves to 21-8. Salina is a long-time Legion mainstay. Sedgwick is in its first season as a Legion team.

“They’re not afraid to step up and play,” Shawn Tucker said. “Most of these guys have played JV or varsity in high school. They all came from the same program. (Sedgwick High School coach) Doug Mabry has done a great job with this team. My job is just to carry on with them, so they’ll be ready in the spring. They jelled at the right time. Here we are.”

Thompson went four innings for his second win of the state tournament. Thompson allowed two hits with one run, two walks and seven strikeouts. Thompson has 20 strikeouts for the tournament. Brylie Ware finished the game for the save, allowing three hits with no walks and three strikeouts.

Thompson had one day’s rest before pitching Thursday.

“That’s been his MO all season,” Shawn Tucker said. “He’s been a workhorse. He was the same way in high school. Brylie is one of our youngest players, but probably one of our most seasoned. He’s played in national tournaments. We brought him in after his club team was over. He closes out games, and that’s exactly why we brought him over.”

Ware was three for three hitting with two RBIs. Tucker also had two RBIs.

Geraldo Santiago went two for three for Salina. Blake Jones took the loss for Salina, striking out four batters in two innings. Cameron Weishaar went 3 2-3 innings, allowing three unearned runs on one hit with five walks and seven strikeouts. Robert James finished the game, striking out three of the four batters he faced.

The Cardinals took a 4-0 lead in the first two innings, aided by six hits, an error and a walk. Salina’s first batter of the second inning drew a single. After the next pitch, the stadium was cleared due to lightning, followed by an 85 minute weather delay.

When play resumed, Salina drew another walk. A run scored on a wild pitch, but two strikeouts and a pop fly ended the inning.

With bases loaded and two outs in the top of the sixth, a misplayed ground ball led to a Cardinal run. Tucker then drew a walk with two runs scoring when the ball got away from the catcher.

The leadoff batter for Salina reached on a single in the bottom of the seventh, but was picked off by Ware. After another single, a strikeout

After a six-hour delay, followed by an 11-hour postponement, Trey Tucker tossed a no-hitter for the Cardinals. He walked two batters, the only two baserunners for Hays, and struck out eight.

“It was awesome,” Trey Tucker said. “(Getting the early lead) took a lot of pressure off me. My curveball was really getting in there. My circle change, I was striking out a lot of people with my circle change.”

Sedgwick scored 11 runs in the first inning on seven hits with four walks and three hit batters. The first 10 batters reached base and scored in the inning. Brylie Ware had two doubles in the inning, driving in four runs. Tyler Jacobs had two hits in the inning, including a three-run double.

Kade Parker lasted just six batters for Hays, taking the loss. Ryan Engle finished the game.

The Cardinals next play at 10 a.m. Saturday in the championship game.

“We just have to keep pitching well and hit the ball,” Shawn Tucker said. “We have to be aggressive on the basepaths. We have to be smart. As always, pitching is the key to any program. ... We have five or six pitchers that we can rely on.”