By EARL WATT
• Leader & Times
With only two days remaining in the NBC World Series, the Jayhawk League is still represented.
The Hays Larks are one game away from the title game after a strong run through the Championship Week bracket.
All four remaining teams each have one loss, and the tournament is down to a single elimination bracket.
The Larks have played all the teams that remain in the tournament and have victories over the Santa Barbara Foresters (9-7) and the defending champion Seattle Studs (4-1). The Larks lost to the NJCAA National Team (12-7).
Hays knocked off the Haysville Aviators Thursday, 7-3, to advance to the Final 4.
The Aviators have also shown some interest in becoming a Jayhawk League team.
The Larks have a rematch with the Seattle Studs at 8:30 p.m. today. Prior to that game, the Santa Barbara Foresters will face the NJCAA National Team at 6 p.m.
The two winners will face off in Saturday’s championship.
Should the Larks beat the Studs today, it will guarantee that the Jayhawk League will get four teams into the tournament next year since the bracketing allows for three teams already, and the top two teams of the previous year’s tournament also get automatic bids.
The Jayhawk League teams that qualified this year have combined for a 9-7 record so far.
The fourth-place Jayhawk League team, the El Dorado Broncos, failed to win a game at the World Series with an 0-2 performance.
The Derby Twins put together an impressive run in the First Week bracket, but fell short of advancing with a 4-2 record.
The 2014 Jayhawk League champions, the Wellington Heat, opened the tournament with a 10-0 win over Prairie Gravel but lost to the NJCAA National Team, 6-2 the next day. Wellington was eliminated with a 7-6 loss to the San Diego Waves and finished 1-2 at the tournament.
Hays remained alive through today with a 4-1 run through the Championship Week bracket.
Hays has finished second at the NBC World Series four times (1995, 2000, 2001 and 2007).
The Larks have never won the NBC World Series.