By EARL WATT
• Leader & Times
So far this season the Bee Jays have not had to spend one night in a motel room.
That will change tonight when Liberal travels to El Dorado to face the Broncos in a key three-game series in the Jayhawk League.
After three games in El Dorado and a day off, the Bee Jays will head to Hays for a two-game series with the league-leading Larks.
The Bee Jays had back-to-back days off Wednesday and Thursday, and Hays was able to gain a game on their lead over Liberal by knocking off the Dodge City A’s twice during that time.
The Bee Jays are in third, two games behind the Larks, and the Broncos are only a game behind the Bee Jays.
Perhaps more important than ever, finishing in the top three will be critical in guaranteeing participation in the NBC World Series.
The Broncos and Bee Jays have 10 national championships between them (five each) and both are balancing on the third-fourth positions seven games in to the 34-game league season.
If one of those two teams were to fall below third, it is highly unlikely they would participate in the NBC World Series.
Dodge City, a team that finished in the top 10 a year ago, has yet to win a league game in seven tries despite two one-run losses to league-leading Hays in the past two days.
The only loss the Larks have suffered this season happened at Brent Gould Field when the Bee Jays rallied from a 6-1 deficit and came back to win 7-6.
Since then, Hays has won six in a row, and two of those six were one-run wins.
Wellington is right behind the Larks, trailing by a game. The two face off in a weekend series.
Derby and Dodge City, the fifth and sixth place teams, are also battling head-to-head this weekend as well.
Liberal will return to Brent Gould Field to host Wellington June 21/