The first season on record for El Dorado High School was highly successful. In fact, 1901-1902 is the only undefeated season in school records at 3-0. All were one run wins, 3-2 over Potwin, 10-9 over Brumback Academy and 8-7 against the El Dorado Athletic Club. Team members were Cliff Mabie (C), Mabie (CF), Harry Tolle (RF), Benson (P), Dean Stevenson (SS), Edward Crook (1B), Hayward Morrison (2B) and Logan Thayer (3B).
There are no records for the following school year, but in 1903-1904, El Dorado went 2-1-1. The Wildcats swept Eureka and posted one win and one tie with Douglass. It is not known whether the tie was called on account of weather or darkness since there were no lighted fields in those days.
It is known that El Dorado had a team from 1931-1935, but unknown what other years that El Dorado fielded a team until Jim McDonald resurrected the program in the 1944. According to the 1935 school yearbook, the Wildcats went 11-2 in 1935 and, in a change from recent practices, the players were awarded varsity letters. The only losses were to Wichita East, but the Cats also beat East twice as well as sweeping a pair from Wichita North.
Kansas had a State High School Tournament from 1945-1947 but dropped it in 1948. Jim McDonald persuaded the Kansas High School Activities Association to reinstate the State Tournament in 1949 and hold it in El Dorado. It was held here from 1949-1968, 1970-1974, 1976 and 1978-1995.
The Wildcats made their first State Tournament appearance in 1950 and would become a fixture in the tournament in that decade. The only year that El Dorado did not qualify for State was 1956. The first year, EHS lost in the opening round to Topeka High 1-0. In 1951, El Dorado progressed to the semi-finals beating KC Wyandotte 6-3 before falling to Wichita East 10-1.
The 1952 team is enshrined in the Hall of Fame and made it to the Championship Game, losing to Wichita North 7-5. In 1953, the Wildcats again made the semi-finals besting Garden City 2-1 in 14 innings before losing to Newton 3-1. The 1954 squad lost a squeaker in the opening round to Dodge City 3-2.
In 1955, El Dorado again advanced to the semi-finals. In the opener, EHS downed Wichita East 1-0 behind the pitching of Lou Talliaferro who struck out 7 and walked 1. This was El Dorado's first win over East since the program was revived in 1944. El Dorado fell to Dodge City in the semi-finals 2-1. Both Dodge City runs scored on errors as Dick Orndorff allowed only 2 hits while striking out 15.
The 1957 squad had the misfortune of facing Kansas City Ward in the opening round with future Major Leaguer Ray Sadecki on the mound. Sadecki fanned 11 Wildcats (8 in a row at one stretch) as Ward won the game 10-2. In 1958, El Dorado would again be matched against KC Ward in the opener and lost 4-2 as Sadecki came on in relief for the win. Ward went on to win the championship with Sadecki getting the win in the Championship Game against defending champ Wichita East.
In 1959, the Wildcats again made it to the semi-finals, beating Dodge City 5-2 before falling to Wichita West 3-0. El Dorado would have to wait 20 years before reaching State again in 1979 when the Wildcats took 3rd place. The 1979 team also has a plaque in the Hall of Fame.
EHS came close to reaching the State Tourney in 1989 losing a close game to eventual State Champion Augusta in the Regional Finals. 1989 was the first year that El Dorado didn't have to compete with the largest schools in the state as the KSHSAA split the 32 largest schools into a separate tournament.
The next year, the Cats claimed their first and, so far, only State Championship. Then in 1991, El Dorado made it to the Championship Game again before losing a close contest to Ark Valley League rival Campus. In 1992, the Wildcats were 24-0 and nationally ranked going into the semi-finals of the State Tournament before suffering their only loss of the season. The Cats recovered to claim another 3rd place trophy.
After El Dorado dropped down to the third largest classification, the Wildcats qualified for one more State Tournament in 2000, losing in the first round to eventual State Champion Wamego.
There have only been 7 head coaches for EHS since baseball was resumed in 1944. The longest tenured and most successful has been Brad Long. Coach Long's teams made 4 State Tournament appearances claiming the school's only State Championship, one runner-up and two 3rd place trophies. In addition, his teams claimed the only league championships in school history with 8 in all. The first 6 came in the always tough Ark Valley League with the last 2 in Division 3 of the Ark Valley-Chisholm Trail League.
Brad stepped down as the skipper of the Cats after 30 seasons following the 2012 campaign. He posted a career record of 324 wins against 299 losses for a .520 winning percentage. Long also served 7 seasons as an assistant coach in between head coaching stints. In his last 4 seasons as head coach, the Wildcats finished as Regional Runner-up 3 times.
The man responsible for resurrecting baseball at El Dorado High School, Jim McDonald coached for 26 seasons with 9 State Tournament appearances. Those State Tournaments resulted in one second place finish and four ties for third place as there was no third place game in those days. Mac's career record was 141-131-1 for a .518 winning percentage.
The coach with the best career winning percentage was Jim Seymour. Seymour only coached for 2 years between McDonald and Long, posting an overall record of 19-11 for a winning percentage of .633.
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