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Shafter Baseball seniors balance regional playoffs, graduation

Shafter Baseball seniors balance regional playoffs, graduation
Posted at 6:10 PM, May 29, 2024

SHAFTER, Calif. (KERO) — Over the last week, the Shafter High Baseball team has broken school records and now the team's seniors will add another accomplishment on Wednesday night: graduation.

  • As the Shafter Generals' baseball team prepares for its first-ever home regional playoff game, the team's seniors are also preparing to don caps and gowns to stride across the stage and receive their diplomas.
  • 23ABC spoke with the bulk of the Generals' seniors and while many things were said, one theme stuck out: these seniors are excited to get the chance to not only make personal history with their graduation but try to continue to make school history and keep their playoff dreams alive.
  • The Shafter Generals will host the Chavez Titans in the semi-finals of the Div. V Regional Playoffs in Shafter. First pitch is slated for 4 p.m.


For the first time in nearly a decade, the Shafter High Baseball team has made history by winning a valley title and then the school's first-ever state baseball playoff victory, now these seniors have another accomplishment to attend to that being graduation.

Wednesday night, Shafter High School Seniors turn into Shafter High Alumni, but for these baseball players, their school year is far from done according to them.

Thursday afternoon the Generals will host the semi-final round of the Division V South state playoffs against a familiar foe in Cesar Chavez High School in Delano.

For Jesus Paez, it’s been hard to take a step back and relish the moment, but he’s looking forward to the opportunity to keep rolling full steam ahead and keep making school history.

“It’s really there’s no words for that. It will be a big accomplishment for this school. It’s never been done before so being the first team to be able to do something like that would be huge,” said Paez.

But as they shape up for Thursday afternoon, their opponent in the Chavez Titans is coming in equally as strong riding a double-digit win streak.

“We’re on a 12-game win streak right now, and it’s literally keep playing as hard as you guys can. 110%. Stay focused and keep on grinding,” said Scott Neal, Chavez Head Baseball Coach.

But with their season on the line, the Generals have little interest in saying die, but on Thursday night if their high school career comes to a close, they feel that they’ve given it their all through and through.

“I love all of these boys. Some of us have been playing since we were little on a travel ball and rec ball at the Shafter rec. It feels really good knowing that all of that since we were young played a big part," said Angel Ascencio. "Now, we made history – forever. This town, this high school. Books, pictures, all of the videos – Shafter baseball, you’re going to see each and every single one of us.”

Now while these seniors will get an opportunity to enjoy graduation on Wednesday night, They’ll have to get up bright and early on Thursday to start preparing for their playoff game against Chavez. First pitch on this very diamond is set for 4 p.m.

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