By Fred Liggett
Post-season play allows everyone to reset their teams and regular season records become forgotten. This year the Class 5, District 13 Girl’s and Boy’s basketball tournament was hosted by Ray-Pec High School. In the five team field was Lee’s Summit, Lee’s Summit North and Lee’s Summit West. The three Lee’s Summit schools were joined by the host Ray-Pec Panthers and Belton Pirates.
The week long tournament began on Monday night with one girls and one boys contest. The girl’s game featured the Lee’s Summit Tigers against Belton. The Tigers came up short in a 41-32 loss. The Tigers ended the season at 1-24 and it was the final game for Senior Claire Lock who scored over 1,000 points in her prep career.
Tuesday night was semi-final night with four games set to be played, two girls then two boys. Lee’s Summit West beat Belton in the first game of the day which was followed by Lee’s Summit North’s win over Ray-Pec 42-40. The Titans and Broncos advanced to Friday night’s final game where the winner will advance to the sectional round of the state playoffs.
The evening saw both boys games be played. In the first one Lee’s Summit West routed Belton 63-33 to advance as expected to Friday’s district final. The final game of the night was the most entertaining at the Ray-Pec gym pitting #2 seed Lee’s Summit North against #3 seed Lee’s Summit. The first half saw several lead changes with the final one taking place with no time on the clock. The Broncos enjoyed a 34-33 lead at the half thanks to two free throws being taken after the clock had run out as a foul was called.
The second half saw a Tigers surge as they outscored the favored Broncos 24-12 in the third quarter to enjoy a 57-46 lead. The fourth quarter featured impressive looking lay ups and long range threes that had the crowd at the edge of their seats. The Tigers withstood a Broncos rally to win 80-73. The Broncos were led by Javaunte Hawkins 27 points, Elijah Farr finished with 22 in his final game as a Bronco. The victorious Tigers were led by sophomore Jaden Moore’s 28 points, Will Eames followed with 15. The Tigers will now play the Titans in the boy’s district championship game.
Ten teams came to Ray-Pec to win a district championship and only four remained to compete for the title. All four came from Lee’s Summit and area sports fans expected a fun Friday final.