By Fred Liggett
When walking around the hallways of Lee’s Summit High school this week and talk comes around to congratulating someone on a conference championship, the reply may be “Which one?” That’s the case with the successful fall sports teams at Lee’s Summit this season as the Tigers soccer team has won a conference championship. The Tigers football team finished the regular season at 6-3 and in a tie for the conference crown.
The Tigers soccer team is seeded number one in the upcoming district tournament thanks to their success in conference action. Lee’s Summit boys soccer coach Dave Wiebenga on his 2018 squad “a great group of players.” “This group has worked hard since June building towards this.” Wiebenga attributes the team success to “I’ve been very fortunate with lots of returners.”
Defensively the team is strong, has two great goalkeepers in Jackson Wells and Kaia Tupinio according to coach Wiebenga. Up next for the Tigers is the district tournament to be hosted by Ray-Pec. The Tigers, the number one seed, play Belton at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday. Also in the four team district is Lee’s Summit West and host Ray-Pec Panthers. The district tournament will then continue on Tuesday, Oct. 30.
Lee’s Summit Football finished 6-3 on the year and thanks to an upset last Friday when Liberty stunned Staley 31-7 won a share of the conference title. The Tigers finished in a tie with Staley with a 5-1 mark in the Suburban Red Conference. Tigers head coach Eric Thomas said it was “kind of a surprise.” “The team didn’t say much about it.” Thomas says the accomplishment, “Is a testament to perseverance by the kids.” Thomas added he thinks the senior group last year showed the same down the stretch giving his current team the feeling to continue that theme this year. Coach Thomas admits 2018 has “had its ups and downs” this season being excited to have this at the end. The Class 6, District 4 playoff games begin on Friday night at Rockhurst High. Game time is set for 7 p.m. With a win, the Tigers would advance to play the winner of the Liberty North/Lee’s Summit West game on Friday, Nov., 2. Thomas says, “We are going to show up.” To win on the road “will take our best effort.” So far the efforts of the teams have been good enough as the conference championships add up at Lee’s Summit High School.