High School Sports

High School Sports

Firebirds’ offense comes alive in win

Lawrence high’s Anthony Buffalomeat, front, controls a ball against Free State’s Nick Hassig.

Lawrence high’s Anthony Buffalomeat, front, controls a ball against Free State’s Nick Hassig.

February 27, 2010

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Free State boys roll past Lawrence High

Lawrence High got off to a great start and built an 11-point lead, but Free State battled back to win, 62-50. Enlarge video

Chuck Law didn’t exactly toss the whole “defense-wins-championships” ethos out the window Friday night.

But the Free State boys basketball coach was quick to admit following his team’s 62-50 road victory over rival Lawrence High that, sometimes, it takes some good, old-fashioned scoring to win a basketball game.

“I guess we understate the importance of putting the ball in the basket sometimes,” Law said. “You can talk about defense all you want, but you’ve got to get the ball in the hole more times than the other team.”

The Firebirds had little trouble in that regard Friday, finishing 18-of-40 from the field as four players finished with nine or more points, and Free State rolled to its third-highest scoring output of the season.

With the exception of a forgettable first quarter, during which they shot 3-of-13 from the field and looked out of it at times, the Firebirds’ offense thrived, putting up point totals of 19, 17 and 17 in the game’s final three quarters.

“Our gameplan was to attack their zone, find open spots on the floor and hit shots,” said Free State senior Bo Schneider, who scored six of his nine points in the fourth quarter.

It was easy to understand the Firebirds’ early-game nerves, given the level of energy provided by the school’s boisterous student section, which offered up a highly entertaining cheer commentary throughout the evening. They opened the game by revealing a surprisingly large banner that read “You’re just jealous $ can’t buy tradition,” and later showered Evan Manning, son of former NBA standout and current Kansas University men’s basketball assistant Danny Manning, with the following chant: “You’re not Danny (clap clap clap clap clap).”

There was only so much the crowd could do, however, and after its hot first-quarter start, Lawrence High promptly fell apart during the next two quarters.

The Firebirds opened the second quarter on a 10-2 run and outscored LHS by 13 in the second quarter to take a 28-22 advantage into halftime. They followed that with a 14-4 run to open the second half, a stretch that pushed their lead to 16.

The Lions did manage to piece together a bit of a comeback attempt late. A three-point basket by senior Matthew Montes de Oca with 5:37 remaining in the fourth quarter pulled LHS within six, 47-41.

But the Firebirds quickly pushed their advantage back into double digits, converting 12 of 20 free-throw attempts in the fourth quarter to lock up a two-game sweep of LHS this season and improve to 9-11 heading into Thursday’s 7 p.m. Class 6A sub-state matchup with Shawnee Mission West.

Senior Nick Hassig led Free State with 13 points, and forward Ryan Scott added nine points and seven rebounds. Marcus Ray (22 points, 10 rebounds) was the only Lawrence High player to finish in double-figure scoring.

“You’ve got to survive the stretches where you can’t get it going offensively,” said Lawrence High coach Mike Lewis, whose team fell to 4-16. “You’ve got to be able to counter with something, and we had a hard time finding a counter tonight.”

Comments

RibMan 5 years, 6 months ago

The LHS "cheering" section was an embarrassment. It was personal, petty and mean-spirited. The school needs to think seriously about how they portrayed themselves to the city. The immaturity and lack of class was striking.

sportsFan22 5 years, 6 months ago

this game brings out the worst in BOTH student sections. Granted LHS' won the top prize for that last night. But don't kid yourself Ribman.... FS' has been equally "bad" in the past.

My issue is WHY is the LJWorld reporting on that? Seems to me that reporting on it is actually encouraging it.... Where is Matt Tait?

Tufee 5 years, 6 months ago

LHS need to get over the Tradition thing. My daughter a FSHS grad said it best. "Our parents created your Tradition." My wife's Sisters and Brother Started for 7 State Title teams at LHS.

I am glad that now more kids get to participate in Varsity Sports with 2 High Schools and Competition brings out excellence. Good luck to both Schools. Work Hard to Create your Own Legacy.

Golf4Life 5 years, 6 months ago

They opened the game by revealing a surprisingly large banner that read “You’re just jealous $ can’t buy tradition.... Do they really think the district gives Free State more money? Everyone gets an equal slice of the pie. Good try though.

barricade 5 years, 6 months ago

LHS has plenty of parents that created tradition too, not just Free State's parents

barricade 5 years, 6 months ago

The sign did not mean that the school district gives more money to Free State, the sign meant the Free State gets more donations, which is fine. If thats where people want to donate their money than its fine, it is their money and they can do what they want with it.

cchamber 5 years, 6 months ago

We lived in Lawrence for 10yrs and we got this Lawrence High tradition shoved down your throat.I have been around the Sunflower League since late 1970's and have played against great Lawrence teams.But that was the past and now bringing it up without the quality teams makes LHS a joke of the state.Go out and win and be gracious,that will bring back the respect.

barricade 5 years, 6 months ago

They do go out and win and be gracious, like any team they are going to have bad years and not win very many. Was it last year that Free State only had one win in boys basketball, and now look at how they bounced back. Not every LHS team is ungracious. Look the cross country team, girls bball two years ago, and the 2006 boys track team, and also the boys baseball team last year.

lawrencefan02 5 years, 6 months ago

If you want to talk about embarrassment let's talk about the way the fs students treated the lhs sophomore. Texting him and his mother all week long saying stuff isn't exactly classy. And peoplpeople should stop crying about the way Evan was treated because I'm sure Mr. PrItchard goes through just as much

lion_at_heart 5 years, 6 months ago

Cchamber- I don't know what your talking about telling Lawrence high to go out and win a state championship considering they won cross country the last two years, baseball last year, track and field in 2006. It seems to me that 4 state championships in 4 years is a pretty good accomplishment for LHS.

On the other hand. Good game by Marcus Ray it's s shame they couldn't say a little bit more about his performance and the same goes for Nick Hassig who had an outstanding game. And the secrets out about Lawrence high face guard Ray and press seems like no one else can do anything lately

Maxandwillie 5 years, 6 months ago

The LHS students went too far last night. Chanting "alcoholic" when one FS player was shooting free throws and several times chanting "BS" (but not the initials).

Kids will be kids, but where was the administration when they were doing those things? Not a single adult dealt with those actions. When FS cahnted "BS" at minimum two coaches on the bench turned and asked the students to stop.

The "tradition" thing is strange. FS is newer and doesnt have as much. Okay, its like my my oldest son touting his height compared to my youngest. Not much can be done about until time elapses and he gets taller.

kufan1214 5 years, 6 months ago

The banner itself was worth a thousand words, and so was the behavior of the LHS student section. Regardless if the FS student section had rude chants, it was put to a hault and LHS always one-uped them in some rude, disgusting way. I hope they're satisfied with the way they portrayed their school to Lawrence last night, because I saw it as a complete embarrassment. Also- I commend LJWorld for reporting about the ridiculous action.

cato_the_elder 5 years, 6 months ago

Go Lions! Your recent lip-sync video, now laughingly imitated by your cross-town wannabes, has become a nationwide hit and is absolutely awesome. Some of the posters on this forum seem to have forgotten that just a few years ago your tasteless neighbors to the north donned white trash bags during the "rivalry" basketball game - which was one of many such immature actions often perpetrated by the denizens of the Other School. If, among other things, they have chosen to label you as "white trash" in previous years, it's understandable that you would respond as you have. Don't ever forget that It's always a Great Day to be a Lion!

Austin Bergstrom 5 years, 6 months ago

Big ups to the LHS student section! Although some of their chants were maybe a lil overboard, they are still just words. We've all heard the saying sticks and stones..... For a high school game, the atmosphere was incredible. The ku student section would've been proud! Thanks for helping take the game to another level! Btw....loved the sign!

lhsmom 5 years, 6 months ago

It was easy to understand the Firebirds’ early-game nerves, given the level of energy provided by the school’s boisterous student section, which offered up a highly entertaining cheer commentary throughout the evening. They opened the game by revealing a surprisingly large banner that read “You’re just jealous $ can’t buy tradition,” and later showered Evan Manning, son of former NBA standout and current Kansas University men’s basketball assistant Danny Manning, with the following chant: “You’re not Danny (clap clap clap clap clap).”

Here is the back ground:

The "boisterous" crowd at the beginning was the students singing the lipdub song that Free State Students vandalized on Utube. It went past being a school prank when they not only vandalized the video but did huge damage to the teachers whole accout. The student body banning together to sing the song was the classiest way to deal with a bad, mean prank.

As for the Manning chant, I can not say I agree with that, it was wrong of the students but the readers should know that KJ was harrassed all week with text that were very personal in nature and just as mean spirited.

Once again LJWorld doesn't quite have it right and this time there is no excuse because they knew of the vandalism and if they were going to bring it up in this article both sides should have been told.

It is indeed a GREAT DAY TO BE A LION!

KU1992 5 years, 6 months ago

Thank you LHS mom for not letting these uninformed (not unintelligent) posters know what's what. LHS was extremely fired up for the game because they were very agitated at the youtube hacking that is AGAINST THE LAW. LHS has yet to break any laws this week... so to say the school that broke the law is classy is a little ridiculous. I am not saying yelling profanities at a sports game is appropriate. but IT HAPPENS. Both schools have shouted equally bad things before. such as accusing Bobby Davis of taking peoples ipods when he never took a single one. Or calling him daddy's boy. Freestate didn't have much of a need to yell BS last night either, they were getting almost every call. Take yourself of your pedestals for a second and realize each school does gives as bad as it gets, and that these are KIDS! The kids in america thing was sweet. They sign was sweet. The bowling pins for Marcus was sweet. The LHS student section was sweet. Freestate's was almost silent the whole game. Go lions!

KU1992 5 years, 6 months ago

Oh yeah, one more thing. LHS has won more state titles than Freestate BY FAR in the time Freestate has been open. And really?! we can't brag about tradition? So let me see.... no KU fan can brag about any titles we have won, or the fact the man who invented the game coached here, just because it was before our time. Please. Try not to make yourself look so foolish.

lhsmom 5 years, 6 months ago

I think it should also be said that many of these kids are friends and comments like the ones made here only make things worse. Before the game the Free State boys team walked right by the front row of the LHS crowd and many several of the kids stopped and shook their hands. After the game and the: (according to RibMan)

"The LHS "cheering" section was an embarrassment. It was personal, petty and mean-spirited. The school needs to think seriously about how they portrayed themselves to the city. The immaturity and lack of class was striking."

these same kids got together and chatted. It was a game on the court and they were mature enough to know it. The most "immature" thing done was putting the comment about the students in this article by the writer. It can only serve to fuel the fire.

cchamber 5 years, 6 months ago

The city of Lawrence be proud !? Where is a mirrow?

jayhawk1125 5 years, 6 months ago

So what about the "You're not Danny" chant? I would be honored to even be compared to him. And at least they didn't get KJ's texts that whole week. The Free State crowd were rumored to start a chant, MILF, MILF, MILF, MILF,....(Mother I'd Like to... uh you know the word) every time KJ was shooting free throws. I would much rather have a chant about my studly dad than my hot mom. It's just a good thing FS is all talk.

MaxandWillie, you really want the administration to go tell the high school students to stop. HMMMMMMMMMMMMM. Let's see what that does...? Make them want to do it more? DUH. All they want is attention and to affect the players or refs. Getting those teachers that they have no respect for out of school to say "STOP" is just gonna fuel the fire.

And by the way KU1992, you do not know that Bobby Davis thing isn't true. He actually was involved in stealing MY sisters ipod and they found the stolen ipod in a teamate, Paul Elshingers backpack. So watch your facts.

lucidity333 5 years, 6 months ago

I am a former resident to the great city of Lawrence, and absolutely love keeping up with with city news. After reading this RIDICULOUS blog of comments I have lost most of the respect that i once had. It is a game. Two games played per season. It is just hilarious to see the involvement, justifications, and "low blows" being thrown out by all of these bloggers. From an obviously over involved LHS mother to Maxandwillie these comments are really just hilarious. Having said that, it is obvious that the LHS aficionados are the ones that continue to keep the whole thing brewing. I would, personally, much rather be affiliated with the Free State side of town. Regardless of winning or not i feel like they wouldn't care nearly as much as the tradition upholding fans of Lawrence High. Two teams play in a game. One team will win. Teams change and WILL change drastically; FS can go from a 1-whatever season to beating the formerly "bangin" LHS team (its life, and highschool at that) Both teams and their fans should be able to walk out of the gym with their heads held high. To me, the FS people are the ones that handle themselves in that matter. High school students will be high school students wherever they are located in the US. It is part of our culture. "MILF" chants and comparisons will be said regardless of where you are. It is a mere part of the immaturity of high school. The outstanding part, to me, is the over involvement of bystanders who feel the need to fuel the fire by defending their collective schools. Last year LHS won. This year FS won. Seriously, it is life....deal with it and allow yourself to react in a positive manner.

and not to toot my own horn...i am one of those LHS state champion holders. When you think of it.... we WERE a powerhouse athletically. how could we not be? THE WHOLE TOWN OF LAWRENCE was being funneled into LHS. Essentially we were equivalent to modern day "club" or "aau" teams. OBVIOUSLY, after being opened for what?... a decade? FS will not be able to possess all of the banners LHS does, let alone tradition. People... lets put this into perspective. LHS tradition was created by an entire town... it is kind of hard to create as much tradition with half of the people. (especially when there are those who are so adamant about reinforcing "Tradition" beating you down every step of the way.) Imagine the powerhouse athletics that Lawrence could still possess if it were still based out of one high school. Then take that potential and divide it in half. Freestate doesn't have anything else to help it along the way, while LHS has the tradition thing at their beck and call. GIVE TRADITION A REST. Honestly, if that was the only element of my life that made me feel worthwhile...i would have a tough time dealing.

lucidity333 5 years, 6 months ago

Props to Free State continuing to try to create tradition in a hostile environment to begin with. And also for acting in a respectable manner. I guess when you win there is no need for justification, over involvement.

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