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High School Sports

High School Sports

Lions fall late in heartbreaker

Lawrence High quarterback Brad Strauss (11) runs past Olathe East’s Myron Tipton on Friday, Sept. 16, 2011 in Olathe.

Lawrence High quarterback Brad Strauss (11) runs past Olathe East’s Myron Tipton on Friday, Sept. 16, 2011 in Olathe.

September 17, 2011

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— As the Lawrence High football team boarded the buses and left the Olathe District Activity Center Friday night, it saw plenty of points still on the field.

In the first quarter, the Olathe East punt that bounced off a Lawrence player and gave the ball back to the Hawks. The third-and-goal at the one-yard line and the turnover on downs that came two plays later. The missed game-winning two-point conversion after senior quarterback Brad Strauss led an 82-yard scoring drive with less than 1:30 in the game.

The game was there for the taking, but even as well as the Lions (1-2) played, they watched the Hawks (2-1) walk away with a 21-20 victory.

“We leave way too many points out,” Strauss said. “We were knocking on their doorstep a few times, and we couldn’t punch it in. We have to score in those situations, and it cost us a game.”

Both teams scored touchdowns on their opening drives, but a Lion turnover on the Hawks’ first punt led their second touchdown. Lawrence had the ball two more times in the first half and couldn’t get points out of either of possession. By halftime, East had mounted a 21-7 lead.

The Hawks relied heavily on the run, similar to the Lions’ previous opponents, so it should have been a run-out-the-clock game from then on. But the LHS defense didn’t let the run dictate the game, and East didn’t score the rest of the game, which was a bright spot, coach Dirk Wedd said.

The Lions scored late in the third when Strauss hit receiver Anthony Buffalomeat for a touchdown, bringing the deficit to seven points. LHS held East at bay while it moved to the one-yard line on third down. The Lions ran it twice with running back Charles Jackson, and twice he failed to get anything.

“You wouldn’t believe how frustrating it is,” Jackson said. “But you’ve got to move past it. It’s still early.”

The failure to convert opportunities close to the goal line is what has plagued the Lions this season. There weren’t any red zone interceptions this game, but there is still more to fix.

“It’s been a struggle,” Wedd said. “We’re a third of the way through the season and it’s something that we have to address in practice.”

The Lions weren’t done. They had just stopped the Hawks on a fourth-and-three after they passed up an easy field goal, one that would have sealed the game. With the ball at their own 18 and down seven with 1:20 to go, the Lions looked to Strauss to orchestrate one final drive. He ran for 47 yards on the drive, passed for 35 and capped it off with a 15-yard touchdown.

But instead of kicking a point after to send the game into overtime, Wedd called for a two-point conversion to win the game in regulation.

“We had the momentum and I really didn’t want to get into a smash-mouth overtime game,” he said.

Strauss was flushed out of the pocket on the conversion attempt and threw incomplete. LHS was on the losing end of a thriller.

After the game, Strauss said the Lions were close to becoming a good team. After facing three of the tougher Sunflower League teams to start the season, the Lions know what they are capable of; they just haven’t quite reached it.

“We just didn’t execute good enough when it mattered,” Strauss said.

Comments

dougmarshall 2 years, 7 months ago

Sorry i'm late to the party. I was out of town and this site doesn't view well from a smart phone. Anyway, I agree with erina1323. Where were all you haters two weeks ago? Any good coach knows you go for two on the road, the mo would go to the home team in OT, it is just the way it is. The saddest thing for all of you is if we make the two points there would only be one or two comments, period.

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erina1323 2 years, 7 months ago

Obviously coach wedd had enough confidence in his players to think they could get the two point conversion or else he would not have done that. It is still early in the season and they cannot afford any injuries. Playing those extra minutes who knows what could have happened. As a former player and now a coach I never heard of any coach wanting to end their teams season and not go to state. That is the main goal. That us just a ridiculous comment. You obviously don't know coach wedd.

All you people can say all sorts of awful comments behind your screen name but I can bet if you had to state your name you would never leave a comment.

Would coach wedd be an awful coach if they would have converted that two point conversion?

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edjayhawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Jeez. Everyone was on Wedd's case when he was conservative, now there on him for going for a two point conversion. I for one am glad Wedd has changed the offense and takes more risks, because it wil pay off. LHS will be a team at the end of the season in district play that you won't want to play.

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Aiko 2 years, 7 months ago

It's high school football........

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erina1323 2 years, 7 months ago

Where were all you people two weeks ago when they won. Why do you only have negative things to say when they lose. This team has played 3 of the toughest teams in the sunflower league to start their season and the last two games they have stuck with them. A coach cannot make his players throw interceptions or fumble a ball. Those two things have cost the lions multiple scoring opportunities. This is a great team with an awesome coaching staff that will be very successful in the end. Go lions!

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Homey 2 years, 7 months ago

It is unfortunate the coach is not as good as the team.

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Number_1_Grandma 2 years, 7 months ago

Wedd is not a good footbal coach but the cronies at LHS will keep their buddy until we get a new principal who hires outside his social network of friends. Mr. Wedd is nothing more than foul mouthed bully of teenage kids.

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pigballin 2 years, 7 months ago

“We had the momentum and I really didn’t want to get into a smash-mouth overtime game,” he(Wedd) said. Need i say anymore about getting a another football coach?

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pigballin 2 years, 7 months ago

“We had the momentum and I really didn’t want to get into a smash-mouth overtime game,” he(Wedd) said. Need i say anymore about getting a another football coach?

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pigballin 2 years, 7 months ago

Wedd is not a good football coach. Was at the game, his 3 -4 defense was being annihilated up the middle all night ..Too stubborn to stiffen up the middle. LHS needs a new up and coming coach. The kids need some help if they want win at LHS.

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