Despite winning the first two games of the season, it was easy for Lawrence High’s football players to immediately turn their focus to Lee’s Summit (Mo.) West.
The Lions know what type of team they will be playing in their home opener at 7 p.m. today at LHS.
It’s the second year of the Sunflower League-Suburban Conference showdown. Missouri won all 10 games last season.
“We’re going to have our hands full,” Lawrence coach Dirk Wedd said. “We haven’t played anybody close to this, so this will be a great test for us. We need to come and play the best game we’ve played before and play over our heads to be in it.”
The Titans (3-1, ranked No. 6 in Missouri’s Class 6) are led on offense by speedy senior running back Phillip Brooks and junior quarterback Ben Kobel. The 5-foot-9, 170-pound Brooks rushed for 142 yards and two touchdowns in a 28-7 win over Lawrence last season.
Then there’s 6-2, 180-pound senior receiver/defensive back Mario Goodrich, who has committed to play at Nebraska. Goodrich, a four-star prospect, has 10 receptions for 125 yards on offense, along with seven pass breakups on defense.
“They’ve got a lot of weapons,” Wedd said. “We are young on defense and we’re learning as we go. It’s going to be a big test for us. Offensively we’re going to have to step up.”
Lawrence (2-0) senior receiver/cornerback Ekow Boye-Doe, who has scholarship offers from Kansas, Kansas State and Tulane, among others, will likely line up at times against Goodrich.
Boye-Doe has shifted into a larger role on Lawrence’s defense this season. In the first two weeks, he was usually locked onto the opposing team’s top receiver.
“I mean, it’s exciting,” Boye-Doe said of playing Goodrich. “I’m looking forward to the challenge, for sure.”
With starters on the field, the Lions’ offense scored on every possession last week. They are confident of their potential but know Lee’s Summit West will present its own challenges defensively.
“We’ve got some speed and we’re pretty explosive,” Wedd said. “The offensive line has done a good job. But we haven’t played anybody this good.”
Even if the Lions are facing their toughest competition of the season, they didn’t have any plans of changing their preparations throughout the week.
“Practice is the same,” Boye-Doe said. “Everything is the same. We’re just trying to win.”
LHS probable starters
LT — Kristian Russell, sr.
LG — Nick Englebert, sr.
C — Jacob Mills, sr.
RG — Bailey Greer, sr.
RT — Bryce Tibke, jr.
QB — Dante Jackson, sr.
RB — Angel Garcia, sr.
WR — Ekow Boye-Doe, sr.
WR — Jalen Dudley, sr.
WR — Brett Chapple, jr.
WR — Bryson Cummins, jr.
K — Ross Brungardt, jr.
P — Jalen Dudley, sr.
DE — Eric Galbreath, jr.
DT — Tim Vongphachanh, sr.
DT — EJ Jewsom, jr.
DE — Nick Miller, jr.
LB — Ja’Relle Dye, sr.
LB — Isaac Flint, jr.
LB — Caleb Mondi, jr.
CB — Ekow Boye-Doe, sr.
CB — DeShon Lewis, so.
SS — Jakoby Masters, jr.
FS — Harrison King, sr.