Lawrence girls roll past Wichita Southeast in sub-state opener
The Lions are one win and 167 miles away from heading back to the 6A state tournament.
Lawrence High’s girls basketball team claimed a 64-29 win over Wichita Southeast Thursday night in its final home game of the season to advance to the sub-state championship at No. 2 Derby. The Panthers defeated Haysville-Campus by a 68-38 margin.
“I thought we played really well together, and shared the ball really good,” LHS coach Jeff Dickson said. “Our five seniors were sensational in their final home game and it’s exactly what we needed to gain some momentum to keep trying to move our way through sub-state”
With a clear size advantage, Chisom Ajekwu took over quickly on offense. She scored 12 points with two assists from Leslie Ostronic and one from Sophie DeWitt. Ajekwu added 2 blocks by the end of the first half as the Lions cruised to a 20-point halftime lead.
Four different Lions (12-9) had put points on the board by the end of the second period, with Ajekwu scoring 12 in the first quarter alone. On three of her first-half baskets, Ajekwu scored on assists from Ostronic.
In a lineup that features five seniors, Ostronic and Ajekwu have especially become accustomed to where and when the other wants the ball.
“We’ve been playing for so long that we kind of have that eye connection already,” Ajekwu said. “Leslie is always looking to see whether or not I am open first, she knows the type of player I am.”
Ajekwu scored a game-high 18 points, while Hannah Stewart added 17 points via five triples. Ella Stewart, Layla Harjo and DeWitt contributed to the Lions eight 3-pointers as a team.
No Golden Buffalo scored more than 7 points, as Ajekwu had a pair of blocks inside the paint. Harjo, Ella Stewart, DeWitt and Hannah Stewart all were credited with steals that contributed to the Lions forcing 14 turnovers.
LHS will travel to Derby at 6 p.m. Saturday.
“We went to the Emporia tournament a couple years ago where we played Derby in the championship game, and they stuck it to us pretty good,” Dickson said. “All our seniors were sophomores and all their seniors were sophomores. We have a little experience with them, but it’s been a couple years. I think we’re better than we were then, and they clearly are.”
The Panthers (20-0), the defending 6A state champions, are riding a 42-game win streak. They feature McDonald’s All-American Kennedy Brown, who is an Oregon State commit.
“I’m excited about the opportunity, our kids are excited too,” Dickson said. “We know that we are one of the best teams in the state, and we absolutely know that they are (too). We’re going to get their best effort and we’re going to give them our best effort and we’ll see where we’re at at the end of it all.”
Wichita Southeast (29)
Charity Dixon 1-8 0-0 3; Chariah Daniels 3-10 1-7 7; Endeyah Donnell 2-7 1-2 5; Julia Harding 2-4 1-1 5; Hattie Trotter 2-9 1-2 5; Rakailah Hill 1-2 0-0 2; Anah Tolson 0-2 0-0 0; Amari Lowe 0-1 2-4 2. Totals: 11-43 5-15 29.
Hannah Stewart 6-12 0-2 17; Leslie Ostronic 0-4 0-0 0; Sammy Williams 1-2 1-4 3; Evann Seratte 0-3 0-0 0; Chisom Ajekwu 8-13 2-2 18; Ella Stewart 4-6 0-0 9; Sophie DeWitt 1-2 0-0 3; Ozi Ajekwu 4-6 3-6 11; Layla Harjo 1-1 0-0 3. Totals: 25-49 6-14 64.
Wichita SE 8 6 11 4 – 29
Lawrence 21 15 22 6 – 64
3-point goals: Wichita SE: 1-12 (Dixon); Lawrence: 8-16 (H. Stewart 5, E. Stewart, DeWitt, Harjo). Turnovers: Wichita SE 14, Lawrence 7. Fouled Out: None.