Lawrence High girls drop 5th-place game to Lee’s Summit West

Junior Sophie DeWitt points out a Lee's Summit West defender during the fifth place game of the Truman Tournament Friday afternoon.

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. – After Lawrence High School’s girls basketball team dropped a 54-43 decision to Lee’s Summit West Friday afternoon, coach Jeff Dickson didn’t wait to get back to Lawrence to discuss what his team needed to do to get better.

“We’ve been fairly inconsistent this year even within a game, and inconsistent with effort at times, which is alarming for us and our program,” Dickson said.

Lawrence (7-5) went 1-2 to finish sixth in the Truman girls basketball tournament.

Against the Titans, LHS’ Chisom Ajekwu only scored 4 points in the first half after missing four attempts from the field. She went to the bench with just under four minutes to go in the first quarter with two fouls.

With Ajekwu’s absence in the paint and senior Sammy Williams battling an illness, Dickson brought Ella Stewart, Evann Seratte, Paiden Bell and Ozi Ajekwu off the bench to shift to a four-guard offense and full-court press.

The Lions were able to cut the deficit to as close as 6 points after a stretch of 10 points in the third quarter from Chisom Ajekwu along with a pair of made free throws from Hannah Stewart. But Lee’s Summit West continued to net triples to answer each of the Lions’ baskets.

Later on, Chisom Ajekwu, who ranks third in the Sunflower League in both points per game and rebounds, rallied back from her rough start, notching a total of 18 points.

“Now that I’m a senior, my sense of urgency is different,” she said. “This is my senior year, I don’t have very much games left. I just have to make sure every single game is good, doing the best I can, putting as much numbers up as I can for my team and making sure that not only I make an impact in games, but help leave a legacy behind and tradition behind for the younger kids to come in my place when I leave.”

Sammy Williams added 5 points on 2 of 5 shots as she played through an illness, and Leslie Ostronic and Sophie DeWitt helped force 11 turnovers on defense in the LHS press.

But all that couldn’t stop a Lee’s Summit West team that made 11 3-pointers throughout the game.

“We’re trying to figure out what we need to do to get moving in the right direction,” Dickson said. “(We’re) taking two steps forward and one step back … We have a program that’s built on team first, and while we have an elite talent in Chisom and some really hard-working kids, we still are having problems with kids coming out and being scared, maybe a foul there, or missed their man.”

LHS (7-6) is set to face Free State in the City Showdown at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Allen Fieldhouse.

Lawrence (43)

Hannah Stewart 3-6 2-5 11, Leslie Ostonic 0-2 0-0 0, Sammy Williams 2-5 0-0 5, Sophie DeWitt 0-3 2-2 2, Chisom Ajekwu 9-15 0-1 18, Ella Stewart 0-4 2-2 2, Evann Seratte 1-4 1-1 3, Ozi Ajekwu 1-2 0-0 2, Paiden Bell 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 16-41 7-11 43

Lee’s Summit West (54)

Tasia Johnson 3-8 0-0 7, Sydnee Kemp 2-6 4-4 9, Sydney Brooks 0-2 0-0 0, Lesley Lovelace 1-3 0-0 2, Abby Massengill 0-1 1-2 1, Audrey Parson 0-1 0-0 0, Charli Ritchey 5-8 0-0 12, Morgan Pietig 3-5 0-0 9, Marissa Ritchey 5-9 0-0 14. Totals: 19-43 5-6 54.

Lawrence 11 5 17 10 – 43

Lee’s Summit West 11 18 16 9 – 54

3-point goals: Lawrence 4-15 (Stewart 3, Williams 1); Lee’s Summit West 11-27 (M. Ritchey 4, Pietig 3, C. Ritchey 2, Kemp, Johnson). Turnovers: Lawrence 9, Lee’s Summit West 11.


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