LHS girls drop 49-43 decision to Blue Valley West in regular-season finale

photo by: Carter Gaskins

Lawrence High's Amaya Marshall and Free State's Shannon Clarke battle for a rebound Friday night at LHS on Feb. 19, 2021.

Lawrence High’s girls basketball team ended the regular season with a loss by dropping a 49-43 decision on the road against Blue Valley West on Wednesday.

The Lions (2-18) ended the regular season on a 12-game losing skid and have not earned a win since their 41-36 victory over Shawnee Mission North on Jan. 20. LHS was within 9 points in two of its last three games entering postseason play, which included its 6-point defeat at Blue Valley West.

But it was really a slow start that doomed the Lions, who dug themselves into a 17-3 hole after the first quarter. They got down by as many 18 points to the Jaguars, who snapped a 12-game losing streak of their own with Wednesday’s win to improve to 3-14 on the year.

“Our team did not come out ready to compete and play hard,” LHS head coach Jeff Dickson said. “(We were) not focused, not emotionally invested or engaged. We have seen this rear its ugly head too many times this year, and I have waited too long to address it properly.”

And, yet, the Lions also had some positives come from their latest loss. After all, they managed to claw their way back into the game, thanks in large part to an 18-point effort in the third quarter. LHS posted double-digit outputs over the final three periods, cutting it to a one-possession game with one minute left to go.

Blue Valley West ended up hitting some free throws down the stretch to put the game away.

Many promising underclassmen were responsible for Lawrence’s late charge. Freshman Destiny Savannah (8 points) and freshman Azura Clark (7 points) provided a huge spark in the second quarter to help get LHS back in the game in the first place.

Freshman Brecken Ostronic, sophomore Daphne Bracker Sturm, sophomore Hailey Ramirez, sophomore Lucy Hardy and sophomore Serenity Keo also played a part in the comeback bid by providing strong play on both ends of the floor. Ramirez matched Savannah with a team-high 8 points in the loss.

“We finally just played the kids that played hard, played with fire and intensity,” Dickson said. “And they brought us back.”

Dickson was especially proud of Savannah’s energy when she was on the floor. She knocked down a pair of 3-pointers in the third quarter. No other LHS player made more than one triple in the loss.

“If all of our kids will compete and play as hard all the time as Destiny Savannah, then there is no stopping us,” Dickson said.

Lawrence will travel to Olathe West (12-5) at 7 p.m. Wednesday for its substate opener. The Owls recorded a 56-33 win over the Lions in the regular-season meeting between these two teams on Feb. 11.

Lawrence 3 11 18 11 — 43

BV West 17 11 10 11 — 49

Lawrence (43)

Hailey Ramirez 8, Amaya Marshall 7, Destiny Savannah 8, Layla Harjo 7, Lucy Hardy 5, Serenity Keo 2, Azura Clark 6.


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