Preps notebook: Several Free State athletes sign to play sports at collegiate level

photo by: Carter Gaskins

In this file photo, Free State players Sara Roszak (23) and Tatum Clopton (16) celebrate Roszak's diving catch that ended the sixth inning of a 1-0 win over Washburn Rural and set the stage for the Firebirds' second consecutive Class 6A state title on Saturday, May 25, 2019, at Arrocha Ballpark.

Free State athletes in football, baseball, basketball, softball and several other sports have officially signed to play at the college level, and the school held a ceremony to recognize them on Wednesday.

In baseball, Gage Callaghan is planning to compete for Baker University and Matt Gabriel is headed to Benedictine College.

Shannon Clarke will play women’s basketball at the United States Naval Academy.

Four softball players will continue their careers after high school. Tatum Clopton (Oklahoma State), Sara Roszak (KU) and Georgia Rea (Western Illinois) are all playing at the Division I level. Robin Todd will play softball for Allen County Community College.

Daniel Kufahl and Ryley Wheat will play football at the next level. Kufahl is headed to Washburn University, and Wheat will attend Fort Hays State University.

FSHS girls tennis has two athletes who will play at the collegiate level next year. Keegan VanPelt will compete at the University of Nebraska-Omaha, and Thayu Kimori is going to Kansas Wesleyan University.

Christopher Stone will compete in cross-country and track at the University of Kansas after strong senior seasons in both. Ruthie Mutuku will be competing in track at Baker University.

Athletes in a few other sports were recognized, too: Grace Branson is headed to Hastings College for volleyball; Caleb Streeter will wrestle at Newman University; and Finn VanDyke will swim for Monmouth College.

LHS softball closing out regular season with busy week

Lawrence High softball is closing the season on a busy stretch — it’s played four games already this week, and it has one more scheduled for Thursday.

The week kicked off with a home doubleheader on Monday.

In the first game, LHS lost to Blue Valley Northwest, 4-2. The Lions (4-13) had a 2-1 lead going into the seventh before giving up three runs (two unearned). Hailey Ramirez and Charlee Burghart each had two hits to lead the way for Lawrence in that game. Emme Dye made several great plays at shortstop. Maelee Folks threw all seven innings; she struck out six batters and only gave up one earned run.

In the nightcap of the doubleheader, LHS bounced back to earn an 8-6 win over Mill Valley. Laci Thompson got the win as the pitcher, allowing only five hits over six innings before handing the ball to Folks for the save. Sydney Delfelder had three hits, including a double, to go along with two RBIs. Dye gave the Lions an early lead with a three-run triple, and Folks clobbered a two-run homer on a 3-0 count in the sixth. Ramirez also had two hits, one of which was a double, and three stolen bases. Layla Harjo had an RBI single as well.

On Tuesday, Lawrence suffered a 6-0 loss at Shawnee Mission North. Folks only gave up three earned runs on six hits and struck out four batters. Ramirez led the LHS offense with two hits, and Dye had another strong defensive performance.

On Wednesday, LHS played against Olathe West. Results from that game weren’t available by the Journal-World’s print deadline on Wednesday.

LHS will travel to Free State at 5:30 p.m. Thursday for the regular-season finale.

Monday: BVNW 4, LHS 2

BVNW 1 0 0 0 0 0 3 — 4

LHS 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 — 2

Monday: LHS 8, MV 6

LHS 4 0 0 1 1 2 0 — 8

MV 0 1 1 0 0 4 0 — 6

Tuesday: SMN 6, LHS 0

LHS 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 — 0

SMN 0 0 1 1 1 3 — 6

Seabury soccer shuts out Wyandotte

One goal was all Bishop Seabury’s soccer team needed in a 1-0 road win over Wyandotte on Tuesday.

Hannah Hartzler returned from an injury and scored the game’s only goal. Junior goalkeeper Brooke Spurlock took care of the rest, recording a shutout in the net on the defensive end.

Bishop Seabury improved to 4-7 with two games left to play. The Seahawks will host Atchison today.

Shot clock coming soon?

The National Federation of State High School Associations Board of Directors has approved the use of a 35-second shot clock for high school basketball as early as the 2022-23 season, but it’s not yet clear whether Kansas will adopt the change.

It’s up to individual state governing bodies whether they will adopt the change, and KSHSAA released an official statement regarding that topic on Wednesday afternoon:

“The KSHSAA is aware the NFHS has approved the use of a 35 second shot clock for basketball beginning with the 2022-2023 season. The KSHSAA staff and Executive Board will consult with member school administrators during the next year to deter­mine the best decision for the student-athletes in Kansas. Because the rule change is a state adoption, it is an option states may want to consider for us


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