Lions eager for fresh start in regular season finale vs. SM West

The Lawrence High defense celebrates a turnover on downs against Free State on Friday, Oct. 14, 2022.

The Lawrence High football team is looking to get back into the win column on Senior Night, when the Lions host Shawnee Mission West in Friday’s regular season finale.

LHS enters the game at 4-3 and on the heels of a last-minute loss to Free State in the City Showdown last week at LHS.

Head coach Clint Bowen knows the loss to the rival Firebirds hurt his group, but the second-year Lions coach feels that the last week before the postseason presents an opportunity to start fresh.

“I think our kids understand the big picture of this,” Bowen said. “The good thing about the state of Kansas is everybody makes the playoffs. Everyone still has a seat at the table. So our season has kind of hit the reset button.”

The Lions managed 268 yards of total offense last week, switching between junior Tyson Grammer and sophomore Banks Bowen at quarterback throughout the second half. Lacking rhythm in back-to-back losses, Bowen said his group was focused on climbing out of the hole it has fallen into.

“They’re well aware of what’s been the issue in these games we’ve lost,” Bowen said. “Whether it be the first game to Olathe South or Gardner-Edgerton, we’ve had some battles in different games, but our kids’ spirits – they bounce back, they’re resilient bunch.”

SM West (0-7) will walk into LHS still searching for its first win after falling to 0-7 with a 55-14 loss against unbeaten Olathe North last Friday on their home turf. Bowen knows Vikings coach Tim Callaghan from his student-teaching days at Olathe North and he believes Callaghan is one of most seasoned coaches in the state.

“He’s taking good care of those kids,” Bowen said of Callaghan. “Those kids are going to come in here and fight and compete because of how he treats them, how he handles them and the respect those kids have for him. It’s unfortunate they haven’t cracked the win column yet.”

Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. at LHS.


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