Thursday, Jan. 17 2013 1:50PM
Titans oust Broncos in semifinals
By Ryan Weaver
Special to the Journal
The Lee’s Summit West Titans avenged a Jan. 4 loss against Lee’s Summit North Jan. 16, 57-45, while advancing to the championship of the 38th Annual Culver’s Classic at Lee’s Summit High School.
The Broncos, 9-4, came from behind in the first match-up for a 49-45 win, but couldn’t repeat the feat after falling behind from the start.
“We were seeking revenge, especially since we didn’t play well at all,” Titan junior guard Monte Harrison said. “We played down (Jan. 4), I think, but we came back here today, we didn’t play our best, but we got the job done.”
Thanks to five Bronco turnovers in the first three minutes, the Titans, now 11-2, raced off to an 8-0 lead and never looked back.
The Broncos made a late charge, coming within 50-45 after three free throws from Richard Chapman, but turned the ball over twice in the last minute and LSW sealed the game at the charity stripe.
“North’s a good basketball team,” Titans coach Michael Schieber said. “They’re going to win a lot of basketball games this year and I have the utmost respect for coach (Michael) Hilbert and those kids. They played their guts out. We were fortunate to make a few more plays tonight.”
In the last minute of the game, the Titans went five-for-six at the line and 18-for-24 for the game. The Broncos also shot well from the line, 14-of-15.
“I think Lee’s Summit West is one of the best teams in the state of Missouri,” Hilbert said, “and I was very proud of my guys for the way they competed and played hard and had a chance – a couple of minutes to go, it’s a two-possession game.”
Harrison led the Titans with 20 points, 13 of them coming in the second half.
“Monte’s got an incredible amount of ability,” Schieber said, “and we just have to get everything else going for him. I thought he did a really good job of playing within himself while also getting some key buckets, if that makes sense.”
Ryan Williams pitched in 15 points and Trevor Gregory added 11 for LSW.
The Titans played lock-down defense most of the game, forcing turnover after turnover. After LSW went up 21-9 early in the second quarter, however, the Titans relaxed a little and the Broncos went on a 9-0 run to pull within 21-18.
Later in the quarter, Chapman hit back-to-back 3-pointers and a traditional 3-point play to narrow the Titan lead to 29-27.
But that’s as close as the Broncos got as turnovers plagued their offense.
“I think we had 23 (turnovers) total for the game,” Hilbert said. “That’s what Lee’s Summit (West) does to you; they get up and they guard you and then they try to take away passing lanes. We didn’t do a very good job of taking care of the ball. If we would do a little better job, we may have had some opportunities to score the ball and it may have been a tighter game.”
Chapman scored a game-high 21 points for LSN and Tyler Anderson added 15. The pair were the only Broncos to score in the second half.
The Titans will face Columbia Hickman at 8:30 p.m. Friday for the championship while the Broncos take on Raytown South for third place at 7 p.m. Friday.