Titans face tougher path in football

dmcqueen@lsjournal.comApril 16, 2014 

The road to another state football championship just got a little tougher for Lee’s Summit West.

If the Titans want to win a second consecutive state title, it won’t happen in Class 5, and they’ll have to survive a much tougher district. The Missouri High School Activities Association recently released its football and basketball district assignments for the next two years, and the Titans have been moved up to Class 6 in football.

Lee’s Summit West is now in Class 6 District 4 along with city rivals Lee’s Summit and Lee’s Summit North, perennial state powers Blue Springs and Rockhurst; and Raymore-Peculiar, Joplin and Springfield Kickapoo.

West and Kickapoo replace Blue Springs South, which was moved to District 3, and Liberty, which dropped to Class 5.

West coach Royce Boehm said he was expecting the Titans to move up a class as the school’s enrollment grew. West now has 1,858 students, which puts it right in the 1,790-2,960 range of Class 6.

“With the numbers, it’s just where we are right now,” Boehm said. “It’s time for us to move on to Class 6.”

Boehm, who has coached the Titans since the school opened in 2004, has been through this before. West started out in Class 4 before moving up to Class 5 after four years. He led the Titans to the first of their three state titles in Class 4 in 2007 before winning Class 5 championships in 2010 and last fall.

Winning in Class 6 though, will present a bigger challenge, especially in district play. Blue Springs has won the last two Class 6 titles and handed West its only loss last season. Lee’s Summit, behind Missouri-bound quarterback Drew Lock, is on the rise and Rockhurst, while down last season, will always be a factor.

“It’s going to be a tough district,” Boehm said. “But to be the best you have to beat the best, that’s they way we look at it. We’ll have the same approach in Class 6 that we had in Class 4 and Class 5. We’re just going to take it one game at a time.”

Summit Christian Academy has been assigned to Class 2 District 14. The Eagles, in their second season of play, also have African-Centered College Prep, Butler, El Dorado Springs, Lamar, Sherwood, Stockton and University Academy in their district.

The Lee’s Summit schools remain in Class 5 for basketball. Lee’s Summit and North are in District 14 with Raytown, Truman and William Chrisman while West is in District 13 with Ray-Pec, Belton, Ruskin and Rockhurst. St. Teresa’s Academy replaces Rockhurst in the girls district.

Summit Christian is assigned to Class 3 District 14 along with African-Centered College Prep, Barstow, Kansas City Central, Hogan Prep, O’Hara, Pembroke Hill, KC Southwest and University Academy.

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