The only blemish on Lee’s Summit West’s 66-50 Class 5 quarterfinal victory over Liberty on Saturday came early in the third quarter, when junior forward Christian Bishop cut his head making a defensive play.
It didn’t stop Bishop from returning to the game to score a team-high 19 points. But it was bad enough that Bishop departed after the game to get the cut stitched up.
“Any time you get a teammate who gets injured… it shakes you up a little bit. There was a lot of blood down there,” said Titans coach Michael Schieber, his right sleeve still stained by Bishop’s blood. “I thought the kids did a really good job. It obviously picked us up when he came back out too.
Lee’s Summit West (25-2) overpowered Liberty with the frontcourt combination of Bishop and senior Elijah Childs (18 points).
“We knew we had an advantage in the post, so we tried to get there as much as possible and work inside-out,” Childs said. “Everything was clicking tonight.”
Childs and the rest of the Titans were relieved when Bishop returned.
“I was happy,” Childs said with a smile. “I had extra help now.”
It was the primary reason why the Titans enjoyed a 33-6 free-throw advantage, and why Liberty (20-9) couldn’t get within nine points in the second half, despite 23 points from Jalen Lewis.
“We were able to build a lead through our post presence, and then our guards hit shots to keep them honest, and getting to the foul line and converting… just so many things we did well tonight,” Schieber said.
Class 5 Girls
Lee’s Summit 57, Park Hill 53: Lee’s Summit had twice come within one possession of beating Park Hill this season.
The Tigers got it done on Saturday at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena, earning their first trip to the Final Four since 2005.
“Heart. All heart. Definitely heart,” senior guard Paige Elston said. “We knew we could do it from the beginning.”
Elston made all 10 of her free throws down the stretch, part of a game-high 20 points, after the Tigers (15-13) saw their four-point lead evaporate.
“When Claire (Lock) fouled out, the team looked a little frazzled, and I called that timeout,” Lee’s Summit coach Jessica Crawford said. “We’re more than just a one-player team. Claire is our leading scorer, our go-to a lot of times, but they focused on her tonight. I feel like a lot of people stepped up to kind of replace that presence late in the game.”
Lock finished with 10 points, but fouled out halfway through the fourth quarter. Randi Johnson chipped in 12 points.
Park Hill (21-7) got 19 points from Tiayia Bryant, but couldn’t find enough offense down the stretch to beat Lee’s Summit for the third time this season.
“Getting to state means so much. It means all the hard work that we put in from the very first practice paid off,” Elston said.
The Tigers will play either Jackson or St. Joseph’s Academy on Friday at 6 p.m. in the Class 5A semifinals.
Class 4 boys
Grandview’s state tournament run ended on Saturday. The Bulldogs lost 59-52 to Bolivar on the campus of Southwest Baptist University.
Grandview’s season ends with a record of 24-5.
Kearney 59, Raytown South 53: For the first time in seven years, Kearney is headed to the Missouri state final four.
The Bulldogs defeated Raytown South for the third time this season — the latest a win at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena that will send them to the Missouri Class 4 semifinals next week in Columbia.
Kearney (21-7) will face Vashon (25-3) at 3:30 p.m. Thursday at Mizzou Arena.
Dylan Ritz led Kearney with 21 points. Sevon Witt scored 17 for Raytown South.
Class 4 girls
St. Pius X 56, Center 40: New class. Same result.
Despite moving up to Missouri Class 4 this season, the St. Pius X girls basketball team will return to the state semifinals.
The Warriors breezed past Center in the quarterfinals Saturday at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena.
The Warriors (25-3), who placed third in Class 3 last March, will face Dexter (22-8) at 6:50 p.m. Thursday at Mizzou Arena.
The Star’s Sam McDowell contributed to this report.