Pirates football team leads the way in awards

Eight different Piper Pirates football players earned awards at last weekend's KCK Preps Awards Presentation. Head coach Chris Brindle and linebacker Colton Beebe took home two of the top three awards.

PHOTOS: KCK Preps Awards ceremony

Check out some photos from last weekend's awards show at The Legends Theatre in KCK!

Prospect Profile: Tanner Eikenbary (Piper)

Here's a look at Piper Pirates quarterback Tanner Eikenbary.

KCK Preps Prospect: Kendall Short, Mill Valley

Despite missing nearly half the season, Mill Valley Jaguars running back Kendall Short finished with over 700 yards of total offense and 12 touchdowns.

Farewell, my friends

With mixed feelings comes this announcement: This will be the last night I cover high school sports on a full-time basis. While I'll try to give a full explanation down the road, I'll try a cliff notes version first:

1. I want to put my sole focus on The Kansan and another upcoming business project

2. I need to continue to rebuild my life (health and social) and that includes having Tuesday/Friday nights off.

I put my heart and soul into the high school sports community for four years. I want to thank the supporting parents , fans and players for making these four years a great joy for me. No matter what I accomplish in life down the road, KCK Preps will always be the thing I was most proud of. Working on stories until 3 a.m. each Wednesday and Saturday morning was worth it for all of you.

For those who may be angry with me as a result of this, while I wouldn't blame you at all, I pray for your forgiveness and hope you can understand where I'm coming from. This is nothing anyone did and usually, I try to consult with my closest friends before making a big decision. However, this is a decision I needed to make on my own and by myself.

Again, thank you for the support over the years. My "last dance" will come on signing day for the football guys. I'll leave KCK Preps online for a while so you can go back and save any stories.

Goodbye,

Nick Sloan

Scores 1/4/2013



by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com

Bonner Springs vs Turner

I attended the Bonner Springs vs Turner matchup in one of the sloppiest games of the season. Bonner Springs won the game 39 to 36.

Sam Worthy who had a very strong first half for the Bears didn't play in the second half. I did not get word why but it played a factor as Worthy was the best player on the court last night. The All KCK Preps offensive lineman showed good moves in the post and good ability to finish from short range. He scored the first 8 for Turner.

De'andre Fenrick who is the leading scorer for the Bears simply couldn't get it going. It was very clear that he is capable but we must credit the Bonner Springs 2-3 zone for disrupting his ability to finish in the lane. The 5'5 guard repeatedly had to shoot over the 6'8 Howell at the rim.

Luke Terrell stood out to me for Bonner Springs. He wasn't the leading scorer, rebounder or assister. he however showed a ton of heart and hustle securing several loose balls and knocking down a few shots. I am a huge fan of players like Terrell.

Tyler Howell also was very effective especially for the reason I mentioned about his presence. On the defensive end of the floor he affected a number of shots and rebounded the ball well.

Jordan Jackson's debut at the point guard position was good.


The girls game was not nearly as competitive as Bonner Springs kept on rolling with a 56-28 victory. This team has an unquestioned stay in Anna Deegan who is simply a step ahead of her opponents right now. It is important to note however that as good as Deegan has played this season she is benefiting from a very strong supporting cast.

Haley Hoffine, Julianne Jackson, Mikaela Bennett and Kennedy Bizzell all bring balance to the talent of Deegan. In comparison to the challenges a D1 talent like Taylor Williams at Bishop Ward. You can have a ton of talent but it takes a good amount of skill from team mates to be successful on the court.

An interesting matchup for the lady Braves on Tuesday as the last real hurdle for taking a strangle hold on the league race comes to town. Tonganoxie has gotten off to a good start to their season.

*********************************

Sumner Academy vs Atchison

Sumner Academy took the trip to Atchison to face an improved Redmen squad and claimed a 68 to 40 victory. Alex Garvin scored 22 points and had 17 rebounds. Jowell Daniels added 19 points and 7 rebounds.

Coach Parra had some good things to say about the improved Atchison squad.

"They are pretty athletic and young. They play 3 freshman alot" said Coach Parra.

**********************************

A rivalry may be born with the the Lady Sabres and Atchison. The Sabres dropped a very close game 43 to 42. This is the second year in a row now that Atchison has knocked off Sumner at home. These two teams split a league title last season.

The Sabres are playing without Taj Brimmer who has gotten off to a very strong start.

The Lady Sabres traveled to Pembrook Hill on Thursday and fell 55 to 34. I got to watch a good portion of this game and the Sabres got a look at a college player who is headed to Washburn. Angela Franklin showed well during this game.

***********************************

Bishop Ward fell 73 - 36 against Mill Valley.

photos provided by Kelly Oaks

The Time Warner Cable Basketball Showcase

by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com


video

Event marks the first time that high school basketball will be played at KC's world-class arena

Kansas City (January 2, 2012) - In celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Time Warner Cable Metro Sports is hosting a major high school basketball event on Jan. 21 at Sprint Center.

The Time Warner Cable Basketball Showcase presented by Metro Sports will feature eight games involving 16 Kansas City area high school basketball teams, starting at 9 a.m., and will mark the first time that high school basketball has ever been played at Sprint Center. All games will be broadcast live in HD on Metro Sports, and tickets for the event are only $10 for the entire day and can be purchased at the Sprint Center box office.

This showcase will give area high school basketball players the opportunity live their dream of being a big-time college/professional basketball player for a day. Not only will the players be able to play in a world-class arena, but the teams will be able to use Sprint Center's incredible locker rooms that were built to host NBA/NHL teams. Additionally, all teams will take part in a full postgame press conference in Sprint Center's interview room just like a college or NBA team would do following a game, and these press conferences will also be shown live on Metro Sports.

"We are excited to provide Kansas City sports fans with a great event like this on Martin Luther King Jr. Day and we are hoping this is something that can become an annual tradition," said Chris Huwe, Metro Sports general manager. "We are also so proud to provide this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for local high school basketball players to experience what it is like to play in a big-time college basketball or NBA game at a world-class venue."

Metro Sports is available throughout the Kansas City area on Time Warner Cable (channel 30, 310 and in HD on 1310), Comcast (channel 258) and Knology in Lawrence (channel 37). Below is the full game/broadcast schedule for The Time Warner Cable Basketball Showcase presented by Metro Sports:

9 a.m. - Hogan Prep vs. Harmon (Boys)

10:30 a.m. - North Kansas City vs. Staley (Girls)

12 p.m. - Lincoln Prep vs. St. Teresa's Academy (Girls)

1:30 p.m. - Northeast vs. East (Boys)

3 p.m. - Lincoln Prep vs. Central (Boys)

4:30 p.m. - Wyandotte vs. Washington (Boys)

6 p.m. - Grandview vs. Rockhurst (Boys)

7:30 p.m. - Raytown South vs. Raytown (Boys)

Note: Participating schools will have the ability to purchase tickets at half price, and will receive several other perks including the opportunity to bring their pep band and cheerleaders, and each school also has the chance to have their dance team perform at halftime live on Metro Sports.

Cofield, Johnson named to East Shrine Bowl Team


By DAVID BROX, davidbrox@shukc.com

The 2013 Kansas Shrine Bowl game will be played at Washburn University on Saturday, July 27th at 7 p.m.

Keaton Cofield (Piper) and Ben Johnson (Basehor-Linwood) were named to the 2013 Shrine Bowl East team, which was released today.  

Chris Brindle (Piper) was named to the coaching staff.

I got the privilege to put in votes for our area players and obviously Cofield and Johnson were on my ballot. 

Cofield was named to our KCK Preps Defensive Team and was a finalist for our Defensive Player of the Year. 

Johnson was one of three players named to both the KCK Preps offensive and defensive teams.  He also claimed the honor of our Top Prospect.

So needless to say, I have no disagreement with these selections.  We will pursue getting more media in our area voting for these types of honors. 

EAST

Justice Baid.................................. Neodesha High
Derek Bayless........................... Caney Valley High
Nick Becker........................................ Eudora High
Denzel Chilcoat............................. Hiawatha High
Keaton Cofield...................................... Piper High
Jordan Ebert................................ Rock Creek High
Will Geary......................................... Topeka High
Gabe Guild.................................... SM South High
Dylan Hall........................................ Seaman High
Kyle Hammond..................................... Crest High
Cody Howell.................................... Chanute High
Dakota Jiskra..................................... Lyndon High
Ben Johnson..................... Basehor-Linwood High
Jordan Johnson................ Olathe Northwest High
Kade Larson................................... Louisburg High
Dan Morin..................... St. Thomas Aquinas High
Jerel Morrow................................... Emporia High
Peter Pfannenstiel....................... Silver Lake High
Matt Plank....................... Gardner-Edgerton High
Joe Pomatto......................................... Paola High
Aaron Ramsey.......... Blue Valley Southwest High
Staton Rebeck............................. Mill Valley High
Clay Rhodes................... Blue Valley Stilwell High
Ethan Spore..................................... Oswego High
Curtis Stallbaumer.............................. B & B High
Cody Stanclift.............. Lawrence Free State High
Brett Sterbach............................... SM West High
Brad Strauss.................................. Lawrence High
Trent Tanking..................................... Holton High
Dayton Valentine............................. Baldwin High
Marc Walbridge.............................. McLouth High
Braden Werner................ Shawnee Heights High
Conley Wilkins.................. Blue Valley West High
Mitch Wille...................... SM Bishop Miege High

Coaches:
Jason Swift (head)........... Shawnee Heights High
Bob Lisher............................ Lawrence Free State
Jon Holmes............................. Bishop Miege High
Chris Brindle......................................... Piper High
Criss Davis................................ Caney Valley High
Chris Stewart.................................. McLouth High

WEST

Gabe Bergmann........................... Concordia High
Jacob Brooks.................. Norton Community High
Cody Busby............................... Salina South High
David Cardinal....................................... Hays High
Bradey Chard.................................. Plainville High
Bryce Chavis.............................. Riley County High
DeeIsaac Davis................................ Andover High
Riley Dowler............................ Arkansas City High
Denver Doyle............................ Garden Plain High
Kolby Fennewald............................ Mulvane High
Collin French............................... McPherson High
Jarod Gagnebin.......................... Hutchinson High
Riley Galyon..................................... Sterling High
Dalton Gantz.................................. Ness City High
Justin Gemachlich....................... Dodge City High
Hunter Harrison......................... Great Bend High
Kip Keeley....................................... LaCrosse High
Drew Kite.......................... Scott Community High
Stanten Krone..................................... Beloit High
Alex Lee......................... Wichita Northwest High
Justus Moreland................. Wichita Heights High
Zeke Palmer........................... Bishop Carroll High
Wes Phillips.............................. Maize South High
Markus Phox................... Wichita Collegiate High
Sean Rodriguez............................. Nickerson High
Kellen Sims.......................................... Derby High
Ethan Stallbaumer.............................. Maize High
Bryce Steiner.......................... Central Plains High
Logan Thompson........................... Sedgwick High
Cody Walther................................. Rose Hill High
James West.............................. Junction City High
Clay Wilcox.................................... Chaparral High
Tanner Wood...................... Conway Springs High
Nick Young...................................... Madison High

Coaches:
Ryan Cornelsen (head)......................... Hays High
Steve Martin.................. Wichita Northwest High
Mike Lee.......................................... Andover High
Dave Fennewald............................. Mulvane High
Brad McCormick...................... Garden Plain High


Matt Hendricks................................ Sterling High

Congrats to these young men and Coach Brindle.

Lady Braves Avenge Loss Against Pirates


by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com



The Bonner Springs Lady Braves defeated the Lady Piper Pirates last night 46 to 39.
Kennedy Bizzell

The Lady Braves were led in scoring by their Freshman Julianne Jackson, with 11 points.

Julianne Jackson
Junior Kennedy Bizzell scored 9 and did so from outside which really opened things up for the rest of the Lady Braves.  Vernon Birmingham awarded Bizzell with our "Get Buckets" player of the game award.

Once again, balanced scoring by the remaining team members proved too tough for Piper to handle.

The Pirates were definitely in the game through 3rd quarters but simply got smothered by the Lady Braves defense in the fourth. 



The Lady Braves will be back in action against Turner on Thursday December 20, 2012 for their final game before Christmas Break.

Photos provided by Kelly Oaks.

The Power 14 - Combined KCK, KVL power rankings

By NICK SLOAN, NJSloan212@gmail.com

I'm going to try and do something a little bit new this year.

Beginning today, I'm going to do a combined KCK/KVL power rankings list. Yes, that includes all 14 teams. It's pretty early in the season, so this will be a bit flawed.

Let's get right into it.

1. Lansing (7-0)

This is a no-brainer for week one. They're the only undefeated team in either league right now and at times, they've looked very good. They almost gave up a 19-point lead against Mill Valley, but don't let that fool you. This is a deep team where five or six guys can step up to the plate any night. Joe Schneider (13 ppg) and Zack Jackson lead the way in scoring, but Clay Young, Khalil Bailey, Lucas Mein and Roy Clayter are other players who can score 10-15 points any given night. There are some potential issues with too much depth, but having a lot of good players probably is good thing --- and "The Briggs Squad" has a lot of good players right now.

2. Washington (4-2)

Washington had a few hiccups last week against Shawnee Mission Northwest and Lee's Summit West. However, both of those teams have a chance to be really good this year. You can't forget that the Wildcats had a great week in Leavenworth to begin the season, blowing out Word of Life and smoking Leavenworth in a virtual road game in the championship game. Deandre King is beginning to step up and making a case for All-KCK Preps First Team. Two back-to-back 20 point games has him going in the right direction. Kindred Williams and James Jappa have been huge inside as well.

3. Mill Valley (3-2)

Basehor and Piper fans may be a little upset that I put a two-loss team over them, but here's my case. Mill Valley beat Piper on the road, they're a good team and their two losses may have come to the two best teams in Kansas 5A: Shawnee Mission South and Lansing. Nathan Stacy is having a heck of a year so far, including a 25-point game against Lansing.

4A. Basehor-Linwood (4-1) and 4B. Piper (6-1)

I'm going to chicken out and put Basehor and Piper together. I'm not including Ben Johnson when I project Basehor here, so once he comes back, I could see Basehor overtaking Mill Valley. Basehor's Chase Younger has a 39-point game and 30-point game under his belt to begin the season. Meanwhile, Piper is arguably the most improved team in Kansas City metro area. Still, I think Piper needs a bit of a signature win. Four of their wins came against 0-5, 1-4 and 2-4 (twice) teams. Another came against a 3-2 Harmon team and 3-3 Paola team. You could argue their loss to Mill Valley was their best result. I think Piper is for real, but the next step in the program resurrection at Piper is beating a team that they shouldn't. If they beat Lansing in early January coming out of the break, that will be a major wake-up call for KVL fans and many high school hoops followers in Kansas City. Meanwhile, if Basehor can knock off Topeka-Hayden on the road, the Bobcats could overtake Mill Valley in next week's poll.

6. Harmon (3-2)

I'm not sure what to feel about Harmon quite yet. Mike Carson and JaJuan Taylor are the best big man-guard duo in the Kansas City Kansas - Atchison League. However, the Hawks need a third guy to step up and become a consistent force in order for them to win league and get back to Topeka. Carson and Taylor can't do it by themselves. On paper, Harmon can win league. However, they've had some odd results - barely beating Bishop Ward (a team Lansing beat by over 30) and losing to Wyandotte at home. This is a team that can be pretty good this season - but it's time to step up and perform better on a consistent basis.

7. Sumner Academy (2-4)

The Sabres have played a tough schedule to begin the season and freshman Derek Sykes has stepped up early in the year. The senior class at Sumner Academy - Jowell Daniels, Deon Tripp and Alex Garvin - should provide Sumner some experience during the year as they look to turnaround their season.

8. Schlagle (3-3)

Sumner Academy's played a tougher schedule, so I stick Schlagle behind Sumner Academy in light of that. Houston Shackelford, David Patton and Deion Wilson all average double-figures points wise. Still, the Stallions need to beat a good team. They get a shot at Washington to begin the 2013 calendar. Win that game and I'll put the Stallions in the Top 6.

9. Bonner Springs (2-4)

I still think this team can get it together despite the rough two weeks and four straight losses. Austin Twombley, Jordan Jackson and Tyler Howell are all guys who can have good games and come together. A win against Turner entering the break would be very helpful.

10. Wyandotte (2-5)

The young Bulldogs have a very nice win against Harmon this year, but they need more of them to crawl up The Power 14. Sophomores Theo Bass, Deionta Nunnally and Kendall Dale have played well this season, giving Bulldogs fans some hope about a bright future. The sophomore class is the best in KCK in my opinion and they could be the class that finally turns Wyandotte around. Still, the reason they're this low on the power rankings is the five losses, one of which was an ugly 43-point loss to Olathe South.

11. Atchison (2-3)

Here's my first bizarre prediction for 2013 - Atchison is going to beat a KCK team this year. The Red Men have been winless in boys basketball since the formation of the KCKAL. I think they'll snap that streak against someone this year. Tanner Huntington and Tyson Downing have already led Atchison to two wins, though the schedule isn't the strongest. But I think Atchison improved and they'll pull an upset in league this year.

12. Turner (0-5)

I almost put Turner ahead of Atchison, but the zero wins hurt their case even though the Golden Bears have played a tough schedule to begin the year. They played well for three quarters against Basehor. De'Andre Fenrick and Sam Worthy have done a nice job this season for the basketball team. A win against Bonner Springs to enter the holidays would be very nice to have.

13. Tonganoxie (1-4)

Freshman Jack Dale has provided Tonganoxie some nice production this season. Tyler Ford, John Lean and Eric Tate should also help the Chieftains try to climb out of the bottom.

14. Bishop Ward (1-5)

The Cyclones had a pretty tough loss this week, losing a 13-point halftime lead. Still, Cole Henley and Evan Brull are providing Ward fans some nice moments this season. The two underclassmen have played pretty well at times. However, like Harmon, Ward needs a third and fourth guy to step more and more in order for the Cyclones to take the next step and earn some wins.

Shackelford's 20 points lead the way for Schlagle in 11-point win

By DAVID BROX, davidbrox@shukc.com

The Schlagle Stallions boys basketball team hit the road last night and secured their four win of the season a 49 to 38 over St. Joseph Benton.

"The guys showed alot of character leaving that place with a win last night," said Peyton Leslie, head coach of the Stallions. "We are still very inconsistent on the defensive end and crashing the boards. The guys must realize soon that they must give maximum effort on the defensive end."

The Stallions jumped out on the home team 13-2 after the first quarter - this coming despite the first nine foul calls of the game coming against Schlagle.

I am sure the team is very happy being 4-2 heading into the break.  They will next face my number one-ranked Washington Wildcats on Jan. 8th at 7:00 p.m.

KCK Preps will pursue this as our game of the week.

NOTES:
  • Houston Shackelford had 20 points and 5 assists.
  • Willie Bosby and Deion Wilson added 7 points each.

COMMENTARY: Breaking down some of the early troubles for Bonner Springs



By DAVID BROX, davidbrox@shukc.com

As Vernon Birmingham pointed out last night, Bonner Springs is my home away from home.

Considering that two members of the original TeamSHUKC played there made me a fan of the school.  Seeing the team struggle this bad is disheartening and I want to offer some analysis on what I have seen.

It should be noted there isn't a lot of positive things to say, so while I respect the players and coaches, this isn't fixed without having tough conversations.  I hope this is taken as it is intended.

1.  Bonner will need to realize that they have two teams. 

One is when Tyler Howell is on the court and the other is when he is not.

Playing aggressive defense with Howell on the court has not been good.  This is no more evident than when teams utilize the pick and roll with the man that Howell is guarding.  It turns into a pick your poison situation.  If you switch, then you have a small guard trying to hold a big in the post.  If you switch, you have the 6'9" Howell holding a guard.  Chase Younger exploited this matchup over and over in the Basehor game and we saw it again last night with Harper and Long.

When Howell is on the floor I would play exclusive 2-3 or 3-2 zone.  I want this young man to be a presence at the rim to alter shots and rebound.  You have the guards quick enough to move along the three-point line in Brandon Moore, Jason Van Maren and Austen Twombley.

2.  Hack a Howell was in full effect. 

Howell was a huge presence in the post but it became very clear that Piper head coach Steve Wallace was deep enough and content to foul him at the rim.  Going into the game, he leads the team with 19 free throw attempts while only making seven.

I pay a ton of attention to players at the free-throw line.  I nit picked Vernon Vaughn from the 8th grade about his habits at the free throw line and the results turned out pretty good.  The staff at Bonner does a great job with film and I would be more than happy to break him down at the line and offer some things to work on.

He went to the line I would guess 12 to 14 times last night.  If this can be figured out, he could easily average 15 to 20 points a game.

3.  Point guard play simply must improve.

During the game last night, we discussed the importance of point guard play.  I compare this position on the basketball court to that of the quarterback in football.  It is difficult to win basketball games with a negative assist to turnover ratio.  The issues however go a bit deeper for the Braves.

It is essential that a player on each possession - whether it is one person or four - to dribble the ball up the court and start the offense.  I mentioned several times in Paola and last night that Bonner is starting their offense too far out on the court.  Piper's pressure defense had a lot to do with that, but if things are going to improve, this has to be solved.

So the answer in my opinion is in what I just said.  Brandon Moore has been the primary ball handler, but this young man needs to have some pressure relieved.  It is clear in his body language that he is frustrated.  He is giving 100 percent effort but again pressing, which is not yielding the results the team needs.  Get him off the ball and rotate the PG duties or go strictly by the matchups the game present.

If Twombley has the best match to get the ball up the court and start the offense then so be it.

4.  Bombs away!

It would be simple to say lets get Jordan Jackson and Twombley more good looks from three but, until we can simply start the offense that won't be possible.  It may come down to working the offense specifically through these two in regards to getting the offense started.  It is not ideal, but there are plenty of sets you can run with them at the point.

Jackson is playing big this season and it isn't yielding him a ton of quality looks from the three-point line.  The young man had a 7 3-pointer game last season so we have to figure out how to get him free.  Jackson made his first three of the season last night according to MaxPreps numbers.  Going into the game last night he had only taken four shots from the three-point line.  He should be taking four a game!

Twombley is a stat stuffer averaging 12 points, 4 assists, just under 4 rebounds and 2.6 steals.  My initial reaction was that he needs to try and do more.  Volume scoring however is not the answer.  Of all the things that I would like to see change, Twombley isn't one of them at this time.  His biggest benefit would be seeing the initial three things addressed.

If they can get into a flow in their offense, Jackson is able to stretch the court and Howell becomes a legit presence in the paint, then Twombley will natually see his numbers improve.

I write this article as a wanna be journalist, broadcaster and fan for the Bonner Braves.  My desire to see all of the teams in our area improve and have some success.  I hope the players from Bonner work hard heading into Thursday and over the holiday break.

Photos provided by Kelly Oaks

KCK Preps Prospect - Matt McDonald (Piper)

by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com



Matt McDonald completed his senior season in style.  With just over 900 yards and 19 TD's he was a key leader on this Piper team that won a Regional Championship in Kansas 4A.

McDonald has a fantastic stop and go move and has a nose for the goalline inside the 5.  He has the power as well to move the pile to get those extra yards and the quickness to hit a big play.

Where McDonald may not get enough credit however is on the defensive side of the football.  He had 3 INT's for the Pirates and because of his ability to stop and go, he provided tight coverage in the Pirate secondary.

Check out McDonald's 2012 highlights.