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Examiner
  • Fast start boosts Tigers past North

  • A three-touchdown lead in the first half Friday proved enough cushion for Lee’s Summit to earn its first conference win this season at Lee’s Summit North, but only after a wild fourth quarter which saw the neighboring rivals combine for seven touchdowns and produce a 42-35 final.

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  • A three-touchdown lead in the first half Friday proved enough cushion for Lee’s Summit to earn its first conference win this season at Lee’s Summit North, but only after a wild fourth quarter which saw the neighboring rivals combine for seven touchdowns and produce a 42-35 final.
    Casey Slaughter didn’t record any of the game’s scores despite logging 37 carries, but he did have two of the biggest plays, running for 7 yards on third-and-3 and 11 yards on third-and-6 to allow the Tigers (2-4 overall, 1-3 Suburban Big Six) to run out the clock at Lee’s Summit North High School.
    For the Broncos, who fell to 1-5 (0-3 conference) after twice battling back to within a touchdown, it illustrated a recurring issue.
    “It’s something we’ve battled all year defensively,” North coach Ty Kohl said. “We’ve gotta find a way to get those offenses off the field. That’s been the difference.”
    Slaughter, a 225-pound junior, finished with 202 yards. Dan McElroy, starting his second game at quarterback in place of sophomore Drew Lock (illness), completed 12 of 19 passes for 202 yards and four touchdowns, three of them to Ian Burch.
    “I thought our kids battled,” Lee’s Summit coach Eric Thomas said. “By no means did we play perfect. We made mistakes, especially in the secondary, but we had kids step up.”
    “We knew going in (Slaughter) was going to have to be a warrior. We moved Colin Aubuchon to the backfield from guard to kind of lead the way, and Jimmie Swain did a great job blocking. I don’t know if anybody noticed, but we had a sophomore at center (Ryan Laddish) the whole second half who hadn’t played center until this year.”
    McElroy had touchdown darts of 9 yards to Aubuchon and 18 and 64 yards to Burch to make it 21-0 in the first half, and Aubuchon’s 1-yard plunge on fourth down made it 28-7 two plays into the fourth.
    Bronco quarterback Matt Brumfield found Brett Conrow for a 50-yard touchdown pass within 20 seconds, but that momentum disappeared as Lee’s Summit first-liner Jimmie Swain snared the onside attempt near midfield and sprinted down the sideline for a touchdown.
    North closed within 35-28 when Josh Caldwell (28 carries, 140 yards) scored from 13 yards out. Jalen Ford hauled in a Brumfield pass for a 62-yard TD.
    The Tigers responded with a five-play scoring drive, capped when McElroy connected with Burch for a 31-yard pass and Burch fell on his own fumble in the end zone with 6:56 left.
    Caldwell, whose 3-yard TD got the Broncos on the board with 26 seconds left in the second quarter, finished a 14-play drive with a 6-yard jaunt at the 3:59 mark. But North couldn’t get the ball back for a last gasp.
    Page 2 of 2 - Brumfield finished 16 of 29 through the air for 280 yards, and Jordan Caldwell had an end zone deflection and an interception to stop two Lee’s Summit threats.
    “We made too many mistakes, and it’s tough to overcome those mistakes,” Kohl said. “We put ourselves in a hole and had a chance to dig ourselves out of it. That’s tough. And we had a couple breaks not go our way.”
     
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