SM Northwest boys lead charge of KC high school hoops teams to state tournaments

The Shawnee Mission Northwest boys lead a charge of Kansas City high school basketball teams to this week’s Kansas state tournaments.

The Cougars are bidding to become the first wire-to-wire undefeated hoops team from the KC metro in 10 years.

Here’s a recap of some of this weekend’s substate games and a look ahead to the Kansas state tourneys for boys and girls:

6A Boys: SM Northwest 65, SM South 42:

Shawnee Mission Northwest will be taking its perfect record to the Kansas boys high school basketball state tournament in Wichita this week.

The Cougars shook off league rival Shawnee Mission South for a 65-42 win in a Class 6A substate final on Saturday. Star sophomore center Ethan Taylor finished with 18 points, 10 rebounds and six blocks for Northwest, now 22-0 and the No. 1 seed in Kansas Class 6A.

Northwest led 30-26 at halftime and blew the doors off in the third quarter: A 17-6 run all but put the game away at 47-32 entering the final period. Junior Keaton Wagler had 15 points and 11 rebounds for the Cougars; Van Collins added 13 points for Northwest.

“It took a little bit, but we got things going in the second half,” Northwest coach David Birch said. “We’ve been to state three years in a row now and we’re wanting to finish it off. But we’ve got one game at a time, and the guys have played like that all year.”

Connor Kerrigan finished with a team-high 14 points for Shawnee Mission South (14-8).

Shawnee Mission Northwest opens the quarterfinals against Wichita East (7-15) at 2 p.m. Thursday at Charles Koch Arena in Wichita. The Cougars are aiming to become the Metro’s first undefeated team since Lansing (25-0) in 2014.

5A boys: Piper 67, BV Southwest 57

Piper trailed the Timberwolves 33-30 at halftime but cranked into gear after intermission.

Senior Devin Kerr and sophomore Derrick Jackson combined for 22 second-half points. Kerr finished with 16 points, while Jackson netted a team-high 19. Junior PJ Moore added 12.

“We had to shake off a little nerves and get everyone loosened up in the second half,” Piper coach Steve Wallace said. “Once we got back in the flow, everyone played better. It’s great for everyone and the community to be heading to state.”

Tate Everard paced Blue Valley Southwest (14-8) with 15 points; Dylan Dunn added 11.

The Pirates (19-3) will take on fellow United Kansas Conference foe Shawnee Heights (19-3) in the first round at 8 p.m. Wednesday at White Auditorium in Emporia.

5A girls: Aquinas 64, St. James 42

St. Thomas Aquinas made sure St. James Academy wasn’t going to trip up its state tournament streak.

The Saints advanced to their 30th consecutive state tourney. Kelsey Schenck led the way with a game-high 21 points, while Tatum Grimes added 14.

St. James had beaten Aquinas in its previous meeting, 55-53, and trailed just 29-23 at halftime. But the Saints opened the second half with an 18-8 run to put the game away at 47-31 entering the final period.

Reese Messer led the Thunder (15-7) with 21 points.

St. Thomas Aquinas (16-6) will take on Maize South (21-1) on Thursday at 6 p.m. in Emporia.

5A girls: De Soto 62, Shawnee Heights 47

De Soto throttled Shawnee Heights in its substate final to advance to the 5A state tournament. Violet Conley led De Soto with 22 points and fellow senior Amanda Tower added 18.

De Soto built a 28-19 lead at halftime and entered the fourth quarter with a 48-35 cushion.

The Wildcats (19-3) will take on fellow United Kansas Conference foe Seaman (20-2) in the first round.


Class 6A girls quarterfinals:


  • 2 p.m.: (1) Shawnee Mission South vs. (8) Manhattan

  • 4 p.m.: (4) Olathe South vs. (5) Blue Valley North

  • 6 p.m.: (2) Wichita Heights vs. (7) Washburn Rural

  • 8 p.m.: (3) Derby vs. (6) Shawnee Mission Northwest

Class 5A girls quarterfinals:


  • 2 p.m.: (1) Andover vs. (8) Blue Valley Southwest

  • 4 p.m.: (4) Seaman vs. (5) De Soto

  • 6 p.m.: (2) Maize South vs. (7) St. Thomas Aquinas

  • 8 p.m.: (3) Emporia vs. (6) Bishop Carroll

Class 4A girls quarterfinals:


  • 2 p.m.: (1) Wellington vs. (8) Andale

  • 4 p.m.: (4) McPherson vs. (5) Ottawa

  • 6 p.m.: (2) Fort Scott vs. (7) Clearwater

  • 8 p.m.: (3) Bishop Miege vs. (6) Labette County

Class 6A boys quarterfinals:


  • 2 p.m.: (1) SM Northwest vs. (8) Wichita East

  • 4 p.m.: (4) Olathe North vs. (5) Mill Valley

  • 6 p.m.: (2) Wichita Heights vs. (7) Haysville Campus

  • 8 p.m.: (3) Blue Valley Northwest vs. (6) Wichita Northwest

Class 5A boys quarterfinals:


  • 2 p.m.: (2) Highland Park vs. (7) Andover

  • 4 p.m.: (3) Kapaun Mt. Carmel vs. (7) De Soto

  • 6 p.m.: (1) Maize South vs. (8) Great Bend

  • 8 p.m.: (4) Piper vs. (5) Shawnee Heights

Class 4A boys quarterfinals:


  • 2 p.m. (1) McPherson vs. (8) Fort Scott

  • 4 p.m. (4) Circle vs. (5) Baldwin)

  • 6 p.m. (2) Atchison vs. (7) Rock Creek

  • 8 p.m. (3) Hugoton vs. (6) Abilene

The Star has partnered with 810 Varsity for high school sports coverage. For recaps of substate games, pairings for the state basketball tournaments, brackets and broadcast listings, vist