Boys basketball team garners numerous individual awards and honors 


Ben Cohen

The Lawrence High bench erupts in celebration during a February 19 contest with Free State. Lawrence High came away with a dominate 56-40 victory.

By Andrew Phalen, Sports Editor

After finishing third at the KSHSAA 6A state tournament and winning the Sunflower League, many boys basketball players have received numerous individual accolades. 

With a 20-2 record, head coach Mike Lewis took home Sunflower League Coach of the Year, All-Area Coach of the Year by the Lawrence-Journal World, and was a finalist for 6A Coach of the Year. Lewis led the Chesty Lions to a school record seventh straight regional championship. 

After graduating almost every varsity contributor from last season’s 18-5 team, many thought Lewis’ streak would come to an end. But while replacing numerous starters and contributors, the Lions were able to return to their first semifinal since 2017. 

“Coach Lewis knows what he wants from his team,” said senior manager Jelani Ragins.”What I think sets him apart from other coaches is that he gets it done while continuing to build a strong and hard working program.”

Ragins was also recognized with a MidCo Sports Network Game Ball because of a key mistake he caught late in regulation of a game versus Shawnee Mission East. 

Ragins noticed that the Lancers had six players on the court on an LHS inbounds pass with the Lions trailing by two points with less than a second left to play. Ragins alerted a coach who yelled to the officials and made the call, allowing the Lions to shoot two free throws and send the game to overtime, where the Lions went on to earn the victory. 

Senior Zeke Mayo took home several individual honors. Mayo was named Sunflower League and LJWorld All-Area Player of the Year. He was also named to the Sports in Kansas All-Class First Team and was the runner-up for Kansas Player of the Year. 

A four year letterman, Mayo averaged 21.2 points per game, 6.8 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game, including a heroic 41-point game versus the future state champion Blue Valley North. Mayo is signed to play basketball for South Dakota State next season.  

Junior Pearse Long also made second team All-Sunflower League and the All-Area Team. Senior Jackson Dooley, as well as juniors Truman Juelsgaard and Avion Nelson were named All-League and All-Area honorable mentions. 

While they did not receive any individual recognitions, juniors Jack Ryan and Grant Cleavinger, and seniors Corban Oberzan and Ntense Obono also played pivotal roles during the team’s season.  

Even though the season ended with a heartbreaking 71-63 loss to Blue Valley North in the semifinals, the team exceeded all expectations and were fantastic representatives of Lawrence High School. While they weren’t always the biggest or most talented team on the court, these Lions came together and competed until the final buzzer sounded.