FRIDAY, NOV. 18
HELIAS VS. PRIORY AT BLUE SPRINGS SOUTH, 2 P.M.—The Class 2 state semifinals make their Kansas City area debut as the top-ranked Rebels (25-0) continue on their quest for their second state championship. Helias (19-6-2) has shutout its last two opponents. The winner will play for the state title at 4 p.m. on Saturday. The loser will play for third-place at noon.
LEE’S SUMMIT WEST VS. DE SMET AT BLUE SPRINGS SOUTH, 4 P.M.— De Smet (23-4-1), the top ranked team in Class 3, takes on the team that did the unthinkable. Lee’s Summit West (24-6) knocked off Rockhurst in the district championship game. Rockhurst hadn’t lost a district championship match since the Reagan administration. The winner of this match will play for the Class 3 state championship at 6 p.m. on Saturday. The loser will play for third-place at noon.
CBC AT SLUH, 7 P.M.—This is it folks. The game to end all games. The matchup is delicious. The teams are primed to perform. The weather forecast is somewhere between perfect and delightful. When SLUH (9-3) hosts CBC (12- 0), it will do so in the Class 6 semifinals with a berth in the state championship game on the line. The winner gets to go downtown and take its shot at a ring. CBC has never won a state title. SLUH has one, which it won in 1970. This is the first time SLUH has advanced to the semifinals since 1999. CBC last made the title game in 2006. Get there early as parking and seats will be scarce. As the kids say, it’s going to be bananas.
SATURDAY, NOV. 19
KIRKWOOD AT HAZELWOOD EAST, 1:30 P.M.—My pick to win the state championship faces its stiffest test yet as Kirkwood (11-0) tussles with Suburban North power Hazelwood East (8-4). The Pioneers enter the game with five shutouts and two other games where they gave up just seven points. The Spartans are here after taking Parkway Central to the woodshed and obliterating the Colts. This game is chockfull of history as Kirkwood’s season has come to a crushing end against Hazelwood East more than once. The last time these two teams met at East was 2004, and the loaded Pioneers of Jeremy Maclin and Mike McNeil saw their dream season end in a loss. In 2008, the Spartans did the trick again, this time sending Kirkwood home after hosting at Ritenour. Hazelwood East went on to win the Class 5 championship that year.
MICDS AT FARMINGTON, 1:30 P.M.—The Rams are taking a road trip to face their toughest opponent yet. Farmington (11-1) hasn’t scored less than 31 points in the playoffs and scored just that many in the fourth quarter of last week’s quarterfinal against Gateway Tech. MICDS (12-0) has found a way to meet every challenge so far this season. The resolve of this team will be tested by the Knights.
OSAGE AT JOHN BURROUGHS, 1:30 P.M.—Look who’s back! The Bombers (12-1) are knocking on the door of the Edward Jones Dome for the second straight year. After last season’s runner-up finish, no one knew how the Bombers would handle transitioning under first-year head coach Gus Frerotte. Now we know. Burroughs has been just fine. The Bombers draw Osage (13-0), which put up 61 points in last week’s quarterfinal.
THURSDAY, NOV. 24
WEBSTER GROVES AT KIRKWOOD, NOON—It’s Turkey Day! The 98th annual game between blood rivals Kirkwood and Webster Groves promises to be a classic. If Kirkwood does win Saturday at Hazelwood East, this game will be a junior varsity special. But that’s not all bad. When the JV teams get together the younger players get to take the stage under the wildest of atmospheres. Playing in such conditions can only make them better so when it’s time for them to suit up for the varsity, they’ll have an experience that few programs can match. If Kirkwood were to lose its semifinal, this would then be a varsity game. It would also be the first Turkey Day for Webster quarterback Rayshawn Simmons. Tickets are $7 in advance, $10 at the gate.