Lee’s Summit West players collectively turned toward the Peve Stadium scoreboard ready to celebrate on Friday. One problem: The lights had faded to black moments earlier, and the score disappeared.
It didn’t matter. The Titans won’t need a scoreboard to remember this one.
In a game billed by both coaches as an instant classic, Lee’s Summit West upended Blue Springs 35-28 in overtime — a heavyweight battle featuring two of Kansas City’s top teams.
Austin Burau caught an 11-yard touchdown for the game-winner in overtime, and the Lee’s Summit West defense made it stick, setting off a frenzy on the Titans’ sideline.
Burau, a senior tight end, caught six passes for a career-high 119 yards and two touchdowns, and he ran for a third score — not a bad performance in the biggest game of his career.
“It’s all about timing,” Burau said with a smile. “I’ve always heard players make plays in big games. I tried to make a few myself.”
He made more than a few, and so did a bevy of other playmakers in two teams full of them.
Lee’s Summit West, 4-0, never trailed in the game and led five times — a misleading statistic considering the two teams were tied for most of the night. They fought to a 7-7 tie at halftime.
The offenses took over in the final two quarters, but neither team scored consecutive touchdowns, instead alternating punches over four quarters and overtime.
The Lee’s Summit West defense ultimately landed the biggest jab — forcing four consecutive incomplete passes from Blue Springs quarterback Wylson Lamb in overtime.
“We knew we could score quick, but we knew Blue Springs could too, so we never felt like any lead was safe,” Titans coach Royce Boehm said. “Just kept hoping one of (the leads) would be enough.”
The first four weren’t. The fifth was the charm.
Blue Springs, 3-1, matched each Lee’s Summit West score in regulation — the last of which seemed to swing all of the momentum toward the Wildcats’ side heading into overtime.
With 2:59 remaining and no timeouts, Blue Springs put together a 76-yard game-tying drive. It finished it off with an 11-yard shovel pass from Lamb to Dalvin Warmack with 30 seconds left on the clock.
Blue Springs kicked the extra point to tie the game — noteworthy because Wildcats coach Kelly Donohoe successfully went for a two-point conversion in a nearly identical situation three years ago to defeat Lee’s Summit West.
“I’m on the sideline thinking about that,” Boehm said. “That’s why we called a timeout. We figured Kelly would have something slick up his sleeve and throw us off-guard again.”
Donohoe settled for the tie, sending the game to overtime.
Lee’s Summit West took the ball first and needed only three plays to go on top for the fifth time. Ryan Williams rushed for 14 yards on the first two plays, setting up Burau’s game-winning catch from quarterback Thomas Ganaden. Williams ran for 78 yards, with 63 of them coming on a fourth-quarter touchdown run to give Lee’s Summit West a 28-21 lead.
Two drives later, Warmack’s score sent to the game to overtime. After a slow start in a defensive-minded opening half, Warmack finished with 182 total yards and three touchdowns.
“We fought our (butts) off, but we just couldn’t get it done,” Donohoe said. “We just needed to make one more play. We didn’t. Those guys deserved to win.”