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The two top high school teams from the Kansas City area, the KC Jr. Blues and St. Thomas Aquinas, played their annual rivalry game this past weekend at St. Thomas Aquinas Stadium on Saturday.
The Blues rode a superb effort to become winners, 43-27. The first half
went back and forth, and was close going into halftime with the Jr. Blues
leading 12-10. But just before the halftime whistle the Jr. Blues got an
opportunistic try to take a 19-10 lead.
With the momentum, the Jr. Blues scored two quick tries in the first five minutes of the second half to go up 31-10. Aquinas struck back with a try to make the score 31-15, but the Jr. Blues took control of the game with two to lead 43-15 with 10 minutes to go.
A somewhat injury-hit Aquinas kept at it and scored twice in the latter part of the game to make it 43-27.
“We have a fair amount of injuries but I am not sure it would have helped much,” said St. Thomas Aquinas Head Coach Tim Kluempers. “Their forwards controlled the game and we made too many errors to be successful against a team of the Jr. Blues' quality. I knew we had to play the perfect game and get the ball out wide to our backs to have success, and we could not get it done. All credit to the Jr. Blues; they deserve to win.”
Jr. Blues Head Coach Brian O’Laughlin said the key for his club was their
solid forward play.
Both teams will be playing in their respective HS National Invitational Championship in May in Elkhart, Ind., Aquinas in the single-school bracket, and the Jr. Blues in the HS club bracket. Also slated to play in the club bracket is Park Hill South, also from the Kansas City region. This week Park Hill will face St. Thomas Aquinas, a team that beat them 12-3 on March 30.