League play is nearing full swing this spring, and some of the Wichita area's top high school teams and players are coming to the forefront.
Here is the recap from April 2-7:
With the stands packed to the brim with fans from 18 schools, Kapaun pulled one of the upsets of the season.
The Crusaders held off East by 15 points to win the Northwest Invitational on Saturday. The Aces are the defending Class 6A champions.
The meet came down to the final event, the 400-yard freestyle relay. Kapaun's crew of Katherine Baldessari, Annabelle Brown, Natalie Knapp and Claire Conover won it by 43 hundredths of a second against Carroll and 53 hundredths over East.
It was the only event a Kapaun relay team or individual won Saturday.
The Crusaders finished seventh in the Class 5-1A meet last season but returned a deep lineup. Sixth was Kapaun's worst finish in any event and multiple swimmers grabbed points-receiving positions in nine events.
The finish and attendance made for an electric atmosphere.
East's Gillian Pierce-Butt (200 freestyle) and Astrid Dirkzwager (200 individual medley, 100 backstroke); Derby's Megan Keil (50 and 100 freestyle), Heights' Brianna Reece (diving), Carroll's Sydney Schmidt (100 butterfly) and Lexie Shelton (100 breaststroke); and West's Maci McCullough (500 freestyle) were the area's individual winners.
McPherson is making a name for itself in the pool.
The Bullpups took first at the Winfield Invitational, finishing 97 points ahead of Winfield, behind strong outings from a few swimmers.
Maggie Leaf posted a state qualifying time in winning the 100 backstroke. Megan Cutting won the 200 individual medley and 100 breaststroke.
McPherson finished fourth at the event last year.
Rose Hill's Dakota Bastin (200 freestyle), Derby's Megan Keil (50 freestyle, 100 butterfly), Campus' Blake Rhea (diving), Winfield's Kayla Wampler (100 freestyle) and Winfield's Megan Dougherty (500 freestyle) were the other area individual winners.
Maize at Maize South
The Eagles have proven their worth.
After beating Northwest, Derby and Carroll, Maize beat rival Maize South 2-0 on Thursday on the road. The defense was outstanding, particularly in the first half.
The Mavericks got only two shots on target in the first half and eight for the game, and many of those were from outside the 18-yard box. And when Maize needed a boost offensively, the defense stepped up again.
Senior captain center back Ashlyn Lakin had two assists, both on flip throw-ins. Forward Rachel Marshall scored the first with a header for her fourth goal of the season. The second goal hit off two Maize South defenders and scooted in for an own-goal.
The barrage doesn't stop though. Maize traveled to 4-1 Goddard on Monday.
East's successful week
After a shaky start to the season, the Aces hit their stride Tuesday against North.
Although the Redskins were without the area's top averaging scorer, Nayeli Gallo, East won 4-0 with three goals in the second half.
East's top scorer Anahy Guevara was in top form. She made dangerous cuts to goal, and her teammates often found her with the through ball. Guevara finished with a hat trick.
The Aces had a tougher test Thursday against Kapaun but drew 1-1. Guevara scored another goal, her ninth this season, and the East defense held one of the most potent offenses in the area to just one goal.
All this comes after an 0-3 start for East with losses to Goddard, Derby and Northwest. The Aces face Southeast on Tuesday at home.
Circle at McPherson
The Thunderbirds put together one of the more eye-catching results of the week.
On the road, Circle held McPherson to a 1-1 draw Thursday. The Bullpups entered 4-1-0, and Circle was 2-2-0, but the T-Birds' Lainey Perez served as hero.
Midway through the second half, Brooklyn Hunter played Perez, and she buried it to tie the score.
Credit must go to Circle's defense. McPherson entered with the top scoring offense among all City League and AVCTL teams at 5.75 goals per game.
Still, despite the Thunderbirds' record, they have a plus-13 goal differential through six games with a losing record, indicating more positive results might be on the way.
Derby at Eisenhower
Brianna Moore has proven to be a problem for opposing defenses, and her latest installment of dominance came Tuesday.
The Derby striker scored the game-winning goal in the Panthers' 2-1 overtime victory against Eisenhower. It was her 11th goal in six games.
Moore has more then half of Derby's goals this season and has helped lead from the front to get the Panthers back on track after a semifinal loss in the Titan Classic.
Derby plays Northwest on Monday at home.
South at Northwest
Few had better games last week than Emily Jensen on Tuesday.
Jensen scored four goals against South in a 6-0 victory at home for Northwest. She quadrupled her goal total.
After dropping their first game of the season 4-1 to Maize, the Grizzlies have not allowed a goal since. They beat East in penalty kicks, Dodge City by four and South by six.
Although the scoring didn't start strong, Jensen has helped lead the charge back toward the top of the City League. Northwest finished runner-up in 2017.
The Grizzlies play at Derby on Monday.
Andale showed why, and Carroll made its statement Friday.
The Indians are the defending Class 4A champions on the boys and girls side. Although the girls finished atop the standings, the boys fell 113 points short to the Eagles.
Andale took first in six events in a field that boasted some of the area's best teams. But Carroll just proved to be too deep at too many events for any boys team to keep it close.
Boys individual winners: Tayshian Crough, Hutchinson (110 and 300-meter hurdles); Hunter Degarmo, Hutchinson (discus); Jack Ebright, Carroll (triple jump); Grant Fairchild, Andale (javelin); Sam Garrison, Carroll (shot put); Matt Harding, Carroll (1,600 meters); Ethan Hull, Carroll (pole vault); Jason Irwin, Carroll (800); Auggie Iseman, Carroll (3,200); Trey Jones, Hutchinson (long jump); Cole Landers, Andale (high jump); Joe Rohleder, Carroll (400); Ezekiel Seamster, Hutchinson (100); Larry Wilson, Valley Center (200)
Girls individual winners: Kalli Anderson, Newton (100, 200); Taylor Antonowich, Newton (400); Jayla Bynum, Hutchinson (shot put); Katy Commons, Andale (javelin); Aimee Davis, Clearwater (3,200); Jaden Eck, Andale (pole vault); Morgan Geist, Andale (discus); Kylee Harman, Clearwater (800); Maggie Remsberg, Newton (100 hurdles); Abby Smarsh, Andale (300 hurdles); Claire Winter, Carroll (1,600)
Home-track advantage or not, Maize swept its home invitational.
The Eagles took first in the boys and girls team competitions, edging Salina South and Junction City, respectively. In a field loaded with City League stars, the hosts took the top spots.
Boys area winners: K'Vonte' Baker, Heights (long jump); Adrian Brown, Derby (110, 300 hurdles); Kael Ecord, Maize (800); Caleb Grill, Maize (high jump); Marcus Hicks, Northwest (discus, shot put); Nathan Jones, Maize (1,600, 3,200); Phillip Landrum, South (200); Jack Lynch, Southeast (pole vault); Ollie McGee, Southeast (100)
Girls area winners: Megan Keil, Derby (800); Jamila Love, East (shot put); Ashante Pierce, Northwest (triple jump); Carson Pierce, Maize (1,600); Anna Reimer, Maize (3,200); Blair Sebastian, Northwest (long jump)
It took time because of the weather, but winners were crowned in Mulvane.
Winfield won the boys team competition over Circle, and Augusta took first on the girls side, holding off Wellington.
Boys winners: Ryan Derry, Circle (800, 1,600); Matt Everett, Winfield (discus, shot put); Jarrett Harker, Circle (javelin); Coban Honey, Augusta (high jump); Eli Jacobson, Circle (3,200); Chase Milledge, Mulvane (pole vault); Sebastien Morrissey, Winfield (400 meters); Jack Mull, Winfield (110, 300 hurdles); Dayden Price, Mulvane (100, 200); Jayden Tate, Winfield (long jump, triple jump)
Girls winners: Nateleigh Cantu, Augusta (high jump); Claire Hallmark, Augusta (100, 200); Bri Hulse, Winfield (1,600, 3,200); Kelsi Kelly, Circle (400); Elise LeGrand, Wellington (pole vault); Tori Mcginnis, Circle (100, 300 hurdles); Taylor McGlothlin, Wellington (long jump, triple jump); Taylor Meyer, Wellington (javelin); Anna Moon, Mulvane (800); Abbee Rhodes, Augusta (discus, shot put)
Halstead at Smoky Valley
Ben Weldy put together a masterpiece Monday in a 10-0 victory.
The 6-foot-4 senior pitcher threw a no-hitter against Halstead, striking out 10.
Weldy got through six innings on 93 pitches; 49 were strikes. Although he walked seven, he got plenty of run support, mostly from himself. He went 2-for-3 at the plate with four RBIs.
Vikings' Zach Able and Brandon Malm combined to go 6 for 8 with a pair of RBIs and runs scored.
It was Smoky Valley's first win of the season.
Derby at Eisenhower
The Panthers came away with a clean sweep.
After beating Eisenhower 5-3 in the first game, Derby came to life at the plate in Game 2, a 12-10 victory.
Jackson Syring went 4 for 7 with three RBIs and three runs scored over two games.
There was equally trustworthy pitching at times. Grant Adler took the mound in Game 1 and went four innings with three hits, two runs and four strikeouts. Weston Murrow finished the deal, striking out six in just three innings.
In Game 2, Brayden Paxton entered in relief of Jarrett Bowman, and Paxton put away 10 batters and allowed just one hit.
Derby plays at Maize South on Tuesday.
Augusta vs. Circle
Thursday belonged to Gracie Johnson.
The Augusta pitcher allowed just one hit in seven innings and struck out 17 in the Orioles' 1-0 victory.
Circle entered the game outscoring opponents 50-19 but could not find the ball against Johnson. And to top off Johnson's stellar night, she knocked in the game's only run with an RBI single in the bottom of the second inning.
Bluestem at Humboldt
Ashtyn Jurging had it working beyond the fence Tuesday.
In Bluestem's doubleheader against Humboldt, Jurging went 6 for 7 at the plate with two home runs, a triple and five RBIs.
Jurging's strong night wasn't enough though. Bluestem dropped both games 11-5 and 9-8.
Bishop Carroll Invitational
Competing against some of Kansas' best, Class 2A shined.
Defending state champion Salina Sacred Heart took the team title at the Bishop Carroll Invitational on Monday at Auburn Hills Golf Course.
The Knights held off Kapaun by 4 strokes behind an impressive 76 from Grant Herrenbruck in poor weather. Herrenbruck won the individual competition.
Other top individual finishers included Kapaun's trio of Ben Spicer, Keaton Eberthart and Austin Wilbert, who shot 78, 79 and 80 respectively and finished within the top 10. Maize South's Adam Kasitz finished tied for seventh with an 80. Arkansas City's Trent Sutherland and East's Shamir Khan rounded out the top 10.
Just three days after swarming Wichita, Sacred Heart doubled up in McPherson.
The Knights won against at the McPherson Invite on Thursday at Turkey Creek Golf Course. They held off Hays by 12 strokes, despite Hays' Tradgon McCrae winning the individual competition at 2-over 72.
Hutchinson's Max Ontjes (82), Arkansas City's Trent Sutherland (84), McPherson's Colton Geren (86), Ark City's Jace Womack (86) and Newton's Zach Engelken (87) all placed in the top 20.
Arkansas City Invitational
With balls swerving around the courts because of fierce winds Tuesday, it wasn't the most ideal day for tennis.
Class 4A champion Collegiate came won with 81 points, holding off Andover (77) and Andover Central (74).
Collegiate's Cho defeated Arkansas City's Klaassen 8-4 in the singles final. Andover Central's doubles team of Reilly and Thompson finished with an 8-2 win against Carroll's Stranghonor and Steven in the championship match.