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December 06th, 2021

machiashotinlanejcMachia Mullens puts up a shot while being fouled Tuesday against Junction City. Mullens scored 23 points to lead the Lady Redskins to a 58-23 win, and Liberal advanced to the Sub-State championship Friday in The Big House. L&T photo/Earl WattBy EARL WATT

Leader & Times

The Lady Redskins  (21-0) won their fourth consecutive first-round playoff game Tuesday with a 54-23 win over Junction City and advanced to the Sub-State championship game Friday when Liberal hosts Manhattan (11-10).

Machia Mullens and Katie Horyna looked like the Div. I signees they are. Mullens led the Lady Redskins with 23 points, and Horyna had 20.

Mullens scored nine of her 23 in the first quarter despite a triangle-and-one defense from Junction City trying to slow down Mullens and Horyna.

Fouls mounted early for Junction City when they challenged Mullens in the lane, and Mullens completed back-to-back baskets while being fouled and made both free throws.

Mullens made three of four free throws in the first quarter to go along with three baskets. Audrey Gilmore hit a three, and Horyna added a pair of baskets for an early 16-7 lead.

Junction City was within five late in the first quarter at 12-7, but the Lady Redskins went on a 17-0 run that included six points from Mullens, five points from Horyna, four points from Reagan Watt and two points from Aubrey Warden, and Liberal had a 29-7 lead.

Liberal led 31-10 at half, and the third quarter was dominated by Mullens and Horyna who combined for all of Liberal’s 13 points in the period, and the Lady Redskins jumped out to a 44-18 lead.

Liberal continued to pull away in the fourth quarter including a free throw from Reece Hay, a pair of baskets from Watt, and a shot from Mullens that gave the Lady Redskins a 30-point lead and enacted the running clock.

Horyna dominated the final four minutes, knocking down a three, a two and a pair of free throws in the 58-23 win.

Mullens led with 23 points, Horyna had 20, and Watt scored eight.

The season came to an end for Junction City at 3-18, but coach Tim Testa believed the Lady Blue Jays are working to establish a successful program.

    • Special to the Leader & Times

    destinyatr6driveSeward County Community College women's basketball defeated Colby Community College 63-46 on Saturday night to advance to the semifinals of the Region VI tournament. Leilani Augmon provided 16 points, five rebounds to lead the Lady Saints to victory. Seward will face off against Butler Community College on Monday scheduled tip-off is for 3 PM at the United Wireless Arena in Dodge City. 

    Both teams struggled offensively in the first quarter and after the first two minutes, the Lady Saints led 9-6. Colby connected on 2 of 18 from the field and Seward shot just 4 of 11 from the field. 

    In the second quarter, the Lady Saints started to separate themselves from the Trojans with a full-court press. Seward had four steals in the quarter that led to transition baskets and they took a 28-19 lead at halftime. Alanis Hill came off the bench and led Seward with six points in the first half.


seward logoROBERT PIERCE • Leader & Times


At its Feb. 18 meeting, the Seward County Commission approved a new compensation for employees, along with an adjustment for sheriff’s officers wages.

Monday, the commission is expected to hear from Administrator April Warden about a request for an additional budget to allow for pay increases for 29 employees in that department.

Information in the agenda packet said after the increases were approved for detention officers and deputies, county officials were requested to review pay for tenured employees in those positions to mitigate pay compensation.

“After meeting with the sheriff to review tenured pay, it became evident that the estimate did not include the sheriff, undersheriff, captain, detective and two additional new hires in the jail,” the information said. “Therefore, the estimate was incorrect.”

The information said $75,000 was approved at the last meeting, but the final total with tenured employees to include all 29 employees is just less than $105,000, meaning an additional $30,000 would need to be approved.

angels for animals donationGreat Plaints Angels for Animals representative Gary Dunnam recieves a $500 donation from Renee Haralson, owner of American Abstract and Title Specialists, and Dunnam passes the donation to Steve Leete. Courtesy photosSpecial to the Leader & Times


Great Plains Angels for Animals works for the people of Liberal day and night every day of the week to save, protect and respect the rights of animals that inhabit the community whether they are a personal pet or homeless stray. 

Liberal does have an over population of animals in the streets, and GPAA works behind the scenes along with the animal shelter every day to find homes for these animals and make Liberal a better place to live. The most recent efforts have been reducing cat colonies. The only way to reduce cat colonies is through trap-spay/neuter-release (TNR) into the same colony. If cats are simply eliminated, others will fill the void and the colony will grow in size.  This is known as the vacuum effect.

 On Jan. 17, the organization suffered a devastating blow. 

Lady Redskin poster, click here!

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votedBond supporters ‘blown away’ by margin of approval


Leader & Times

School board member Nick Hatcher is a tall man. Even so, at the bond election watch party, he couldn’t stop jumping in elation as early voting results arrived. Hatcher wasn’t the only person excited about the 78 percent double “yes” Liberal voters delivered at the ballot box. Lisa Hatcher, organizer for the grassroots group Citizens for Responsible Growth, couldn’t stop looking at the numbers on her iPhone. 

The final tally for for the $127 million bond issue listed 2,023 “yes” votes, with 632 opposed. 

Final tally for the half-cent sales tax administered by the city of Liberal was 1,985 “yes” and 539 “no.” A 76 percent approval was far more than either husband or wife had dared to hope for — and Lisa was momentarily overcome as she addressed the group moments later. Quoting President John F. Kennedy, Lisa said that “Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education. The human mind is our fundamental resource,” then paused as tears threatened to fall, before she thanked the volunteers who helped get out the vote.  

The Hatchers were not the only supporters filled with shock and awe. 

“I feel so proud,” said Liberal resident and CRG member Tano Tovilla. “It’s amazing how people worked together to better this community. I’ve never seen a vote like this.”

Tovilla, a Mexican national who is just one year away from applying for his U.S. citizenship, spent a good part of Tuesday ferrying coworkers and friends to the election site at the Seward County Activity Center. 

“I made five trips,” he said. “I’m not allowed to vote because I’m still just a resident. This is the way I could be involved. I live here, I pay taxes here, I’m raising my children here and I wanted to help however I could.”

statebowlersCooper Clumskey and Caitlyn Carlile qualified for the Class 6A State Bowling Tournament. L&T photo/Earl WattSpecial to the Leader & Times

The Liberal boys finished sixth overall with a pinfall of 2910 at the regional bowling tournament Monday at Billy’s Ayr Lanes. 

Cooper Clumsky finished top for the Redskins with a 573 series and qualified for the Class 6A Individual State Tournament. In addition, four Redskins finished in the top half of individual scores for the Regional Tournament. 

The girls finished seventh with a total pinfall of 2288. 

Caitlyn Carlile finished top for the Lady Redskins with a 488 series to qualify for the Class 6A Individual State Tournament. 

The state tournament will take place March 5 at North Rock Lanes in Wichita. 

whitneyhaywinspancakeraceWhitney Hay (13) leads the Liberal leg of the International Pancake Race down Lincoln Avenue in the final stretch of the race Tuesday. Hay won the Liberal leg easily with a time of 69 seconds but could not beat Olney, England’s top runner Katie Godof who turned in a time of 66 seconds. L&T photo/Earl WattBy EARL WATT

Leader & Times

Maria Alba set the tone early and led most of the International Pancake Race Tuesday morning, but Whitney Hay picked up the pace in the final block and a half, passing Alba and pulling away to win Liberal’s leg of friendly competition with Olney with a time of 69 seconds.

Her time was not good enough to top Olney’s Katie Godof who won the international competition with a time of 66 seconds.

Hay grew up in Liberal watching the Pancake Race and was a one-time kids racer.

Now she is the winner of the Liberal leg of the race.

Hay graduated from Liberal High School last year and is a student at Seward County Community College.

“It feels great,” Hay said after the win. “I love where we live, and I love this tradition we have.”

Hay’s late breakaway made the difference, winning the race by 15 yards in front of second-place Alba. Mikayla Knudsen came in third in a pack that followed behind Hay.

And Hay had a familiar voice pushing her to victory.

2 20 20 tipped truckA truck dropping sand on snowy roadways near the corner of Western and Pancake Boulevard lays on its side in front of the Toot-n-Totum earlier today. The vehicle tipped over with its plow in the air and fell on the iconic checkered horse statue in front of the convenience store. An early morning snow led to slick conditions and opening delays throughout Liberal including a 10 a.m. start to school. L&T photo/Jimmy HamptonELLY GRIMM • Leader & Times


Inclement weather caused an accident on West Pancake Boulevard early Thursday morning. 

Emergency personnel were called to the scene shortly before 9 a.m. Thursday. 

“Officers were dispatched to the 2400 block of West Pancake Boulevard for a reported accident.  Responding officers found a Kansas Department of Transportation snow plow on its side in the eastbound lane in front of the Toot N Totum convenience store,” a release from Liberal Police Department Capt. Pat McClurg noted. “Investigating officers found that a 30-year-old male was driving a 2014 Freightliner west on Pancake Boulevard throwing sand when the vehicle lost traction on the icy road and began to slide.  The vehicle slid across the eastbound lanes and struck the curb.  The vehicle flipped onto its side when the tires caught the curb.” 

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