Benton Smith Sports writer

Benton Smith covers sports and news for The Mirror. Although he hails from the state of North Carolina and graduated from the University of North Carolina, he assures you that neither that place nor the men's basketball team at said university have much or anything to do with him. Benton was a sports writer for the Lawrence Journal-World before coming to Tonganoxie. He is an avid basketball fan and football devotee but finds himself of late enjoying baseball more than he ever thought possible — he is 99 percent certain that is because the Kansas City Royals are actually competitive. Since joining The Mirror staff in February of 2008, Benton has learned that all high school sports, their athletes and coaches are pretty much a blast to cover.

Recent stories

A Devil, you say: Ottawa standout Semi Ojeleye says Duke best fit
January 14, 2013
State’s top-ranked returns to area for 2013 Basehor-Linwood Invitational.
Head injuries still on minds: Area schools explore safeguards for athletes
02:04 p.m., July 25, 2012 Updated 12:00 a.m.
The words themselves are jarring: traumatic brain injury. That phrase is the simplest definition of a concussion. No wonder the affliction has become a growing concern in the realm of sports, particularly in football.
Braves score 36 unanswered to beat Chieftains
September 30, 2011
It had been three weeks since the Tonganoxie High football team last led in a game when the Chieftains entered the half with a precarious one-point advantage Friday night at David Jaynes Stadium.
Tonganoxie football coach Mark Elston resigns
12:05 p.m., August 31, 2011 Updated 06:56 p.m.
Tonganoxie High football coach Mark Elston has submitted his resignation.
Braves’ 5 2nd-half goals beat Chieftains
August 30, 2011
A match that had the first-half makings of a tight Kaw Valley League contest turned into a mini-blowout going away Tuesday when Bonner Springs scored five second-half goals.
THS trainer excited to see head-injury act passed in Kansas
August 23, 2011
Tonganoxie High athletic trainer Mark Padfield did plenty during his summer vacation this year, but the highlight of his break came almost immediately after the school year ended.
Tonganoxie golfers represent KVL, finish 2nd at state championships
May 26, 2011
Golf might very well be a game in which the greatest individual garners the glory and accolades, but on Monday at the Class 4A state tournament in Hutchinson, Tonganoxie High learned just how valuable each member of its team could be.
Bonner Springs, Tonganoxie battle to unconventional doubleheader split as both ‘home teams’ claim victories
May 12, 2011
The home team on the scoreboard won one game Friday at Leavenworth County Fairgrounds and the team actually playing on its home field won the other game.
Braves, Chieftains split revised twinbill
May 6, 2011
It didn’t happen — where or when — as originally planned, but Bonner Springs High and Tonganoxie split a doubleheader that had been scheduled for Thursday at BSHS.
BSHS boys handle Chieftains
February 18, 2011
On a night the Tonganoxie High boys basketball team struggled to make shots, it fell behind early Friday and trailed throughout a 52-41 home loss to Bonner Springs.

Full story list

Recent photos

Tonganoxie High senior running back Derek Lingo tries to stay upright with Bonner Springs defensive back Jonathan Blackwell hanging on him Friday at David Jaynes Stadium. The Chieftains lost at BSHS, 48-13.

Bonner Springs High senior running back JJ Jackson runs down the sideline for one of his five rushing touchdowns as Tonganoxie's Tyler Ford and Jonas Myers try to track him down Friday at David Jaynes Stadium. The Braves defeated THS, 48-13.

Senior Madison Scott reaches high for a kill attempt Saturday against Great Bend. Bonner Springs won the fifth-place match at the Tonganoxie Invitational, 25-14, 25-17.

Bonner Springs senior LaVerta Hackney sends the ball over the net Saturday against Great Bend in one of Bonner's three victories at the Tonganoxie Invitational.

BSHS junior Haley Hoffine gets up for a kill attempt Saturday at the Tonganoxie Invitational against Great Bend. Bonner Springs won the match, 25-14, 25-17, and finished fifth.

Full photo list