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Lafferty's recruiting rapport has included offers from two NCAA D-II programs

SPARTA'S JAKE LAFFERTY prepares to make a move to the bucket against Kansas City Central on Saturday.
SPARTA'S JAKE LAFFERTY prepares to make a move to the bucket against Kansas City Central on Saturday.

Jake Lafferty wore his Sparta home white uniform for the Trojans’ trip to Southwest Baptist in the Missouri Hall of Fame Classic on Saturday.

It isn’t likely he’ll wear a home uniform at SBU again. The Bearcats are not among the colleges actively recruiting the Sparta senior star.

"They stopped, they ghosted me,” Lafferty said after scoring 24 points in Sparta’s 53-42 victory against Kansas City Central. “I was hoping they were going to be here to see me and say, 'Hey, how's it going?' But they randomly stopped (communicating) around September or October. They were going to be in my top three. I'm big in building relationships and I had a good relationship with them.”

Laffery’s list of schools who have offered him a scholarship include Missouri Southern, Colorado State Pueblo and Evangel.

Pitt State (Kansas), Colorado State Colorado Springs and Jessup (California) are also recruiting him.

Lafferty made a visit to Pueblo and came away impressed enough that he could see himself choosing a school outside of the Midwest.

“I could because for the visit I went on to Pueblo, I loved all the guys and felt like I was part of their family already,” Lafferty said “It’s going to be about how good of a relationship I build.”

Missouri Southern, Pueblo, Pitt State, Colorado Springs and Jessup are all in the NCAA D-II ranks. Evangel is an NAIA member.

“(D-II) is the level I get the most attention from,” Lafferty said. “But I could go NAIA, (NCAA) D-II or D-III. it's a lot to take in. I haven't really put much thought into the recruiting, yet, because I'm trying to enjoy my last year (at Sparta).”

Sparta coach Derec Link is interested to see at what level Lafferty will play at.

“I don't think D-II is the only opportunity he's going to have and I don't think it's going to be the highest opportunity he's going to have,” Link said. “There have been a lot of people who have shown interest, but there's only been a few to put (an offer) on the table.”

Lafferty is among the state’s leaders in scoring and rebounding with averages of 27 points and 12 rebounds this season and has reached career milestones that include 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds.

 “Wherever he chooses to go, he can be as successful as he wants to be,” Link said. “The awesome thing about him is he hasn't just talked about how good he wants to be. He's believed in his vision and he's worked to achieve his dream."