Mohawk girls rally for first win
Mohawk (41) Vs. Laurel (38)

If anything, the Mohawk High girls basketball team knows it isn’t as bad as it might look like on paper.

The Lady Warriors came into last night’s WPIAL Section 2-AA game at Laurel with an 0-5 record, losing by an average of 36 points per game — including a 53-point whipping by Class AAAA Mount Lebanon.

So when the score was tied at 28 going into the fourth quarter last night, it already was an improvement.

The 41-38 win was a huge leap.

“These girls are fighters,” Mohawk coach Mike O’Lare said. “We made a run and withstood theirs.”

The Lady Spartans (1-2 section, 3-3 overall) seemed to be in great shape midway through the third quarter, leading by seven when Lindsey Sauers popped a jumper to make it 26-19.

Then the Lady Warriors’ offense got into a groove for the first time all year.

A 9-2 run that started with an Alyssa Natale steal and layup ended with a Tory Laughner baseline jumper to tie it after three quarters.

“They are a scrappy team and play with a lot of heart,” Laurel coach Jennifer McGarrah said.

The fourth quarter went back and forth, with the Lady Spartans taking a 36-34 lead after Sauers scored off a Lacee Cutchall steal with 3:18 to go. Sauers had 11 points and a game-high 12 rebounds.

Again, though, Mohawk (1-1, 1-5) never blinked when adversity hit.

Down 37-36 with 1:27 left, Lady Warriors point guard Kelly Fox came up with a steal at halfcourt, drove all the way and was fouled. Fox made 1 of 2 to put Mohawk up 38-37.

Fox then forced a Cutchall turnover on the other end, leading to Laughner drilling a 15-footer from the right wing with 44 seconds to play.

“Tory Laughner is all heart,” O’Lare said. “She gets in there and battles you all game.”

Fox made two more from the stripe to put Mohawk up by three before Laurel missed a pair of inside opportunities. Fox went back to the line but missed both with 4.5 left.

With no timeouts, Laurel had one last chance when Cutchall raced upcourt and heaved a prayer that fell short.

“I was just so sick of losing. We needed this,” Laughner said.

Natale led Mohawk with 16 points. Chelsea Brown and Laughner each had nine.

O’Lare was proud of the way his team battled last night, singling out Fox for her improvement at point guard and the team’s overall effort to fight back.
Game Scoreboard
Mohawk 5 9 14 13 0 41
Laurel 9 12 7 10 0 38
Box Scores
Field Goals Attempted Foul Shots Made Foul Shots Three Points Total Points Fouls
#33 Alyssa Natale41271160
#22 Chelsea Brown451090
#10 Tory Laughner265090
#13 Kelly Fox164060
#12 Teresa Westover021010
#32 Lacee Cutchall221160
#14 Kerri Hutchison321070
#20 Lindsey Sauers4430110
#52 Courtney Smith100020
#12 Rachel Kwiatkowski321180
#42 Kaity Anderson142040
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