Mohawk outshoots Laurel in section victory
Mohawk (77) Vs. Laurel (51)
Dec 14, 2007

Mike Tinstman knew inconsistency was going to follow his inexperienced group this season.

The Laurel High boys basketball coach witnessed firsthand as his Spartans used a dominating second quarter to trail Mohawk by two at the half, only to squander their opportunities and lose 77-51 in WPIAL Section 2-AA action last night.

“Our kids played hard,” Tinstman said. “We were in the ballgame, but we’re still struggling offensively. Mohawk is an excellent team, there’s no doubt about that. They shoot well, run well and play defense.”

Behind an impressive outside-shooting performance by Justin Shaffer, Mohawk (2-0 section, 4-1 overall) took a 24-9 lead in the first quarter. Shaffer, who scored 11 in the first period, led all scorers with 23 points and added five assists.

“We’ve known Laurel has been struggling and we know every section game on the road is not going to be easy,” Shaffer said. “We battled, though. It was a big win for us.”

A senior guard, Shaffer sank five 3-pointers, three of which were in the first period.

“He was feeling it tonight,” Mohawk coach Kevin Wrona said. “He’s had two good games now, so we’re excited for what that might lead for him.”

Laurel (0-3, 0-6) came back in the second quarter and outscored the Warriors, 22-9 to make cut the deficit and make it 33-31 at the half.

Adam Gibson and Eric Wallas paced the Spartans in the quarter. Gibson scored seven and Wallas added six.

Wallas, Dane Naughton and Jake Dando led Laurel in scoring with 11 points each. Gibson followed with nine markers.

“Give Laurel a lot of credit,” Wrona said. “They made us work for that one. The score is no indication of how tight and competitive a game it was.

“Laurel made a run there in the second quarter. We thought we could knock them out early, but give coach Tinstman and his kids a lot of credit. They made us work tonight.”

Matt Lorello led Mohawk’s charge, scoring 14 of his 19 points in the second half.

“Matt’s doing some good things for us right now,” Wrona said. “We were able to find the ball inside to him and he was able to do a good job finishing.”

Michael Henry paired up well with Lorello down low. Henry led the team with nine rebounds and added four steals and five points.

Cory Nesbitt delivered 10 points, while Chase Frederick chipped in with seven assists and five rebounds to go with his six points.

“When you’re young there’s a lot of inconsistency,” Tinstman said. “We found out that at times we can play with these teams. All the teams in this league play four quarters while we’re still learning.

“At times we play well. We just can’t keep that intensity. Our shooting is inconsistent. Mohawk showed how well they can shoot from the perimeter. We’re not consistent and it showed in the game tonight.”

Tinstman, though, was more concerned with how both teams acted late in the game.

With 1:20 remaining in the game, Naughton turned the ball over and immediately turned around and tackled Shaffer in front of the Laurel bench. Shaffer got right up and swung at Naughton.

Officials immediately ejected both players before reversing their call to an intentional foul on Naughton and no call on Shaffer.

“There’s no place for that in basketball,” Tinstman said. “I was disappointed with Dane tackling like that. It was probably frustration, but there’s no room for that.”
Nightly Roundup
Game Scoreboard
Mohawk 24 9 24 20 0 77
Laurel 9 22 10 10 0 51
Box Scores
Field Goals Attempted Foul Shots Made Foul Shots Three Points Total Points Fouls
#3 Justin Shaffer8225230
#5 Michael Henry163050
#21 Cory Nesbitt3331100
#23 Chase Frederick310060
#44 Matt Lorello7750190
#41 Dan Powell200040
#32 Matt Jura300180
#2 Andrew Brown100020
#10 Adam Gibson363090
#3 Jacob Dando5101110
#2 Eric Wallas4203110
#21 Dane Naughton4221110
#5 Christopher Smith100020
#1 Shane Caldararo031010
#12 Tyler Masone164060
#25 Michael Natale010000
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