By David Pan Weekly Herald sports editor
Mountlake Terrace had its chances to pull out a victory against one of the top teams in the Western Conference 3A.
The Hawks led Shorecrest 55-40 late in the third quarter and were up by four with 45 seconds to go in the game.
But behind a mammoth 45-point performance by Brianne Lasconia, the Scots escaped with an 83-74 overtime victory Jan. 13 at Mountlake Terrace High School.
“We had probably our best offensive effort,” said Hawks coach Dave Brophy. “We didn’t play our best defense. We had a chance to be ahead at the end of the game.”
Lasconia was dominant throughout the game but especially in the fourth quarter.
“She just willed them back into the game,” Brophy said. “Twenty-two points in the fourth quarter and overtime. She just didn’t score. She had six or seven steals and six or seven assists to go with all the 45 points.”
Shorecrest (8-1 in the league, 11-2 overall) outscored Mountlake Terrace (2-8, 2-11) 27-15 in the fourth quarter and 13-4 in overtime.
The Hawks were led by Taylor Smith, who scored a season-high 32 points. Smith was averaging a team-high 13 points coming into Friday’s contest.
“Taylor was just lighting it up from the outside and midrange,” Brophy said. “Obviously it was her best shooting night.”
Friday’s game wasn’t just a one-person effort, though. Shaian Pagaling scored 14 points and Maddy Kristjanson had 12.
The Scots were without their second-leading scorer India Matheson, who was ill.
Brophy still thinks the Hawks would have given the Scots a battle even if Matheson suited up.
He noted that Mountlake Terrace fell behind 19-2 in the first quarter against Meadowdale but cut the deficit to eight in the fourth quarter. The Hawks fell behind Everett 19-5 in the first quarter but rallied to draw within six with 3:45 left in the game.
“I think our scores are showing we’re getting better,” Brophy said. “As inexperienced as we are, we’re catching up and catching up quickly.”
Mountlake Terrace entered the season with virtually no varsity experience.
“We’ve been playing right even with the good teams for three quarters of the game,” Brophy said. “The key Friday is we were focused on a good start.”
Mountlake Terrace led Shorecrest 21-14 after the first quarter.
Brophy said his players were disappointed by the loss to Shorecrest but that they used that disappointment to fuel practice on Saturday.
“I think Saturday was one of the best practices of the season,” Brophy said. “It was a little bit of a boost in their confidence. … They played hard and played well on Friday night.”
Six of the nine teams in the league advance to districts and the Hawks finished the week in seventh place.
“We figure we need to win four out of the last six games to get to districts,” Brophy said. “We’re starting to believe in ourselves that we can do that.”