Delaynie Morvosh sheds unsung label, makes major impact for Southmoreland
Wednesday, February 16, 2022 | 6:19 PM
When teams yell “shooter!” while they’re defending Southmoreland, Delaynie Morvosh is usually surprised when she realizes they mean her.
“It makes me feel good,” Morvosh said with a grin. “I have always been more of a defensive player.”
The warning cry from opponents represents a sign of respect for Morvosh, a senior guard and second-year starter for Southmoreland, the No. 2 seed in the WPIAL Class 4A playoffs.
The Scotties (17-3) have a first-round bye and won’t play until next Friday.
When they resume their title chase, Morvosh will be ready to get back to work, whether that means guarding a top player, keeping the offense moving or popping out for a 3-pointer.
Quietly, almost behind the scenes, she has become one of the team’s most valuable players.
“I actually put my offense away and worked really hard on my defense,” she said. “I know the team needs me to score. Liv (Olivia Cernuto) and Gracie (Spadaro) just scoring wasn’t going to be enough, especially in the playoffs. I have worked on my shot to help us score. We were getting like 44 points. We need more.”
Morvosh, one of the tallest players on the team at 6-foot-1, has started all but one game this season — she missed because of a covid quarantine — and is the third-leading scorer with a 10-point average.
Her role is likely going to be critical to the team’s success in the postseason.
Southmoreland reached the WPIAL finals two years ago and the semifinals last year. Morvosh was a key reserve as a sophomore for the WPIAL runners-up. Now, she’s one of the Scotties’ big three.
“She has put in so much work on the defensive side,” Scotties coach Amber Cernuto said. “She has been a key for us defensively with her length, quickness and shot-making ability.”
Morvosh’s on-court development has paralleled her physical maturity.
Cernuto said Morvosh had a growth spurt between eighth grade and her freshman year.
“She’s taller than Gracie now,” the coach said. “She used to be one of the smallest girls in our program.”
A few grade-school team pictures show teammates like Spadaro and former Scotties player Bailey Kuhns standing several inches taller than Morvosh, who has also become a pretty good volleyball player.
“She really shot up,” Cernuto said. “She is one of those unsung players who doesn’t get a lot of attention but makes a big impact for us.”
Defense may be her specialty — her nickname is “D” or “Diesel” — but Morvosh often gives the Scotties much more. She also averages four rebounds, two assists and two steals.
She had 22 points in a game this year. But the Scotties can’t hide Morvosh, who is showing up on more game films.
“When they double-team Liv or Gracie, they can lean on me or someone else to get open,” Morvosh said. “Teams know what we have, so we may have to add some new plays.”
But double-teams also have come her way — another sign of her continued growth in the program.
“West Greene doubled me the whole game,” Morvosh said. “I have been face-guarded a lot, me and Liv. We need to be able to handle the ball better when that happens.”
Winning a WPIAL title would feel like walking out of a salon with fresh haircut. Morvosh would know that feeling. She attends cosmetology school and has a full-time job lined up at her mother’s beauty salon in Mt. Pleasant, MD2 Salon.
“I wash hair sometimes now, but I have a job waiting for me there,” she said. “I’ve thought about playing (sports) in college, but I don’t want the debt. We’ll see what happens. Maybe I can teach cosmetology some day.”
Morvosh, whose father Scott played football at Southmoreland and Cal (Pa.) as a kicker, believes the Scotties are a legitimate championship contender.
“It’s a big goal, huge,” she said. “We definitely have a fighting chance. We played really well against Indiana and Upper St. Clair. We think we can play with Blackhawk too.”
Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at email@example.com or via Twitter .
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