Shaler Stuns Mount Lebanon to Win WPIAL Girls AAAA Title

Saturday, March 5, 2011 | 12:00 AM

Coming into Saturday nights WPIAL Girls Class AAAA title game, top-seed Mount Lebanon was poised to re-write the history books as they hoped to become only the third team in Quad A history to win three or more straight championships. But Shaler's titanic effort slammed the history book shut. The Titans captured their first ever WPIAL girls basketball crown with a stunning 41-35 victory over the Blue Devils Saturday night at Duquesne University.

The win came despite the fact Shaler played the final five minutes without two starters who fouled out and lost another starter to fouls with just over a minute remaining.

The Mount Lebanon defense was dominant in the first two quarters as their offense struggled. Shaler took an early 4-2 lead but would not score again in the opening quarter as the Blue Devils led after one 10-4. The second quarter was more of the same on both ends with a mix of poor shooting and strong defense. Mount Lebanon led at the break 18-9.

But the key to the game was the fire the Titans came out of the locker room with to begin the second half. Shaler scored 9 of the first 11 points in the first two minutes of the quarter and took a 24-22 lead at the midway point of the third quarter. The Titans built a 30-25 lead by the end of that whirlwind third quarter in which they outscore the Blue Devils 21-7.

It looked like the tide may be turning back to the two-time defending champs early in the fourth quarter when a pair of Shaler players fouled out within ten seconds of each other. Both Hillary Sauer and Cate Potter turned spectator at the 5:01 mark with the score tied 32-32.

Shaler's Ashley Domachowski then made two huge plays to give her team the lead for good. A steal and a lay-up made it 34-32. Then another bucket a minute and a half later by Domachowski after a Titans free throw made it 37-32.

Time and time again, Mount Lebanon's defense would create an opportunity, but they could not put the ball in the hoop

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