Laurel's Mamula surprises Lakers Class 4A, Region II

March 05, 1993|By Chuck Acquisto | Chuck Acquisto,Contributing Writer

Lake Clifton coach James Monroe was well aware of Laurel shooting guard Nicole Mamula's high-scoring ability. He just had never seen the All-Met senior play, either live or on video.

So the Spartans' all-time leading scorer, with 2,218 career points, provided the visiting Monroe with a scoring sample of her four-year varsity career with 29 points to key second-seeded Laurel's 62-42 victory over the third-seeded Lakers in a Class 4A, Region II semifinal.

"I knew a little bit about her, I just hadn't kept up with her stats," Monroe said after the game. "I just didn't know she was that good because I had never scouted the team."

Laurel advances to meet No. 1 Western (23-0) tomorrow at 1 p.m.

"I'm fortunate to have a three-man coaching staff that affords us scouting time," Laurel coach Rich Grabisch said. "There were no surprises here tonight by Lake Clifton, just like there won't be any surprises Saturday against Western.

"That doesn't mean that Western isn't the better team, because they are. We know that. Flat-out, they're the better team," Grabisch added. "But the better team doesn't always win and we hope that holds true Saturday."

Despite balanced, double-figure scoring from three Lake Clifton

starters, the Lakers could not prevent Laurel's third-quarter domination, as the Prince George's County 4A champions raised an eight-point halftime lead to 22 with a 24-8 scoring advantage in the eight minutes.

"We've always come out strong after halftime," said Mamula, the all-time leading girls scorer in Prince George's County history. "Maybe it's the pep talks our coach gives that pumps us up."

Mamula struggled in the first half with eight points on 3-for-11 shooting. She took over the Spartans' offense in the third quarter. Leading 29-19 with five minutes left in the period, Mamula hit a three-pointer to open a 15-3 Laurel run.

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