SHARON — As General McLane waited for Pittsburgh Central Catholic to vacate the lockerroom Wednesday night, someone yelled down to the Lady Lancers’ head coach, Meghan Meabon, and asked her who she wanted to play next: Mount Pleasant or Indiana.

Meabon answered quickly: “It doesn’t matter.”

Meabon and the Lady Lancers didn’t want to think about their next opponent. They had something much more important to talk about: a thrilling 54-43 win over West Mifflin that put the Lancers just two wins away from a spot in the PIAA Class AAA girls basketball championships at Penn State University’s Bryce Jordan Center.

“This is an amazing feeling,” McLane senior point guard Ashley Dougherty said. “We can’t really believe it. It’s like a shock. When you start playing basketball, you want a state championship. And we’re actually making a run to get one.”

West Mifflin nearly put an end to that run last night at Sharon High School.

The Lancers looked like they were going to take control of the game in the third quarter when they went on a 7-2 run to take a 30-21 lead with 6:09 remaining in the stanza. The lead tied McLane’s largest of the game.

The Titans, however, just wouldn’t go away. Mifflin finished the quarter with a 12-6 run to climb back to within three (36-33) and tied the game at the start of the fourth quarter on a 3-pointer by Brittney Bergman.

Game on.

McLane surrendered the lead for the first time since the 4-minute mark of the first quarter when Bergman knocked down her second trey with 2:44 to play that put the Titans up 43-42. The bucket angered the Lady Lancers a bit, according to Meabon. And little did the Titans know, angry Lancers are pretty difficult to stop.

“When we get mad, we know there isn’t anything that’s going to stop us,” McLane senior forward/center Julia Myers said. “When we’re mad and we play together we can overcome anything and it just feels great.”

Overcome is exactly what the Lancers did. Bergman’s 3-pointer turned out to be West Mifflin’s final basket of the game as the Lancers went on a 12-0 to finish the game with a 54-43 win.

McLane scored eight of its final 12 points at the free throw line. Freshman Leah Hansen was 4-for-4.

“We find ways to win,” Meabon said. “We don’t give up. They’re strong fighters and you can’t ask much more out of a team.”

Sarah Hansen, again, played a crucial role for the Lancers. Hansen, who came into the game averaging 20.5 points in the postseason, finished the game with a game-high 17 points. She scored all of McLane’s 11 first-quarter points and their first 13 of the game. Hansen also brought down 13 rebounds.

Val Majewski, Myers and Dougherty chipped in with nine points each for the Lancers. Dougherty had two big baskets the first of which came from the seat of her pants in the second quarter that not only gave the Lancers their biggest lead of nine points (19-10), but a vote of confidence that things were probably going to go pretty well.

“I felt pretty good at that time,” Meabon said. “We some up and downs still. But, yeah, you had that feeling like, ‘This is going to happen.’”

And it did.

With the win, the Lancers have made it further than any team in the program. And for those wondering, the Lancers will take on Indiana in the PIAA Class AAA quarterfinals on Saturday at a site and time to be determined.

Indiana, the fourth seed out of the WPIAL, topped WPIAL fifth seed Mount Pleasant yesterday, 50-42.

West Mifflin, the WPIAL runner-up, finished its season at 20-8. Jessica Pitts led the Titans with 15 points and seven rebounds.

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