Mohawk High girls basketball standout Karly McCutcheon missed virtually her whole junior season last year because of an injury.
This year, McCutcheon came back with a vengeance to close her high school career.
McCutcheon, a 5-foot-9 senior guard, was named third-team all-state for Class 3A girls players on Tuesday as voted on by media throughout the state of Pennsylvania. She missed 22 games last year because of a posterior cruciate ligament tear sustained on the first play of the team’s first scrimmage last season. McCutcheon played in just one game, a first-round WPIAL playoff loss to Washington.
“The knee was never an issue,” Lady Warriors coach Mike O’Lare said. “The only injury she got this year was an elbow, which she missed two games.”
A West Liberty recruit, McCutcheon averaged 17.2 points per game. She added six rebounds and 2.9 assists a game as well. McCutcheon also buried a team-best 91 3-pointers and notched 185 career 3-pointers, both are school records.
“She made a lot of 3s,” O’Lare said of McCutcheon. “When you make 91, that’s a really good season.
“Her leadership. Her competitiveness. She just has something about her that makes her unique.”
McCutcheon was 66 of 79 from the free-throw line this season and she finished her career with 1,099 points.
“She was always working hard on her game. She has to be told to stop,” O’Lare said. “She has a gym at her house. Even on days when we try to scale things back, she’s getting more shots up.
“She’s tireless. I’ve never coached anyone who worked as hard as she does.”
Mohawk (24-3) was still alive in the PIAA Class 3A playoffs. The Lady Warriors were slated to play Cambria Heights (25-3) in the state quarterfinals. However, the remainder of the basketball playoffs were canceled earlier this month because of the ongoing coronavirus concerns.
Mohawk shared the section title with Beaver, with each team compiling a 12-2 record in Section 1 action. The Lady Warriors defeated the Lady Bobcats in the WPIAL Class 3A championship game, 44-26, on Feb. 29. It marked the first district title for Mohawk in school history.
McCutcheon is one of two players (Isabella Schmidt is the other) that will be lost to graduation from this year’s Lady Warriors team.
“It’s always hard to replace kids like Karly,” O’Lare said. “The best part of it is knowing when she leaves, there will be no regrets. She has zero regrets as far as what we’ve accomplished and what she has accomplished. The only thing that stopped us was the virus.
“To replace her, there’s no way. You can’t replace a player like her.”
Following is the rest of the Class 3A all-state team:
First team: Jaye Haynes, Germantown Academy; Diamond Johnson, Neumann-Goretti; Kylie Lavelle, Riverside (Taylor); Brooke Lawyer, Delone Catholic; Destiney, McPhaul, West Catholic; Moriah Murray, Dunmore.
Second team: Antonia Bates, Notre Dame (Green Pond); Denae Carter, St. Basil; Summer McNulty, Loyalsock; Cassie Murphy, Notre Dame-Green Pond; Jaylah Robinson, Mastery North; Mariah Wilson, Lancaster Mennonite.
Third team: Erika Dubosky, Panther Valley; Karly McCutcheon, Mohawk; Gianna Hoddinott, Delone Catholic; Jada Lee, Carlynton; Ciera Toomey, Dunmore; Maddie Vizza, Germantown Academy.
Player of the year: Diamond Johnson, Neumann-Goretti
Coach of the year: Beulah Osueke, West Catholic