Tonawanda News

High Schools

March 29, 2013

2013 Tonawanda News' girls hoops Player of the Year: Leah McDonell

Tonawanda News — TOWN OF TONAWANDA — Like most children, Leah McDonell once dreamed of greatness.

On the courts and fields of the Riverside Boys and Girls club, before she moved to the Town of Tonawanda in 2007, the Cardinal O’Hara basketball star cultivated her athletic ability, playing every game the club had to offer. Hockey, lacrosse, soccer or basketball — she just loved to compete.

She always wanted to play against the best players too; especially the boys. Her hunger for competition has only grown since then.

“A lot of people say that I’m so nice outside of basketball, but when I get in the game they’re scared to even talk to me,” she said. “I think I’m just really competitive. Even in school, we played a little Jeopardy game last period and I just have to win. I think it’s just that my motivation to win is so great.”

One day before the games began at camp, McDonell noticed her mentor and camp director, former Cleve-Hill basketball star and Erie Community College Hall of Famer Bob Nowak, paging through a scrap book his daughter had made for him, filled with all the newspaper articles from his playing career.

“I looked up to him and he was showing me these things he’d done,” McDonell said. “I thought how much I want to be able to show someone something like that someday.”

Two Catholic school state championships later, O’Hara’s all-time leading scorer has done it all at the high school level, and is this year’s Tonawanda News girls basketball player of the year. She finished out her career with 1,617 total points, placing her at No. 2 on the Monsignor Martin all-time scoring list.

Her basketball career reads like a laundry list of accomplishments, and just for kicks she became the first O’Hara girls soccer player in history to score 100 goals last November. 

Text Only
High Schools
Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Facebook
Front page
NDN Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success