MISSOULA — The Montana women's basketball team has added a point guard to bolster next season's roster.
Harlem girls basketball standout L'Tia Lawrence has verbally committed to the Lady Griz. She will sign in April and play on full scholarship.
Lawrence had signed with Montana State-Northern last year but a spot came available for the Lady Griz recently and she is taking it. She was named Class B all-state in all four of her high school seasons.
The 5-foot-8 Lawrence was coached in high school by her father, Marlin. As a junior she averaged 19.1 points, 6.7 rebounds, 3.8 assists and almost two steals per game. As a senior she led her team in scoring (17 ppg.), rebounds and assists.
"Ever since she was little she has always dreamed about playing for the Lady Griz," said coach Lawrence, who has family in Missoula and used to take L'Tia to Griz football games as a child. "She's worked hard her whole life and I'm super excited for her. She's worked her butt off.
"She has good IQ, a very smart player. If she makes a mistake she goes back and tries to learn from it. She's very good in the open court. She can create for herself and her teammates and she can hit the open 3 as well."
Lawrence will help fill the void left when starting senior point guard McKenzie Johnston played her last game earlier this month. Shooting guard Taylor Goligoski also exhausted her eligibility this past season and shooting guard Gabi Harrington transferred to the University of Idaho for her senior season.
The Harlem team went 1-1 at the State B tournament before the event was shut down because of the coronavirus earlier this month. The Wildcats had a close call with undefeated Loyola Sacred Heart in their tourney opener, dropping a 56-51 decision.
On the subject of committing to the Lady Griz L'Tia Lawrence sent the following to the Missoulian va text:
"Growing up every little girl in Montana dreams of playing for their home state at one of the two university’s in Montana and I was one of those little girls. (To have the) opportunity to have your dream become a reality, no words can express that feeling. I am very thankful for all my coaches, teammates, community and family for their support and Coach Schweyen for this opportunity to become a Lady Griz!"
In other news Tuesday, former Sentinel star Kylie Frohlich, a sophomore member of the Lady Griz this past season, has entered the NCAA transfer portal. That news was confirmed by a family member.
Bill Speltz is Missoulian Sports Editor and has served as Sunday columnist the past 14 years. Do you have a story idea? Email Bill at email@example.com.
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