Basketball team featured unified plan
The Columbus School for Girls basketball team had problems with its chemistry last season en route to finishing 1-20 overall.
In an effort to avoid similar issues from cropping up again this season, the Unicorns had the word 'Unified' printed on the front of their practice jerseys as a constant reminder about the importance of playing together as a team.
The motto seemed to pay dividends as the Unicorns improved to 4-19 overall under first-year coach Lindsey Smith.
"We had a lot of problems getting along within our team last year and a lot of us were playing for ourselves instead of playing for each other," junior guard Lindsay Hester said.
"Our new coach gave us new attitudes and a new outlook on the season, and we were a lot closer and more unified just like our jerseys say. We communicated a lot better and got along a lot better, and that's the main reason we won more games."
The Unicorns lost their first five games, including a 58-2 CCL loss at Hartley on Dec. 12.
CSG beat Horizon Science 52-30 on Dec. 14, but lost its next six games to drop to 1-11.
The Unicorns then won three of their last 10 regular-season contests, beating Crestline 47-35 on Jan. 19, Patriot Academy 54-37 on Jan. 28 and FCI Academy 48-29 on Feb. 12.
And CSG was more competitive in its league rematch against Hartley, losing 79-28 on Jan. 22 at home.
"We're really happy with how much we improved and how much better we played during the second half of the season," senior point guard Haleigh Wilson said. "I was happy that we were more competitive with our league opponents the second time around, and it was nice to win some games to show the potential that we had."
The 20th-seeded Unicorns opened the Division III district tournament Feb. 16 with a 69-20 loss at fourth-seeded Fredericktown. Sophomore point guard Myrial Holbrook scored 10 points and freshman forward Annie Parkhill scored seven.
The Unicorns finished last in the CCL at 0-8. DeSales, Ready and Watterson shared the league title at 6-2 and Ready went 2-6.
The Unicorns lose two senior starters in Wilson and forward Joan Darnell.
Five players who started multiple games are expected back in Hester, Holbrook, Parkhill and sophomore guards Kameron Millner and Rebecca O'Donovan.
"We'll miss our seniors," Hester said. "But we have a lot of skilled upcoming freshmen, so I think we'll do just as well or even better next year."