Though it had one win before last Friday, the Westland High School boys basketball team showed glimpses of promise in breaking a long losing skid.

Though it had one win before last Friday, the Westland High School boys basketball team showed glimpses of promise in breaking a long losing skid.

The Cougars were in position to win five of their previous six games before losing to Dublin Coffman 82-41 last Tuesday at home.

Westland, which entered last Friday's game against Worthington Kilbourne at 1-12 overall and 0-9 in the OCC-Central Division, was looking to snap an 11-game losing streak.

The Cougars return to action on Tuesday when they play host to Thomas Worthington. The Cardinals, which were 3-11 overall and 2-6 in the division before last Friday's game against Coffman, defeated Westland 45-33 on Dec. 22.

Westland faces another tough task on Friday when it plays host to Upper Arlington. The Golden Bears were 12-0 overall and atop the OCC-Central standings at 9-0 before their game against Hilliard Darby last Friday.

UA beat the Cougars 64-44 on Jan. 5.

"UA is a very good team," coach Todd Parker said. "It's kind of a tall order. We never say we can't win, but we do know that some things have to go right for us to beat a good team like that."

Westland's recent improved play was evident in a 45-35 loss to Hilliard Davidson on Jan. 22. The game was tied at 28 entering the fourth quarter before the Wildcats pulled away.

Freshman J.J. Smith led the Cougars with 14 points.

"You're happy with the way they played because they gave themselves a chance to win, but yet it's always something," Parker said. "Whether it'd be free throws, whether it'd be defensive rebounding or turnovers, it always seems to be something that nips us in the butt and doesn't give us a chance to win, and in that game it was turnovers (20)."

Against Coffman, Yusuf Abdi led Westland with 16 points.

"We're kind of inconsistent," Parker said. "Our most consistent scorers are Yusuf and J.J., but they're not usually on the same night."

•The girls basketball team was also looking to end a losing streak when it played Kilbourne last Friday.

The Cougars, which were 2-11 overall and 0-10 in the division, were riding a six-game losing skid.

Westland visits Thomas on Tuesday and first-place UA on Friday.

The Cardinals, which were 8-8 overall and 5-5 in the division before last Friday, defeated the Cougars 72-29 on Dec. 22.

"Size-wise, Thomas Worthington is a much taller team than we are," coach Stephen Clines said. "They have some talented girls and their size sometimes causes us trouble."

The Golden Bears were tied for first in the division with Davidson at 8-1 and were 13-1 overall before last Friday's game against Darby. UA defeated Westland 68-40 on Jan. 5.

Westland's recent challenging schedule included a 69-21 loss to Davidson on Jan. 22 and a 71-30 loss to Coffman last Tuesday.

Against Davidson, Hiba Abdi led the Cougars with six points.

Taylor Horn was the team's high scorer against Coffman with nine points.

"I do see improvement by the kids through the year," Clines said. "I know it's not in the wins, losses like everybody would like, but there is still improvement. We're moving in the right direction. It's probably not as fast as some people would like, but it's heading there."

•The short-handed wrestling team again received solid performances in finishing 11th at the Mary E. Kerr Memorial Tournament at Toledo Waite High School on Jan. 22-23.

The Cougars scored 86.5 points, behind first-place Oregon Clay (251).

Sean Clutter and Zach King led Westland, finishing second at 130 and 189 pounds, respectively.

Scottie Haslam was fifth at 119 and Jordan Finney took eighth at 285.

Coach Roger Branham entered nine wrestlers in the tournament.

"I'm pleased with the tournament considering we were giving up five weight classes," Branham said. "I thought we did fairly well."

Clutter was 25-2 before his team's OCC-Central match against UA last Thursday.

Westland visits South-Western City Schools foe Central Crossing on Thursday. Like the Cougars, the Comets were hit hard by the district's failed levy in August.

"I think that will be a very interesting dual meet considering both of our teams were devastated by kids leaving because of the levy," Branham said. "We're both suffering from the same problems, so it should be a very interesting, competitive dual meet."

Westland had five forfeits in a 63-12 loss to Davidson on Jan. 21.

•The gymnastics team, which opposed Hilliard Bradley last Friday, plays host to Delaware Hayes and Grove City on Monday.

The Cougars had not competed since hosting a five-team meet on Jan. 11. Westland finished fourth behind Thomas (91.815), Heath (88.35) and Miami Trace (84.50), and ahead of Central Crossing (64.80). Freshman Fontyne Pagan led the Cougars with a 20.35 all-around score.

"Individually, the girls are continuing to improve on their skills and are adding difficulty to their routines," coach Lavon Maynard said.