Westland High School girls basketball coach Hugo Quint believes his team -- when healthy -- can compete with anyone in the OCC-Central Division.
The Cougars will look to support their coach's confidence when they visit Hilliard Davidson on Tuesday, Dec. 17, in a league contest.
Westland was 2-0 overall and 1-0 in the OCC-Central before playing Thomas Worthington on Dec. 13.
"This team is more than capable," Quint said. "We can be our own worst enemy. We have to play our style of game and try to dictate what we do and not worry about what the other team does."
Prior to facing Thomas, Westland hadn't played since defeating Hamilton Township 54-47 in overtime Dec. 3. Its home game against Marysville was postponed Dec. 6 because of bad weather and was rescheduled for Saturday, Dec. 21.
"It is what it is. You can't do anything about it," Quint said of the layoff between games. "We just have to work on other things in practice. It's not like you don't have anything to work on."
Westland split its two league games against Davidson last season, winning 40-39 on the road after losing 51-21 at home.
Christina Simpson, who missed time last season with a knee injury and broken finger on her shooting hand, believes Davidson will be motivated for the game.
"Davidson has always been kind of a rivalry because they've always beaten us, so when we finally beat them last year, it felt good," Simpson said. "We're definitely looking forward to that game."
Westland also has a league game Friday, Dec. 20, at home against Olentangy Liberty.
The Cougars were swept by the Patriots last season, losing 52-50 and 50-38, but swept Marysville a year ago, winning 35-31 and 43-28.
"There are things that we are doing well," Quint said. "We're taking care of the basketball better. If you take care of the basketball and you get assists, you're going to score points."
Through two games, Simpson was averaging a team-high 16.5 points, with Hunter Kershaw (11.5) and Tanesha Dixon (10) also averaging in double figures. Kershaw missed most of last season with a broken leg.
Boys basketball team getting set for 'Cats
The boys basketball team was 0-2 overall before playing Thomas in its OCC-Central opener Dec. 13 and Columbus South on Dec. 14.
Westland was scheduled to open league play Dec. 6 against Marysville, but the contest was postponed because of bad weather and rescheduled for Jan. 11.
The Cougars will play host to Davidson in an OCC-Central contest Tuesday, Dec. 17, before traveling to Liberty for a league game Friday, Dec. 20. They swept the Wildcats in league play last season, winning 51-37 and 70-42, and split with the Patriots, winning 70-62 and losing 58-44.
Liberty returned only one starter from last season, when it finished 23-2 and was a Division I district runner-up.
"The schedule at the Christmas break is challenging," coach Seth Martin said. "We'll see where we are and see what we need to do to get better."
Prior to facing Thomas, Westland hadn't played since losing to Centennial 54-49 in the consolation game of the Grove City Tip-Off Classic on Nov. 30.
"I'm really looking forward to getting back on the court," Martin said before the Cougars played Thomas. "I thought after Centennial we did some positive things on defense. We're trying to get our offense looking a lot better."
Wrestling team places third in home tourney
The wrestling team went 4-1 and finished third in the eight-team Joe Stora Duals on Dec. 7.
Grove City won the event, going 5-0 and defeating Granville 47-26 in the final. Westland lost to Granville 43-36 but defeated Franklin Heights 66-12, Whetstone 42-18 and West Jefferson 48-31 and 45-19, with the latter win over the Roughriders coming in the third-place dual.
"We were a little disappointed that we were rusty. That was the first varsity (event) for us," coach Bret Busby said.
Blake Rece led the Cougars, finishing 4-0 at 106 pounds.
Westland, which competed in the Wolfpack Classic on Dec. 14 at Worthington Kilbourne, will play host to Thomas in an OCC-Central dual Thursday, Dec. 19.
"I look forward to the OCC," Busby said. "It's one of the best divisions in the state of Ohio when you have Marysville, Hilliard Davidson and Olentangy Liberty.
"I'm very proud of our kids. We have a rough road ahead of us, but we're the Cougars and we're going to hold our heads up high and embrace this competition and, hopefully, the kids are learning about life and the discipline of wrestling."