The Thomas Worthington High School girls basketball team likely won't win the OCC-Central Division championship, but the Cardinals still can have a say in who does.

The Thomas Worthington High School girls basketball team likely won't win the OCC-Central Division championship, but the Cardinals still can have a say in who does.

The Cardinals, who lost to Upper Arlington 49-37 on Jan. 20, they play host to Dublin Coffman on Friday, Jan. 27, and close the regular season Feb. 10 at Central Crossing.

Coffman took sole possession of first place in the OCC-Central with a 40-34 win over Central Crossing on Jan. 20. Entering play Jan. 24, the Shamrocks were 8-1 in the league, followed by Central Crossing (7-2), Upper Arlington (7-2), Hilliard Davidson (5-4), Thomas (4-5), Hilliard Darby (3-6), Westland (1-8) and Worthington Kilbourne (1-8).

The Cardinals lost to Coffman 61-51 on Dec. 16.

"Dublin Coffman is a team we can beat," senior forward Erica Morris said. "Honestly, I feel like we could beat any team in the league. We just need to have everyone step up and play as a team. That's our big theme - playing as a team."

The Cardinals had lost seven of their previous 10 games before playing Davidson on Jan. 24.

"Coffman's a tough team," coach Laurie Barr said. "They have some solid post players. In the first meeting, they got some fast breaks against us when we didn't get back on defense. I felt like we didn't crash the boards hard enough the first time around."

The Cardinals held a 35-34 lead over Coffman through three quarters in the previous meeting, but the Shamrocks outscored Thomas 27-16 in the fourth quarter.

The Cardinals also had one bad quarter in a 66-48 loss to Dublin Scioto on Jan. 17 and in the loss to UA.

They were outscored 20-8 in the second quarter against the Irish and outscored 16-6 in the second quarter against the Golden Bears.

"I feel like our team should be up there (in the OCC-Central standings)," Morris said. "We have the (team) chemistry, but we're not consistent. We have to work hard in practice and be ready for each game."

"If we come out strong and put four quarters together, we're capable of beating anyone," Barr said.

"We can't dig ourselves into a hole and expect ourselves to dig our way out. There are too many good teams in our league to do that."

One of the challenges facing the Cardinals in the rematch against Coffman is keeping the Shamrocks off the boards. Coffman is led by 6-foot-1 center Sade Olatoye and 5-9 forward McKenzie Bailey, who were averaging 8.4 and 8.3 rebounds, respectively, through 12 games.

"We learned that we need to work as a team," Morris said. "We need to crash the boards better. Everyone needs to step up and be consistent as a team."

The Cardinals also must find a way to slow Coffman's transition game.

"(Allowing fast breaks is) just a lack of execution on our part," Barr said.

"When we attack the basket, we should expect that teams are going to look to go the other way. It's inexcusable for us not to get back on defense."