The Hilliard Davidson High School girls basketball team lost its quickest and most athletic player to graduation in Brittany Cheese, who averaged 9.2 points last season.

The Hilliard Davidson High School girls basketball team lost its quickest and most athletic player to graduation in Brittany Cheese, who averaged 9.2 points last season.

Despite losing Cheese, who won a Division I state track title in the 100-meter hurdles in 14.2 seconds, third-year coach Lisa Cady said the Wildcats are even quicker and more athletic than they were a year ago.

Davidson finished 13-8 last season after losing to Brookhaven 65-44 in the first round of the Division I district tournament.

The Wildcats open Saturday at Pickerington Central, before playing host Tuesday to Watterson.

"This is the quickest team we've ever had," Cady said. "That helps, offensively, because we can run the floor and score in transition pretty well. And it helps, defensively, with trapping and our pressing game."

Four players who started multiple games last season have returned in senior guards Addie Goodwin (5-foot-7) and Jamie Caton (5-10) and junior guards Sam Bradway (5-8) and Rebekah Kauffman (5-7).

Goodwin averaged 10.5 points and was honorable mention all-district and first-team all-OCC-Central Division, while Caton averaged 8 points and Kauffman averaged 7.1 points.

Vying to start at point guard are sophomore Madie Long (5-5) and freshman Lauren Bates (5-9).

Rounding out the lineup are senior post player Megan Epps (6-0), senior guards Megan Griffin (5-5) and Alyssa DePaola (5-6), junior guards Kelsey Sicker (5-6), Kendra Vanhorn (5-6) and Ashley Weethee (5-4), sophomore post player Katie Dymek (5-10) and freshman post player Maddison Blackwell (6-0).

"We're not sure who will start in most of the spots, but we do know that we need Addie and Jamie on the floor, because they've both played for us since they were freshmen," Cady said. "Addie's done a great job running the point the past few years, and she'll run it again if we need her to, but she's a scorer.

"It's nice that we've got a couple of girls who can get her the ball. Jamie's our main presence inside."

The Wildcats are coming off a good season in which they went 8-0 in games decided by 10 points or less. Davidson beat Darby twice (47-40 and 48-39) to take a 3-2 lead in the all-time series against the Panthers.

The Wildcats also beat Upper Arlington 61-56 on the way to finishing second (11-3) in the OCC-Central, behind Dublin Coffman (14-0) and ahead of UA (10-4), Darby (8-6), Central Crossing (6-8), Thomas Worthington (5-9), Worthington Kilbourne (2-12) and Westland (0-14).

But the Wildcats struggled mightily in the games that they didn't win, losing by an average of 22.1 points.

Davidson lost to league champion Coffman 68-37 and 51-20.

"Dublin Coffman and Upper Arlington both have some good players back and are going to be tough again," Cady said. "But with the personnel that we have, I think winning our league is an attainable goal."

The 11th-seeded Wildcats then were upset by 12th-seeded Brookhaven in the district tournament to end their season on a three-game losing streak.

"This is my third year, and I finally feel like our players are understanding and buying into our system," Cady said. "This is the best overall senior leadership we've had, so I wouldn't be surprised if we go far in the tournament. It's just going to depend on how hard we work and how much effort we put in."

At a glance

•Coach: Lisa Cady, third season

•Opener: Saturday at Pickerington Central

•Key players: Jamie Caton, Addie Goodwin and Rebekah Kauffman

Schedule

Nov. 28 at Pickerington Central

Dec. 1 vs. Watterson

*Dec. 4 at Hilliard Darby

*Dec. 8 vs. Westland

*Dec. 11 at Thomas Worthington

*Dec. 15 vs. Worthington Kilbourne

*Dec. 18 at Central Crossing

Dec. 29-30 at Gahanna Holiday Tournament

*Jan. 5 at Dublin Coffman

*Jan. 8 at Upper Arlington

Jan. 11 at New Albany

*Jan. 14 vs. Hilliard Darby

*Jan. 22 at Westland

*Jan. 26 vs. Thomas Worthington

*Jan. 29 vs. Central Crossing

*Feb. 2 at Worthington Kilbourne

*Feb. 5 vs. Dublin Coffman

Feb. 9 vs. Olentangy Liberty

*Feb. 12 vs. Upper Arlington

*OCC-Central game