With a group of mostly inexperienced players as key ball-handlers, the Ready High School girls basketball team has leaned on senior post player Derricka Bramwell this winter.
At 5-foot-11 and a three-year regular, Bramwell has increased her scoring average from 12 points per game a year ago to 17.7. The Silver Knights were 7-8 overall after beating Patriot Academy 38-31 on Jan. 12 and improved to 2-1 in the CCL with a 35-33 win Jan. 10 over DeSales.
"We're inexperienced, and the biggest thing is we lack confidence," coach Joe Lang said. "Obviously (Bramwell) is our best offensive player, and she's got some skills. She's our leading scorer and our leading rebounder. She's a presence. For us to win, we have to have her out there."
Bramwell, who according to Lang has received interest from Division III college programs such as Otterbein, is one of just two seniors on the Knights along with guard Ariyhana Marshall.
Junior forward Danielle Brown, who averages six points, junior guard Bre Hejduk and sophomore guards Catey Wolfe and Ava Hurd also have taken on key roles after mostly coming off the bench last season.
Lang is optimistic about a future that should feature freshmen Sierra Schlosser (forward), Reagan Wheatley (guard) and Abby Grundei (guard).
Ready won both of its games in the West Side Classic on Dec. 28 and 29 at Westland, defeating Briggs 54-12 and Franklin Heights 41-30.
Then on Jan. 3, the Knights got 27 points from Bramwell but lost to Shekinah Christian 49-46.
Ready opened CCL play with a 40-15 victory over Columbus School for Girls on Dec. 8 but lost to Hartley 64-34 on Jan. 5 as Bramwell scored 16 and Marshall had eight.
"Offensively (is) where we've got to get better," Lang said. "We're kind of in a tough spot. I think in reality in two years we'll be pretty good."
Boys team looks to get over hump
With a 62-60 overtime loss Jan. 11 to Watterson, the boys basketball team has lost six games in a row and is 4-7 overall and 0-4 in the CCL.
During the skid, however, there have been some positives.
In losses to DeSales (71-60 on Jan. 4) and Canton Central Catholic (59-48 on Jan. 5), the Knights were within six points late in the fourth quarter. They led Watterson by eight in the fourth before the Eagles rallied to forced overtime.
Ready outrebounded Parma Heights Holy Name on Dec. 28 and had its top two scoring threats, sophomore forward Darius Parham and senior guard Jaishan Norris, finish with 24 and 21 points, respectively, but it wasn’t enough in a 71-60 loss.
“We’re not going to run away from anyone,” coach Tony Bisutti said. “Our guys are going to stay with it. We’re trying to stay toe-to-toe, but we just need a little more a little earlier. There are just a lot of little things, and we can’t coach them all at once, but we’re going to get there.”
After averaging 7.5 points last season, Parham is averaging 14. Norris is averaging 10.9, sophomore guard Garrison Budd is averaging eight and junior guard Brock Baker and senior guard Cade Dent both are averaging seven.
Ready will try to avenge a 79-74 loss to St. Charles on Dec. 7 when it plays host to the Cardinals on Friday, Jan. 18.
“There’s just some game slippage going on with guys still trying to gain some experience,” Bisutti said. “(Norris and Parham) are pretty steady. We need to get that third consistent guy. Good teams have that.”
Wrestlers prep for another invitational
On Saturday, Jan. 19, the wrestling team will compete in the Hamilton Township Invitational.
On Jan. 5 in the Bobcat Invitational at Grandview, the Knights placed eighth (143.5) of 13 teams behind champion Franklin Heights (263.5) as all five of their competitors earned top-four finishes.
Aiden Aiello won the title at 126 pounds. Andrew Halko (145) and Paul Martello (138) were runners-up, Jacob Robinson (195) placed third and Cameron Jones (120) finished fourth.
Ready was 11th (92) in the 19-team Comet Classic on Jan. 12 at Central Crossing behind champion Mount Orab Western Brown (257).
Halko (145) finished first, Robinson (195) placed fourth, Aiello (120) finished fifth, Martello (138) was fifth and Jones (126) was seventh.
"So far, so good," coach Anthony Aiello said. "It's honestly been going really well."
Ready seeking new boys soccer coach
After three seasons as boys soccer coach, Cameron VanTilburg recently stepped down.
Under VanTilburg, the Knights went 9-31-5, including 1-12-1 last fall as they beat Millersport 3-1 and tied Marion Pleasant at 1.
Ready has struggled with low numbers in recent seasons and hasn't posted a winning record since going 10-7-1 in 2005.
VanTilburg, a 2006 Ready graduate, decided to step down because of a possible business venture.
"I'll miss coaching the kids when they come in as young kids and turn into outstanding men," he said. "I'll miss the day-to-day grind, when you come in as individuals and leave as a family."
Below are the coming schedules for the Ready boys basketball, girls basketball, bowling and wrestling teams:
*Jan. 18 — Home vs. St. Charles. The Silver Knights lost to the Cardinals 79-74 on Dec. 7.
Jan. 22 — Home vs. Centerburg
*Jan. 19 — At Watterson
*Jan. 22 — Walnut Ridge at Game of Western Columbus
Jan. 19 — Hamilton Township Invitational