Coach Mike Davis of the Columbia College women's basketball team has recently reached a milestone, 20 wins with just two losses.
The Cougars have nine games left on their regular-season schedule.
“I’m fortunate to have two years with 30-plus wins,” said Davis. “This is the best start I’ve had with a team.”
Already halfway through the season, Davis is thrilled with where his team is.
“Winning 20 games is a stepping stone for us,” said Davis. “We can’t finish our season with 20 wins. This is where we are at today.”
And "today" was practice for the Lady Cougars.
As practice began, so did the bubbling personalities of the female athletes. A few of the girls entered The Arena at Southwell Complex early to shoot around before practice.
Behind the half-court line, shots, 3-pointers, free-throws and layups went through the hoop. Then, Davis broke the chatter with some news before beginning practice.
“Whitney Widaman is just 18 points shy of 1000 points,” Davis said.
The women cheered for their teammate.
As stretching finished, the sound of basketballs hitting the floor began to echo throughout the complex.
Davis’ voice bounded over the sound of the basketballs in a repetitive and reassuring manner. He yelled, “Hands on the ball, two hands ladies, up and under, up and under, work hard ladies, work hard!”
This Thursday, the Cougars will play Hannibal-LaGrange in Hannibal.
“It’s all about knowing each other now,” said Davis. “At this point we should be able to shoot well from the perimeter, we can’t have any of those off nights in shooting.”
The Cougars have seven remaining conference games before the American Midwest Conference tournament begins. However, Davis isn’t thinking about those games.
“It’s the next one, Hannibal-LaGrange,” said Davis. “The next one is the most important one. We focus on what’s coming up.”
Davis calls his players competitive and consistent, saying they work well together because of their great work ethic.
“It’s right now. What’s happening now is what’s important.”