MADISON TOWNSHIP — For Brian Davis and his Madison Rams, any time spent on a basketball court is time well spent.
The Rams are off to a surprising 4-2 start after Saturday’s 34-32 overtime win over previously unbeaten Columbus Northland at the Hoban Hoopfest in Akron.
That Madison has played its full allotment of games through the first month of the season is welcome relief to Davis. A year ago at this time the Rams were sitting at home as the season was ravaged by COVID-19.
Madison played only 12 of 22 regular season games during the 2020-21 season, going through quarantine protocols four different times. The Rams couldn’t play or practice during a two-month stretch from late-November to late-January and had fewer full-squad practices than games during what turned out to be a lost season.
“We’ve already had more practices this year than we did all of last year,” Davis said after last week’s come-from-behind 38-34 win over Ashland. “You can see the dividends.”
Senior center Faith Kuhn, a Shawnee State volleyball recruit, has led the charge in the early-going. The 6-foot-1 Kuhn scored a career-high 24 points in the win over Ashland and added 19 in Saturday’s win over Northland.
“The Ashland win was a big win for us,” Kuhn said. “I feel like with the momentum we have, it’s going to help us throughout the rest of the season.”
While Kuhn is the centerpiece, she has gotten plenty of help. In Madison’s win over Ashland, Kuhn was one of eight Rams to score and all 10 players on the varsity roster saw meaningful minutes.
“In the past we’ve always been guard-heavy. Our guards would take a lot of shots,” Davis said. “With Faith, now our focus is getting the ball to the post and working inside-out. When Faith decides she wants the basketball, she is a load underneath.
“She has got to want it and we have got to get it to her.”
Madison returns to Ohio Cardinal Conference action Thursday at Mount Vernon. The Rams are at Mansfield Senior on Saturday.
“We know where we’re at and we know we still have a lot of work to do,” Davis said. “Hopefully we’re going to have the opportunity this year to continue to improve.
“We know we’re not good enough to just walk out on the court and win a basketball game. We’ve got to give everything we have — and hope for some good luck.”