Boys Basketball Looks to Rebound Tonight Against Lathrop

Weston Ranch High School will be back on the floor tonight. The Cougars (1-1) look to put last Tuesday’s defeat at Elk Grove behind them as they take on I-5 rival Lathrop (0-)) tonight in the annual Foundation Game. The Cougars will need to improve in several key areas and bounce back against the Spartans, who will play their first season contest.

“We have to get tougher, and we need to do a much better job finishing through contact,” head coach Nicholas Podesta told The Prowl.

So far, scoring doesn’t seem to be one of the areas needing immediate addressing. The Cougars have four players averaging double figures thus far in the early season. Junior Elijah Mobley leads the Cougars in scoring with 17. Sophomore Richard Banks is next with 14, and juniors Elliot Mobley and Kristian Holmes add 12 points apiece. In addition, junior Xavion Bell averages 7 points for the Cougars and five assists per game. Homes and Elijah Mobley both average seven rebounds per game.

While the Cougars have the offensive firepower to score, they will need to make some adjustments on defense tonight and before heading into a challenging December tournament schedule. The Cougs gave up 72 points to Gregori and 81 to Elk Grove, thus making rebounding and guarding the 3-point line priorities against the Spartans. The Cougars surrendered 11 3-pointers to Elk Grove and collected 15 defensive and 13 offensive rebounds. Elk Grove controlled the Cougars on the boards, and head coach Nicholas Podesta knows this is a critical area moving forward.

“They (Elk Grove) absolutely dominated us on the glass last Tuesday,” Podesta said. “Elk Grove outrebounded us by 20, and it’s going to be challenging to win being outrebounded like that.”

Tonight’s game against Lathrop should be another good test for the young Cougars. The Spartans have a formidable program and were 6-4 during last year’s Covid shortened season and 19-8 (11-3 in the WAC) in 2019-2020.

Tonight’s Foundation Game tips off at 7 pm.