Wildcat tamed by powerhouse Warriors

Liberty Ann Moghrabi dominates most basketball courts she steps on.

Now if she could just get away from Sally Asante and Grace Kusi, everything might be perfect.
Moghrabi, a shooting guard with the Woburn Wildcats has been averaging high double figures for the seniors. But the club has to learn how to beat West Hill Warriors and their double threat of Asante and Kusi.

The Wildcats are 3-2 on the season and one of those losses was at the hands of the Warriors.

Almost a month into the Toronto high school girl’s basketball season, Moghrabi, Asante, and Kusi are three emerging local basketball stars.

Woburn's Liberty Ann Moghrabi is the leading team scorer and scored  33 of the teams 59 points at their last game.Scoring 21 of her team’s 48 points in a 48-18 stomp over Sir Oliver Mowat and 33 of 59 points in a 59-45 win against Sir Wilfred Laurier on Monday, Moghrabi, in grade 12, isn’t bad for a player that only realized her talent in the 10th grade.

“I thought, Hey, it’s going in,” Moghrabi said. “I’m making baskets, I’m not bad!”

Moghrabi’s game can only do so much for the Woburn Wildcats, as she’s pretty much carried her team through their three wins and two losses so far.

“I don’t hog the ball,” Moghrabi says. “I encourage my teammates to take shots and not always pass to me.”

Hopefully her team is taking notes, because with her time at Woburn is coming to an end. (Note to Centennial College women’s basketball coach Carol Stephenson – the young lady wants to be a paramedic.)

“She’s the one that brings home the wins for us,” Wiggins said. “She’s our leading driver, she gets most of the foul shots … what’s going to happen next year if they can’t maintain what the leader sets?”

In their season opener on Sept. 22, Woburn went home disappointed when Asante and Kusi’s West Hill Warriors took the game 63-48.

At 3-1, times are much better for the Warriors now, after failing to make the playoffs last year and ending 2-6.

West Hill's senior girls basketball team captain Sally Asante, right, and teammate Grace Kusi are a well-rounded duo.Coach Matt Sturgeon credits the team’s improvement to the maturing of the team stars, grade 12 students Asante, a shooting guard and swingwoman Kusi.

“They’re two extremely well-rounded players and they compliment one another,” Sturgeon says.

One of the best rebounders Sturgeon’s ever seen, at just 5-foot-7, shorter than your typical forward, Kusi is usually started at centre because of her phenomenal jumping ability.

Sturgeon also plays on Kusi’s versatility, putting her in any forward position in any given game.

“I can jump higher than most people,” Kusi, a woman of brief speech, says.

Asante on the other hand, elected captain by her teammates, is much more vocal. Sturgeon attributes her strong leadership abilities largely to her experience at the Ontario Educational Leadership Centre.

“My attitude, abilities and whole aura could affect the whole team so I always have to stay positive,” Asante said.

Leading the team from shooting guard, Sturgeon says Asante disarms her defenders and nails her jump shots in the key.

Sturgeon has big plans for his Warriors this season, insisting that a 6-1 record wouldn’t be that big of a stretch.

“Playoffs will be tough and we’ll need to bring our best basketball,” he said.