WARRIORS BASKETBALL NEWS
David Monell represents at the 2016 Private School Allstar Game.
Senior David Monell represents Westwood Christian at the 2016 Dade County Private School Allstar Game. This will be the 6th straight year we have a representative from our Warrior family. Great job!
Westwood 54 - School House Prep 50
Reaching the District Finals game was a high-priority to Our Warriors this season, as they prepared for this very day since last summer. Participating in tournaments throughout South Florida and playing versus bigger schools the entire year has been the plan all along for the coaches, preparing and cultivating the team to be ready for this big game.
Our Warriors dealt with the news that our dominant low-post player Emmanuel would not be able to play due to an injury, yet they refused to let the sad news bring them down. Sophomores James Ametepe & Sebastian Guitian displayed what has been their trademark all season, gritty play and hard-nosed effort on the boards, manning the down-low area for our Warriors and each coming up with 10-rebounds.
Their effort this game was on full display and their growth throughout the season has been amazing. Senior Alexis Gonzalez came off the bench to make a momentum-changing steal while diving for the lose ball and saving it for another opportunity for our Warriors to score. His effort inspired the team and fueled the fire for the second quarter comeback. Special plays like the one Alexis made have been the reason for such a tremendous season for our Warriors, as each game featured new players "stepping-up" to the challenge.
David Monell "lit the night on fire" from beyond 3-point range, bombing-away from all over the court. His back-to-back 3-pointers going into halftime propelled our Warriors into a slim lead. David simply would not be denied, burying 3 after 3 while shutting-down the opposite guard. David had been waiting for this opportunity for a very long time and you could see in his eyes he would not let this chance slip away. Late in the game David nailed a seemingly back-breaking 3-pointer right in front of his bench, leading to an emotional outburst from the team and the fans. His game-high 17 points (5 3's) and game-high 6 assists were Huge for our Warriors and propelled him atop the District.
With the game still hanging in the balance, the coaches called out a play that our Warriors ran to perfection on back to back tries, finding our "main-man" Shelby in the block. Shelby did the rest, bullying his way past a defender and twice converting the bucket. Shelby has been our "horse" all year, carrying the team from the very beginning. His "big-game" ability comes forth every time needed for our Warriors including those two clutch buckets down the stretch. The "shot of the game" was actually two shots by Junior Jules Molina with less than a minute to go. Jules came in and hit the biggest shot of his young career and followed it up with another "monster" long-range dagger a few seconds later. Jules was left open along the wing, the ball found him, and he drilled it with ease. Those two shots by Jules along with the stellar play of all our Warriors put us back on top of the District.
Shelby Osceola January Player of the Month
Shelby Osceola was named Player of the Month representing the boys varsity basketball team. Shelby a junior, is a starter and captain of the team and averages 15.6ppg & 6.5rpg leading the Warriors to a current "7th ranked team in the State".
Warriors in Disney
Our Warriors celebrated another stellar season with a team-trip to Disney World.
Westwood 78-SLAM 55
Coming into this game our Warriors had revenge on their minds, as they traveled down-town to face a SLAM Academy team that had previously beaten them handily. Finding out before tip-off that Emmanuel would not play had little effect on the psych of your boys, as they braced for a tough game. Our Warriors raced out to an early lead in the opening quarter behind some good-old-fashioned teamwork.
Moving the ball while spreading the floor on offense led to numerous one-on-one opportunities Shelby capitalized on each and every chance, (game-high 23 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists) backing-down his man and abusing him in the paint. His "Dirk-like" jumper from 15' along with his usual baseline 3's were too much for SLAM to handle and helped open-up a large lead. Shelby has had an amazing year and it continued in this game, as he did a little bit of everything to get the W. His timely rebounds and smart passing were on display as well, as he found cutters for wide-open looks.
James capitalized on some of those passes, moving without the ball to the right spots and making plays once he received it. James nailed two mid-range jumpers and followed it with some slashing moves to the basket to overwhelm the opposition and establish himself as the top forward on the court. James' 13 rebounds, including 5 offensive, were a game-high and his 12 points came at the perfect time for the Warriors as well.
Sebastian played like a "True Warrior" in this one as well, scrapping for every rebound and giving his all for the team. Sebass stayed aggressive throughout the game, drilling shots along the perimeter and stretching-out into 3-point land as well. His 17-points were a huge boost for the ball club and his constant development has the coaching staff excited about what his future holds.
Senior David Monell led the charge on both ends of the floor, collecting a game-high 6 steals to go along with 15-points & 5 dimes. David handled the pressure of their full-court press and half court traps, easily slicing past defenders and making smart decisions.
Another big reason for the lopsided victory was the incredible effort of the guys coming off the bench. Jules Molina played his butt off on defense, forcing his counterpart into bad shots and helping on every chance in the zone. Jules put his body on the line and took a gut-wrenching charge mid-way in the second-half that completely deflated SLAM while giving even more "charge" to his Warriors. From that point on, the rout was on.
Alexis also came off the bench and provided a tremendous spark, especially on defense, where he clogged the middle, blocked several shots, rebounded the ball with ferocity, and even nailed the "back-breaking" 3-point dagger in the final moments. Alexis proved that "hard-work pays off" as he helped steamroll SLAM and get "payback" for the Warriors.
Westwood versus Pinecrest Prep
Our Warriors came into this Homecoming game with a chip on their shoulders and with a bad taste in their mouth from a previous defeat, and wasted no time in establishing themselves as the dominant ones versus Pinecrest Prep.
Missing some key players had little effect as our Warriors took a commanding double-digit lead in the opening quarter. Eman was his usual self, swatting shots and finishing with ease around the rim. He continues his "board-work" as well with another 16-rebound performance.
Sophomore Sebastian Guitian stepped-up bigtime once again, crashing the boards and picking-up every lose rebound he could. Sebass recorded another double-double (15pts 11 rbs) and chipped-in with a season-high 6 blocked shots. His progression this season has been fun to watch, as he's grown into a true leader and one that our Warriors rely on heavily.
The back court duo of David and Matthew handled the offensive load (35-points combined) and easily overpowered their opponents for numerous steals and easy shots. David found his rhythm from deep, connecting on 7 3-pointers and dishing-out 5 assists.
Our Warriors cruised to the win and enjoyed the Homecoming festivities with family and friends. Senior Chris Hernandez was crowned "Homecoming King" during the halftime ceremony.
Westwood 62 Champagnat 59
Our Young-Warriors did some real growing-up tonight against a formidable foe and Regional rival Champagnat Catholic. Having to wait for years to get a victory over a team that simply "had our number", was a sweet victory for the program and a team working hard to establish their true identity. Our Warriors fought tooth-and-nail for every possession and simply would not be denied. Just when things looked bleak for our Warriors, players stepped-up in remarkable fashion to get the win.
Matthew Mejias dropped a few 3-point bombs in the early going and drove to the basket like a true Warrior throughout the the game. His main assignment was to stop the opposition's tops scorer and Matt really rose to the challenge. Limiting him to hardly any "open-looks" and forcing him into tough shots, helped our boys put the clamps on a red-hot team and ushered them to the losing line.
James used his athletic prowess and major-effort to stifle his counterpart and help slow down a top level player. James' desire to compete and show he belongs, were huge for his Warriors, and his timely rebounds helped fuel us to the win. Senior David Monell played his best game of the year at just the right time, clamping on the opponents point guard and basically shutting him down in the second half.
David's timely 3-point bomb along the baseline with less than a minute to play, sealed the victory for our Warriors and propelled him to be considered the top-level guard in the Region. His 17-points, 5-steals, 5-assists were a "thing of beauty" to watch and really lifted the team. Not to be outdone was the play of swing-man Shelby Osceola. Shelby answered the call in major fashion with a number of 3-point daggers throughout the game and with his phenomenal ability to control the game with solid decision-making and major "guts".
Shelby put his team on his shoulders and carried the load in this important Regional matchup and made sure he did whatever it took for the win. His 4 3's came at just the perfect time, breaking the spirit of the opposition, including a long-range bomb from nearly half court that brought the crowd to its feet and help start the offensive show for the Warriors . Shelby has proved this season to be the top forward in the District and one of the top players in Dade County as well.
"Big E" was as always, a big-factor in this one. He handled the paint and did an admirable job in the blocks. His dominance on the defensive end was at full-tilt, as he swatted-away anything that came his way, shutting down the middle and forcing the other team to score in other ways. His game-high 17-rebounds cannot go unnoticed, as he manned-the-middle like a true Warrior, fighting for every possession and giving maximum effort along the way. This game could not have been won without "Eman" and his incredible play in the post and is the real reason why our Warriors are currently ranked top-7 in the State and a real contenders for a State Title.
Warriors vs. Schoolhouse Prep
Starting off the new year on the right note was a big emphasis for our Young Warriors, as they faced District rival Schoolhouse prep at home. Our Warriors came out super aggressive offensively and wasted no time in establishing dominance.
David Monell and Matthew Mejias led the perimeter defensive attack, forcing turnovers at a high rate while converting them into easy scores at the other end. David's game-high 19 points, including 3 3's led the way in the rout of a District foe.
Shelby brought his A-game as well, easily driving past defenders and attacking the rim on every chance. Shelby's 16-points in the first half and constant offensive prowess led to the decisive win. Shelby continues to mature and lead the team through tough stretches while keeping his offensive-game on point with 3-point daggers at every turn.
Sophomore Sebastian Guitian came off the bench with another impressive game, knocking -down jumpers and putting his offensive game on display. Sebastian fought it out in the post as well, showing his improved play and toughness while chipping in with 11pts and 8 boards.
Emmanuel was once again "a force to be reckoned with" down in the trenches. Eman dominated in every aspect of the game,swatting away shots with ease and closing out the interior all game long. His presence in the paint was simply too much for the opposition, as he collected every errant rebound and finished around the rim with ease. His triple-double (17pts 16rbs 11blks) overwhelmed schoolhouse prep and helped Westwood to the blowout victory.
Emmanuel Dowuona Player of the Month
Emmanuel Dowuona is Westwood Christian's Player of the Month. He leads the boys varsity basketball team in scoring (22 ppg), rebounds (16 rpg) and blocks (4 bpg).
Emmanuel is an excellent leader in the school maintaing a 2.9 gpa. He is being recruited by several Division 1 programs.
Westwood 79 - Mater Lakes 61
Our Warriors traveled to Ft Lauderdale to participate in the Annual Westminster Academy Holiday Classic. Playing versus Mater Lakes Academy in the opening round of competition, our Warriors wasted no time. James began the quarter with back to back "takes" to the bucket, resulting in two easy baskets and setting the tone for our Warriors.
Deep in the trenches was Eman, working hard for position, resulting in numerous lay-ups and short range shots. Our guards did a great job of looking for Eman constantly in the low-post and he rewarded them with 15 first-half points. Senior David Monell drained 10 points in the opening half, while also working hard on the defensive end. Sebastian rose to the occasion in the one, battling for every rebound and controlling the paint with hustle and determination.
"Sebas" played a great game, finishing with another double-double (10 points & 10 rebounds) while also playing smart help-defense while clogging the lane. Emmanuel once again could not be contained. He simply willed his team to the 20-point lead by converting at an extremely high rate around the rim. His game-high 25 points were no match for the opposition. Eman did a major portion of his damage on the defensive side of the ball, swatting away shots at every chance, finishing with a season high 11 blocked shots. Eman also pulled-down 16 rebounds, completing his first triple-double of the season.
Westwood 78 - Ferguson 69
In a game that featured numerous runs by each squad, our Warriors finally rose to the occasion in the second quarter to get back into a game that almost turned ugly. Coming out of the gate somewhat lethargic and with no energy, our Warriors fell behind by a large margin, forcing several line-up changes and strategy adjustments.
One constant remained the same, Emmanuel's dominance in the paint. Eman shook-off some early-game jitters, and sparked a huge run offensively for the Warriors, with back-to-back put-ins and while also cleaning up the glass on both ends of the floor. He hooked-up with teammate Shelby Osceola on several offensive possessions, resulting in the Warriors climbing back into the ball-game. Shelby nailed three consecutive 3-pointers in the second period to rally the troops and give our Warriors a slim lead into halftime.
As both teams battled back-and-forth, our Warriors relied heavily on the inside presence of Eman and it paid dividends late in the game. Emmanuel scored 14 4th-quarter buckets to go along with a game-high 16 rebounds while swatting away 5 shots as well. In the waning moments of the game, Shelby drilled 2 back-breaking 3-point daggers for our Warriors, propelling them to the slim victory.
Under Armour Holiday Tournament
Emmanuel Dowuona was named to the All-Tournament 1st team of the Under Armour Holiday Classic. Eman averaged a tournament-high 25ppg, to go along with 14.7rpg and 4.4bpg. while leading the Warriors to a 2-1 record
Playing the the Under Armour Holiday Tournament gave our Warriors another opportunity to compete against the best South Florida has to offer. Tipping-off versus a formidable team like Matter Academy proved to be a an eye-opener for our boys, as we played the best first half we have all season. Crisp passing led to numerous buckets around the rim and smart decision making led to several long-distance shots as well.
The second half was more of the same with our Warriors finding our dominant inside presence consistently. Emmanuel Dowuona was a "man amongst boys" in this contest, swatting away shots and protecting the rim with his sheer presence and smart play. His 5 blocks and 16 rebounds kept the warriors in the hunt throughout the game, as he shut-down anything that came in the paint.
Eman's game-high 28 points we too much for his opposition, as he slammed-down dunk after thunderous dunk. Our Warriors did an admirable job in his game and found their niche inside by feeding the ball into the post and working the offense much better. Once again Eman was "the man" as he carried the team with yet another overwhelming performance.
Westwood 70- St John Neumann 60
Our Warriors packed their bags and headed across the State to take on St John Neumann in Naples Fl. The game-plan for this contest was a simple one and the players executed it to near perfection. Get the ball inside.
Having an interior weapon like our Warriors possess this season is a blessing that no one can deny. Our young Warriors are finally realizing it and using it to their advantage in a major way. Emmanuel Dowuona was a player that simply would not be stopped, as he roared through the lane and scored almost at will.
No matter what the defense did, "Eman" found a way to overpower his opponents. His thunderous dunks and strong finishes around the rim to go along with a dominant defensive effort, led to the victory for our Warriors.
Eman finished the contest with 28pts 15rbs and 4blks. His stat line was staggering as was his effort in this one, as he literally manned the middle on both ends of the court. Our perimeter players shared the ball and found the right person offensively while finally finding their defensive purpose as well.
Once the "Warrior D" was in place, the lead ballooned and the victory was at hand. Glimpses of greatness were on display in this game as our Warriors continue to mature and gain knowledge while putting the necessary effort it takes to get the job done.
Westwood 98- Sommerset 21
Our Warriors wasted little time in opening up a commanding lead versus Sommerset, highlighted by Emmanuel's thunderous dunk in the beginning frame.
Senior David Monell came out on fire, knocking-down 12 points in the opening quarter, along with 5 assists. Our pressure-style of defense was simply overwhelming for the opponents and are slowly becoming a staple in the Warrior attack. The sophomore tandem of James and Sebastian worked together to perfection on offense, as they converted at a high rate from inside 15 feet.
Sebastian nailed jumpers from the baseline and from the elbow while also finding his counterpart many times. James returned the favor with some good passes from the post, while also finishing at the rim with ease. Sebastian led all scores once again, getting another double-double in the process, finishing with 18-points & 14 rebounds while James chipped-in with 14-points and 8-boards himself. It was a full-team effort in the rout, as almost everyone got their names in the stat-sheet.
Warriors 74- St Brendan 73
Our Warriors came out ready to defend their home-court with a relentless effort in the press and halfcourt trap. They forced a number of errant passes and mistakes by their opponents while forcing an early time-out. Their team-first attitude was on full display, spreading the ball around offensively resulted in numerous open looks, as they knocked-down 4 3's in the opening quarter.
Matthew Mejias found his stroke from long-range, burying 4 3's to go along with his 18 points. His offensive outburst proved to be huge for our Warriors, as he mixed in a few nifty drives to the basket as well. Matthew's 3rd-quarter barrage, helped open-up a close ball game and give the Warriors what seemed to be a comfortable lead.
Twin brother Mikey Mejias drained a crucial 3-pointer as time expired going into halftime to help fuel the comeback for our Warriors and also hit a pair of free throws late in the game to help seal the win. Sophomore Sebastian Guitian manned the middle quite effectively, starting the game with a big-time rejection of an opposing players shot, and added another 3 blocks throughout the game. His 10-points and more importantly his defensive and rebounding efforts were greatly needed in this contest.
Junior Shelby Osceola rose to the occasion in this one, putting in 4 quarters of solid basketball and efficient play. His defensive plays in transition to go along with heady decision-making, made an impact bigger than the stat sheet can show. Shelbys game-high 22 points, including 6 3-pointers, propelled our Warriors to the tough win and clearly put himself atop the mantle as the Warriors captain and "go-to" player.
Westwood 61- Ransom 35
After a solid week of practice and hard work, our Warriors were ready to take on their opponents and it showed right from the opening tap. Shelby got the "3-point party" started with a long-range shot from the top of the key, then mixed in a drive to the basket, followed by another dagger from long distance. This quickly forced Ransom into a time-out but to no avail, as our Warriors knocked-down another 4 3-pointers in the quarter.
"Big-man" Emmanuel controlled the paint defensively while being constantly double-teamed, resulting in various open-looks for his teammates. His mere presence in the paint causes major problems for opposing players and helps open up the perimeter for his teammates. Junior Moises Brown displayed his accuracy from downtown as well, drilling 2 3-pointers to go along with some feisty defense and all-out hustle.
The full-court pressure applied by the Warriors helped open-up a commanding lead by halftime, collecting 13 steals in the first half alone. The second half featured more all-out pressure and hustle-plays from everyone on the roster, as the lead ballooned to over 35 points. The sophomore interior tandem of Sebastian Guitian & James Ametepe gobbled-up defensive rebounds at a high rate which led to more fast break opportunities and to the blowout victory.
Having a team consisting of solid contributors from the entire roster is a blessing and something to watch as the season progresses. If they continue to stay dedicated and disciplined, the sky is the limit for this Warrior team.
Sebastian Guitian Player of the Month
Westwood Christian High School recently named sophomore Sebastian Guitian the Player of the Month. Sebastian is a starter on the boys’ varsity basketball team and maintains a 3.9 GPA. His hard work and dedication have been a Blessing to the school and the basketball program.
Week 1 of the new season began with a hard-fought game versus SLAM Academy, a game originally scheduled for a Home game but switched last-minute to Away. The abrupt change affected our Young Warriors and it showed with some unforced turnovers and ill-advised shots. Our Warriors hung tough through quarter #1 behind the hot-hand of junior Jules Molina and his outside touch. The opponents opened-up the lead in the second half and gave our Warriors a nice "wake-up call" to start the varsity year. Senior David Monell led the team with 25 points and 5 assists.
Getting back to basics was the theme in the Warriors second game of the year, facing old-foe Palmer Trinity. Our Warriors came out determined to bounce-back and display the true champions they are. A stifling man-to-man defensive approach led the way for our Warriors, as they suffocated their opponents and opened-up a solid lead early on. Forcing numerous turnovers while converting them into easy buckets helped propel Westwood to a comfortable lead. Sophomore Sebastian Guitian carried the load on both ends of the floor for our Warriors, with a game-high 19- points (3 3-pointers) to go along with a team-high 10-rebounds and 5-blocks. This "bust-out" game for Sebastian is more proof what the Warrior coaching staff has been saying all along "Sebas is a star in the making. If he continues his work ethic and humble attitude, the sky is the limit". Junior Mikey Mejias made is presence known in a major way, "locking-down" Palmer's top playmaker, holding him to 4-points in the second half while aggressively setting the tone for the defensive effort of his team. Moises Brown came off the bench to provide a big spark, with slashing drives to the basket and numerous trips to the free throw line. His intense style proved to be a big difference in changing the tempo of the game. Forcing their opponents into 19 turnovers and less than 30% from the field, allowed our Warriors to cruise to the double-digit win and get them back on the winning track.
Our Warriors used a balanced attack on both ends of the floor to easily eliminate their opponents down in Islamorada Fl. Island Christian had no shot and our young Warriors used this outing as an opportunity to run through offensive sets and get plenty of minutes to the entire squad. Senior Alexis Gonzalez led the way with a game-high 11-block shots to go along with 12-points (1 3-pointer). Chris Hernandez came off the bench to record 5 steals while providing the type of intensity needed to earn playing time and help our Warriors throughout the season. An easy early- season victory for the Warriors helped cap off the first week of play.
305 Hoops Recruiting Combine
Sophomore Sebastian Guitan participated in the 305Hoops player recruiting combine along with classmate James Ametepe & senior David Monell. David did his usual long-distance damage while James capitalized on his opportunity to handle the ball and showcase his overall game.
Sebastian put on a very respectable display of offensive prowess, hitting mid-range shots while also extending into 3-point territory as well. His combination of size, length, and face-up abilities propelled him into the All-Star game where he continued to shine.
David Monell Lights Up Scoreboard
Senior David Monell lit up the scoreboard in the Junior Orange Bowl Pre-Season Showcase, combining his dazzling passes with an offensive array of moves to the basket and long-range shots.
His 6 3-pointers and 25 points led the way for the Warriors in the consolation game versus Coral Gables High.
New Additions Meshing Well Early On
Our Warriors have been hard at work with numerous new faces added to the roster Senior David Monell brings his electrifying offense game and strong defensive abilities to a roster that is returning a few key pieces as well. Shelby Osceola is back for his junior year, aspiring to capitalize on a good off-season and summer of hard work. Sharp-shooter Matthew Mejias returns while adding to his arsenal with athletic drives to the hoop, while teammate/brother/defensive stopper Mikey Mejias has been added to the fold. Sophomore sensation Sebastian Guitian has been a huge boost for our Young Warriors, capitalizing on his opportunities while displaying his offensive firepower.
Four key backcourt players have also been added to the group, each bringing their unique talents to the team. Junior Moises Brown's relentless defensive pressure along with fellow junior Jules Molina's heads-up play have meshed well with sophomore Sandro Taveras & freshmen Willy Merlet constant on-ball pressure and fearless attack.The combination of James Amtepe & the much anticipated arrival of superstar Emmanuel Dowuona could tilt the scale in the Warrior's favor as they challenge yet again for a State Title.
With the roster still not complete and a few extra players joining the mix, our Warriors will be hard at work in the coming months as they prepare for another exciting season of Warrior Hoops.