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Hot shooting LSU upends MSU

Posted 2/6/2016 in College Sports

BATON ROUGE, La. -- Antonio Blakeney scored a career-high 31 points Saturday to help the LSU men's basketball team move into sole possession of first place in the Southeastern Conference with an 88-77 victory against Mississippi State on Saturday night. Blakeney, a freshman whose previous single-game high was 22 points, hit 11 of 17 shots, including four 3-pointers. It was easily Blakeney's best outing against a team from a major conference and exactly what LSU (15-8, 8-2) expected when it recruited last season's Florida high school player of the year.



Starkville basketball teams earn top seeds

Posted 2/6/2016 in High School Sports

MADISON -- The Starkville High boys basketball team clinched the top seed in next week's Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 6A, Region 3 tournament with an 81-65 victory against Madison Central on Friday night. Starkville made it five wins in the last six tries against Madison Central in a rematch of last season's Class 6A state championship game. The contest was an easier victory than last month's 57-56 Starkville win at home.



New Hope boys beat Oxford

Posted 2/6/2016 in High School Sports

New Hope High School senior Carlos Brooks liked the mind-set of his team Friday night. "We knew we had to be mentally tough to win this game," Brooks said. "The first time we played (Oxford). We simply weren't tough enough. We knew that would be the key to having a better outcome." The Trojans had a better attitude and a much better 3-point shooting touch in a 72-65 victory in a Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 5A, Region 2 boys basketball game at Trojan Gym.



Oak Hill Academy boys beat Columbus Christian for district title

Posted 2/6/2016 in High School Sports

WEST POINT -- Oak Hill Academy basketball coach Brian Middleton made a couple of suggestions at halftime Saturday night. Those suggestions included guarding harder, forcing some turnovers, and getting the transition game going. In the second half, the Raiders down their coach's wish list and knocked each item off with perfection. Oak Hill Academy erased a halftime deficit with a near-flawless effort on defense to post a 54-46 victory against Columbus Christian Academy in the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Class AA, District 2 tournament championship game.



Columbus basketball teams sweep Tupelo

Posted 2/6/2016 in High School Sports

It's all coming together for Artavious McDyess. The 6-foot-7 senior has the frame and athleticism to dominate the paint, but the intensity, focus, and effort weren't always there earlier in the season. When Columbus High School boys basketball coach Luther Riley saw his forward receive a technical foul for aggressively dunking a ball and hanging on the rim at Forest Hill recently, he stopped himself from chastising McDyess. "He'd had the confidence all along," Riley said, "but you could see him start to apply it. You could see it then." McDyess' intensity showed Wednesday night in the Falcons' district matchup against Tupelo, where he was an impact on the offensive and defensive end, blocking and altering shots, scoring points and rebounding in a 75-60 win.



Weatherspoon's rebounding takes off in SEC play

Posted 2/4/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Ben Howland didn't want Quinndary Weatherspoon to rebound on the offensive end when he first arrived on campus.



Alabama gets another No. 1 class

Posted 2/4/2016 in College Sports

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- The Alabama football team closed its signing class with a flourish, picking up two coveted linebackers to help complete another top-rated recruiting haul. Five-star linebackers, and in-state prospects, Ben Davis and Lyndell "Mack" Wilson made their announcements for the defending national champion Crimson Tide on Wednesday. It added a little suspense to the final product even if neither decision came as much of a surprise.



New Hope's Spann will get chance at Copiah-Lincoln

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

Resiliency is a word that suits Brenton Spann. After missing his senior season as a member of the New Hope High School football team, Spann could have given up and searched for a different path without the sport he loves. Instead, Spann tried his best to stay in shape and to focus on his academics in case he ever received an opportunity to return to the football field. He admits that road wasn't easy and that there were many times he doubted if he would realize his goal.



Columbus shows signs of growth with seven off to college

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

Wednesday was a beginning for Chris Deloach and the rest of the Columbus High School football program. A year ago, Randal Montgomery arrived from Hazlehurst High with championship designs for a program that wasn't accustomed to success. After three-straight trips to the Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 3A State title game and a championship in 2012, Montgomery realized hard work, buy-in, and dedication were going to be essential ingredients to the transformation of the Falcons' program.



Noxubee County's Simmons picks MSU

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

MACON -- Jeffery Simmons didn't want to wait until the last minute. If he could have, the Noxubee County High School five-star defensive end would have made his college decision on the first day of the recruiting process to end it as quickly as possible. But Simmons soon found himself in a predicament of his own making because the schools he picked -- Alabama, Mississippi State, and Ole Miss -- all had plenty to offer him, and even more fans who wanted him to join their football programs.



West Lowndes' Spencer picks Holmes C.C.

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

Tyshon Spencer always thought basketball was the sport for him. At 6-foot-4, 220 pounds, Spencer had the size and the athleticism to pave a future for himself in the sport. But 6-4 student-athletes are easy for football coaches to spot in the hallways, especially at Class 1A schools, so it didn't take long for West Lowndes High School football coach Anthony King and other members of the coaching staff to ask Spencer to come out for the football team.



Smaller class targets MSU's needs

Posted 2/4/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Dan Mullen hasn't been known for being one of the top recruiters in the Southeastern Conference. The eighth-year Mississippi State coach's highest-rated class came last season when the Bulldogs pulled in the nation's 18th-best class, according to 247Sports. That class featured seven four-star prospects, many of whom will play vital roles this season.



Starkville's Brown, Jones now rivals

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

STARKVILLE -- A.J. Brown and Kobe Jones are now rivals. In the last three years together as members of the Starkville High School football team, Brown and Jones helped the Yellow Jackets finish 13-1 and advance to the Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 6A North State title game in 2014 and win a MHSAA Class 6A State championship in 2015. They also were members of The Clarion-Ledger's Dandy Dozen this past season.



Starkville sends 10 to college after title season

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

STARKVILLE -- Ricky Woods was a proud coach Wednesday. The Starkville High School football coach saw 10 of his players sign National Letters of Intent on Wednesday on National Signing Day, including three with Division I schools and seven with junior colleges. Wide receiver A.J. Brown signed with Ole Miss, defensive tackle Kobe Jones signed with Mississippi State, and defensive lineman Lorenzo Dantzler signed with Southern Mississippi to complete the Division I trio. Defensive lineman Maleke Bell and running back Avery Brown (East Mississippi Community College), quarterback Montario Montgomery and wide receiver Rontavis Clark (Itawamba C.C.), tight end Parker Lemm (East Central C.C.), defensive back Terrance Grayer (Mississippi Delta C.C.), and defensive back Aretavious Hendrix (Mississippi Gulf Coast C.C.) completed the signing class.



Moody leads Ole Miss past Missouri

Posted 2/4/2016 in College Sports

COLUMBIA, Mo. -- The Missouri men's basketball team made Stefan Moody work for his points Wednesday night. The Tigers didn't make the Ole Miss senior work hard enough. The prolific guard had 23 points and hit two free throws after getting fouled in the lane to put Ole Miss ahead by a point with 13.4 seconds left in a 76-73 victory.



Ole Miss lands one of SEC's top classes

Posted 2/4/2016 in College Sports

OXFORD -- The Ole Miss football program went toe-to-toe with some of the nation's biggest names for some of the nation's elite prospects Wednesday. The Rebels won some battles and lost a few others, but still finished with a consensus top-10 class.



Starkville Academy's Wood signs with Mississippi Gulf Coast

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

STARKVILLE -- When Starkville Academy senior Carter Wood was ready to pick a college, he had a large support group to consult. Wood played three varsity seasons under coach Jeff Terrill, who had previously coached in the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges at Itawamba Community College. Wood also knew he would have the love and support of parents, Bart and Rebecca Anne Wood.



West Point football team sends eight to colleges

Posted 2/4/2016 in High School Sports

WEST POINT -- West Point High School football coach Chris Chambless felt like a proud papa Wednesday. Chambless had eight seniors sign college scholarship offers during a National Signing Day ceremony in the school's auditorium. "We will always be indebted to this senior class for helping bring West Point football back," Chambless said. "These players will always be a part of my family. As a coach, this is why you are in the business. To be able to see players advance to the next level is rewarding." While West Point didn't have a large senior class, the class was packed with talent.



Ole Miss enjoying winning, recruiting success

Posted 2/3/2016 in College Sports

The Ole Miss football team has made a rapid rise into the upper tier of the Southeastern Conference in the standings and on the recruiting trail. The Rebels -- led by fifth-year head coach Hugh Freeze -- have become a landing destination for some of the most talented players in the country. The program's ascension in the recruiting ranks can be contributed to a little luck and a lot of winning. The Rebels were the only team to beat eventual national champion Alabama this season and finished the year with an impressive Sugar Bowl victory against Oklahoma State. Now with national signing day coming up today, five-star recruits are viewing Ole Miss as a potential first option, not an afterthought.



West Point's Lashley picks Alabama

Posted 2/3/2016 in High School Sports

Scott Lashley could have gone anywhere to play football. On Tuesday, the West Point High School offensive lineman gave a verbal commitment to Alabama. He will sign a National Letter of Intent with the Crimson Tide today with seven of his teammates on National Signing Day. Lashley was supposed to make his announcement at a news conference at the school, but bad weather in the area forced schools to be dismissed early and canceled the event, so he made his decision known on a video.



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