There would be something wrong if D.J. Sanders didn't smile when she was on the softball field. Regardless of whether she is at shortstop or in the circle, the New Hope High School freshman plays the game with joy.
JACKSON -- The Starkville High School boys basketball team's Class 6A state tournament run ended in the semifinals Wednesday with a 72-43 loss to Meridian High. The Yellow Jackets (19-9) struggled to keep pace with the Wildcats, who received a game-high 27 points from forward Rodney Hood and 15 from guard Matthew Hurn.
The New Hope High School girls soccer team's success is attracting attention. Coming off the program's best season, goalkeeper Brandi Brantley, defender Anna Holley, and midfielder Bridget Tedford signed scholarships Wednesday to play soccer at the next level. Brantley and Tedford will continue their soccer careers at Hinds Community College, while Holley will play at Itawamba C.C.
STARKVILLE -- Injuries never are good news, especially for high school seniors. Those setbacks are even more upsetting when they come right before the start of your final sports season and make you wonder if you will get a chance to do what you love with your friends.
STARKVILLE -- The student turned teacher has left a model for her teammates to follow. At 9 tonight, Mary Kathryn Govero will try to extend her career at least one more game when she leads the 11th-seeded Mississippi State women's basketball team against sixth-seeded Auburn (15-14) in the first round of the Southeastern Conference tournament in Nashville, Tenn.
REFORM, Ala. -- The defense hasn't rested this season for the Pickens County High School boys basketball team. Whether it has been with steals or with pressure that forces opponents into mistakes, the Tornadoes have lived up their billing and created a whirlwind of destruction on both ends of the floor.
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Ravern Johnson has little doubt the Mississippi State men's basketball team has talent on par with any other. The senior is doing his best to add a touch of consistency in an otherwise inconsistent season for the Bulldogs.
AUBURN, Ala. -- The Auburn University men's basketball team was halfway to another lopsided loss to the University of Mississippi. Their shots weren't falling while Dundrecous Nelson and the Rebels couldn't seem to miss. Then Kenny Gabriel scored 15 of his career-high 24 points in the second half and Chris Denson hit four straight free throws in the final 35 seconds Wednesday to help Auburn cap a 76-73 comeback.
HATTIESBURG -- After Preston Purifoy's 3-pointer rolled around the basket and fell through the hoop for what proved to be the game-winner, an understandably raucous celebration by the University of Alabama at Birmingham men's basketball team followed.
STARKVILLE -- Wendell Lewis is easily the most athletic post player on the Mississippi State men's basketball team. Even with heralded center Renardo Sidney turning heads with his inside-out offensive game, the quick-footed, explosive Lewis can cause comparable damage on defense and on the boards. He just hasn't showcased his skills consistently.
STARKVILLE -- Few people expected the Starkville High School boys basketball team to make it back to Jackson. Without two standout players from last season's Class 6A state title and Grand Slam championship squad, Starkville had a mountain to climb if it hoped to repeat as champs. At least it faces familiar foe to get to the summit.
Jared Shelton and Dillon Hawkins each had three hits and home runs Tuesday night to lead the New Hope High School baseball team to a 12-6 victory against Starkville at Trojan Field. Shelton's grand slam in a five-run fifth inning helped New Hope (3-0) take the lead for good after it trailed 4-0 after three and a half innings.
STARKVILLE -- Two softball teams coming off winless weekends met Tuesday looking for a much-needed win. Caledonia High School made it happen with a 15-2 victory against Starkville High. The Lady Confederates had an offensive punch they didn't see in losses to Saltillo and Hamilton on Friday in which they had scored just two runs.
STARKVILLE -- Drew Pellum and Hunter Bolin combined for a no-hitter Tuesday to lead the Starkville Academy baseball team to a 14-0 victory against Oak Hill Academy. Pellum earned his first win of the season by striking out seven and walking one in four innings. Bolin cleaned up the fifth and final frame by striking out two.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- As Dee Bost drove the court with less than 10 seconds on the clock, Wendell Lewis knew he had to be in position under the basket to score off either an assist or a rebound. He also knew he had little room for error.
OXFORD -- The University of Mississippi's Chris Warren darted to his left and then sprinted down the lane toward the basket, taking on all five Alabama defenders as he flew through the air for an acrobatic layup. For most players, it would have been a bad decision. For Warren, it's another two points.
STARKVILLE -- Chris Stratton's scoreless streak continued Saturday in the Mississippi State baseball team's 5-3 victory against Belmont. The sophomore earned his second straight win of the season after giving up four hits and no runs in 7 2/3 innings. He struck out 13 and sat down the Bruins in order in five innings.
The Mississippi State women's basketball team is at its best when it shares the basketball. That probably could be said for any team, but that interconnectedness on offense hasn't been there consistently this season for the Lady Bulldogs. The first 8 minutes, 14 seconds Thursday night offered a glimpse of what could be to come next season.
STARKVILLE -- There's no guarantee siblings who play the same sport will develop the same way. Differences in height, weight, and athleticism can leave a glaring difference between the players, especially when they play on the same team. At best, a coach can hope the players possess a passion for the game and good work ethic. Starkville High boys basketball coach Greg Carter has that in brothers Mike and Steven Brand.
February high school baseball games never follow a script. It adds to the unpredictability of the action when your team doesn't give up. The New Hope High School baseball team showed Friday night that that trait could serve it very well this season.
1. Insell family readies for father-son matchup in Oxford COLLEGE SPORTS
2. Ole Miss shut out at Arkansas COLLEGE SPORTS
3. Starkville Academy falls in state championship game HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
4. MSU Notebook: Holmes making habit of finding end zone COLLEGE SPORTS
5. Starkville defense swarms all over Southaven HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS