Martha Alwal, Darriel Gaynor, Kendra Grant, and Jerica James were downright giddy Thursday evening.
CLINTON -- The Starkville Academy girls basketball team defeated Presbyterian Christian 54-33 on Saturday in the title game of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Overall State tournament at Mississippi College's A.E. Wood Coliseum. Maggie Proffitt scored a game-high 17 points and Sallie Kate Richardson added 12 to help the Lady Volunteers cap a 43-0 season, win their 52nd game in a row, and complete a three-peat of the MAIS Class AAA, Division II, Class AAA, and overall state championships. For more on this game, see Sunday's print edition of The Dispatch.
CLINTON -- Sallie Kate Richardson has eight points and Nora Kathryn Carroll has seven to help the Starkville Academy girls basketball team lead Presbyterian Christian 29-14 at halftime of the title game of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Overall State tournament at Mississippi College's A.E. Wood Coliseum. The Lady Volunteers (42-0) used a 22-1 run from the end of the first quarter into the second quarter to break the game open.
STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State University men's basketball coach Rick Ray realizes he won't be able to affect a change to the number of players on his roster for the rest of the season.
STARKVILLE --Tim Brewster is leaving what was supposed to be his tight ends coaching position at Mississippi State University football program for the same job at Florida State University.
STARKVILLE -- The Mississippi State University women's basketball team has brought the "Secretary of Defense" to the verge of tears on several occasions this season. None of those efforts compared to the one MSU delivered Thursday night. The result brought a "whew" to Vic Schaefer's lips as he savored his first signature victory.
STARKVILLE -- Adam Frazier has been waiting months to say four words about Mississippi State University baseball team's offense. "We told you so," Frazier said about the Bulldogs' hot start. "We told you all before the season started we could easily do more than we did last year, and that's what is happening." No. 5 MSU recorded its seventh game with double-digit hits Wednesday night in a 17-5 victory against the University of Rhode Island at Dudy Noble Field.
CLINTON -- When the Starkville Academy girls basketball team received a wake-up call during the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Class AAA State tournament last week, the Lady Volunteers didn't hit the snooze button. Starkville Academy responded from a close victory against Presbyterian Christian with one of its best efforts of the season in a victory against Madison-Ridgeland Academy to capture the tournament's championship.
Versatility is Jimmy Cockrell's calling card. Whether it's on defense or offense or on the football field or the baseball field, Cockrell has been a constant in the starting lineup the past three seasons for the Columbus High School football and baseball teams.
STARKVILLE -- The college journey is almost over. From the University of Oregon to Trinity Valley Community College to Mississippi State University, basketball has taken Darriel Gaynor on a winding journey that has had more than its share of ups and downs.
OXFORD -- Marshall Henderson was hitting 3-pointers, Murphy Holloway was getting easy dunks, and Reginald Buckner was patrolling the paint with big blocks and rebounds. The University of Mississippi men's basketball team is finally playing well again after a mid-season swoon. Now the Rebels hope it's not too late to make a run to their first NCAA tournament since 2002.
LEXINGTON, Ky. -- On the verge of being forgotten two weeks ago, University of Kentucky point guard Ryan Harrow now has control of his role and game. The same can be said for the Wildcats' resurgent Southeastern Conference and NCAA tournament prospects, much stronger after looking done not long ago.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Four players for two-time defending national champion University of Alabama football team have been dismissed from school following their arrests after two robberies on campus. University spokeswoman Deborah Lane said Wednesday that linebackers D.J. Pettway and Tyler Hayes, safety Eddie Williams and H-back Brent Calloway are no longer enrolled after a judicial review.
STARKVILLE -- Your eyes aren't deceiving you when you see Mississippi State University senior left-handed pitcher Chad Girodo. The reason Girodo looks different on the mound in his final season is because nearly everything has changed. He still throws from the left side, but his arm slot has changed and he has gone to a three-quarter delivery that has given new life to his slider and a changeup. The change has given Girodo a new-found confidence to attack hitters.
STARKVILLE -- It's easy to look at the rosters for the Mississippi State University and the University of Kentucky men's basketball team and see the different in depth and talent. While MSU's injuries and suspensions likely will make it difficult for Rick Ray and the Bulldogs to beat Kentucky at 7 tonight (WCBI), the first-year MSU head coach may want to look at the recruiting success coach John Calipari has had in recent years to help the Wildcats reload. According to Scout.com, Kentucky has had the top ranked recruiting class in the country each season since Calipari took over for the fired Billy Gillespie in 2009. Kentucky is projected to repeat that feat with its 2013 recruiting haul.
STARKVILLE -- Junior Hunter Mullis is excited about the Columbus High School baseball team this season. "A lot of the guys on this team have been playing together since they were 8 years old at Propst Park," Mullis said. "We know each other. We play well together. I think we have a chance to have a special season."
JACKSON -- Tiffany Huddleston felt weird. Usually, the Starkville Academy standout is a center of attention. On the soccer field, Huddleston has a knack for creating scoring opportunities or finishing chances. On the basketball court, Huddleston has had a steady hand in directing the Lady Volunteers' offense and typically gets a fair share of attention because she is a conduit the team uses to get its offense going.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- The first half had a familiar feel for the University of Alabama and Auburn University: Good defense, scant offense. This time, Trevor Releford and the Crimson Tide broke out of the scoring funk without letting up defensively after halftime, en route to a 61-43 victory Tuesday night at Coleman Coliseum.
STARKVILLE -- The X-rays for Hunter Renfroe delivered good and bad news for the Mississippi State University baseball program. MSU coach John Cohen revealed the bad news is the junior outfielder has "a very, very small fracture" in his throwing hand. Renfroe suffered the injury Saturday afternoon after he was hit in the hand with a pitch in a 8-2 victory against Samford University. He stayed in the game and also played in the nightcap of the doubleheader against Purdue University.
STARKVILLE -- Of the nation's 347 Division I men's college basketball programs, Mississippi State University is 329th in experience. This statistic, created by basketball sabermatrician Ken Pomeroy and his website kenpom.com, isn't lost on MSU coach Rick Ray.
1. Columbus Speedway ready to race again LOCAL SPORTS
2. Starkville Academy soccer beats Heritage Academy to reach state final HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
4. MSU baseball looks to bounce back COLLEGE SPORTS
5. Notebook: MSU falls to Kentucky in overtime COLLEGE SPORTS