Dr. Stan Miller has just completed his second year as Starkville High School's athletic director. A Jersey City, N.J., native, Miller returned to Starkville in 2009 after serving a 14-year stint as the school's principal.
Tiffany Huddleston couldn't help but hold back a smile.
CLINTON -- As you wish. Starkville Academy girls basketball coach Glenn Schmidt hoped her team would get off to a fast start Friday afternoon against Jackson Prep for two reasons. Not only did Schmidt not want to twist and turn as the Lady Volunteers rallied in the second half from another double-digit deficit, but she also wanted to erase the memory of the last first quarter her team played against the Lady Patriots. Anna Lea Little and her teammates were only too happy to oblige.
CLINTON -- Anna Prestridge has been a part of a lot of fond memories as a member of the Starkville Academy girls basketball team. There are also some things she would like to forget. Leave it to coach Glenn Schmidt to remember one of those forgettable incidents and to bring it up one day before the team played in the semifinals of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools overall state tournament.
STARKVILLE -- For so many college basketball players, Senior Day is the end of how fans remember them. That isn't the case for Taylor Luczak. His story is just beginning. The walk-on and co-captain will suit up for his final game at Humphrey Coliseum at 4 p.m. today (Fox Sports Net) when the Mississippi State University men's basketball team takes on the University of Arkansas. Luczak hopes he and his teammates will get a chance to play because that will mean MSU has a comfortable lead late in the game.
STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State University softball coach Vann Stuedeman wanted her team to use last week's appearance in the prestigious NFCA Leadoff Classic as a learning experience. The Bulldogs showed a lot of what they learned Friday at the MSU Softball Field.
STARKVILLE -- The script for the Mississippi State University baseball team's game Friday night at Dudy Noble Field seemed destined to be a sequel of its most recent mid-week disappointment. But a five-run comeback in the final three innings provided a new and exciting ending for MSU in a 5-4 victory against the University of Connecticut.
STARKVILLE -- The feeling happened again to Mississippi State University starting pitcher Ben Bracewell. Bracewell, the Bulldogs' opening night starting pitcher this season, had to be removed from the team's 5-4 victory against the University of Connecticut on Friday due to soreness his right pitching elbow, according to MSU baseball coach John Cohen.
CALEDONIA -- Zia Saraiva doesn't think she is a loud mouth. It's just that when she gets on the soccer field she usually doesn't stop talking. In some sports, Saraiva's gift for gab could take away from her play and distract her team. But the Caledonia High School girls soccer team has gotten used to Saraiva's penchant for constant communication as a defender. In fact, her talkativeness helped anchor the Lady Confederates' defense the past three seasons.
Inexperience never was an excuse for Katie Proctor. When she first joined the Columbus High School girls soccer team as a freshman, Proctor didn't know any way else to play but to go all out. The score or the time remaining in the match didn't matter because Proctor realized even as a ninth-grader it was up to her to set a pace she hoped others were going to follow.
CLINTON -- One down, two to go. Reality can make the high of even a first Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Class AAA state championship wear off pretty quickly. Such was the predicament the Starkville Academy girls basketball team faced Wednesday in its first game at the MAIS overall state tournament at A.E. Wood Coliseum on the campus of Mississippi College.
If it wasn't for fishing, Bobby Zaiontz might not have realized he is a racer at heart. Twenty-two years ago, Zaiontz was living in Columbus and working as a flag man for late model races at Columbus Speedway and all over the Southeast. In between racing weekends, he would go out on his bass boat with his latest purchases and try to make the most of his hobby. That's when his life changed.
STARKVILLE -- Sharon Fanning-Otis wasn't one for euphemisms or pithy comments. Instead, the veteran coach was more likely to use her postgame comments to the media to break down the finer points of the game and highlight where her team excelled or fell short. True to her nature, Fanning-Otis was a teacher. She remained that way even in her next-to-last game as Mississippi State University women's basketball coach, a humbling 76-40 loss to the University of Kentucky.
STARKVILLE -- Fans of the Mississippi State University men's basketball program should do two things these next two weeks: grab your television guide and set your DVR.
CLINTON -- The Starkville Academy girls basketball team outscored Bowling Green (La.) Academy 18-2 in the fourth quarter Wednesday to rally for a 45-35 victory in the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools overall state tournament at A.E. Wood Coliseum on the campus of Mississippi College. With the win, Starkville Academy (36-5), the Class AAA champion, will play the winner of the Mt/ Salus Christian Academy-Jackson Prep game at 1 p.m. Friday in the semifinals.
STARKVILLE -- Talk about a must-win game. Everyone associated with the Mississippi State University men's basketball team seems to understand they don't deserve a berth in the NCAA tournament if they can't get a victory tonight in a game versus a last-place team in Southeastern Conference.
Starkville High executed three different hit-and-run opportunities to perfection Tuesday night. With offensive production like that, the Yellow Jackets did not need the 12 walks and two hit batsman issued by Columbus pitching or the six errors made by the Columbus defense. All of those extras led to a bevy of insurance runs as the Jackets belted the Falcons 18-4 in a five-inning prep baseball contest.
STARKVILLE -- It's only natural for the Starkville Academy girls basketball team to look to Anna Prestridge to be a leader. Many of the Lady Volunteers might not know it, but Prestridge grew up with a basketball in her hands and has played point guard all her life, so it isn't surprising she transitioned into that role at Starkville Academy.
WEST POINT -- With a drenched diamond and gloomy atmosphere, the West Point Green Wave overcame the elements to knock off Caledonia 6-3 in prep baseball action Tuesday night. The Green Wave (1-2) rocked the baseball for the first three innings and scored five runs. Four of those five runs came off the bats of starting pitcher Freddie Reed and eventual closer Leroy Calvert - both with two RBIs apiece.
JACKSON -- The Wayne County High School boys basketball team was simply better than Starkville in every way possible.
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