STARKVILLE -- Starkville High School senior soccer player Christine Mazzola remembers her eighth grade year when the Lady Jackets advanced to the second round of the North State playoffs. "I still have a t-shirt," Mazzola said. "Since this is my last season, I want to do a little better this time around." Starkville will again try to begin a postseason run today when the Lady Jackets play host to Center Hill in a first-round Class 5A playoff matchup. Match time is 5 p.m. at the Starkville High football stadium. The Starkville and Center Hill boys will also follow with a first-round playoff match, slated for a 7 p.m. start.
Leadership is crucial when you're building a program. A year ago, Mary Nagy helped the New Hope High School girls soccer team establish that foundation as it won its first playoff game and advanced to the second round before losing to state power Ridgeland.
Transformations typically don't happen overnight. But Columbus High School boys soccer coach Ben Moore has watched this season as a team that won one game in 2010-11 has won six this season and has acc
STEENS -- Billy Thomas never doubted Ross Moore. Even after a shoulder injury forced the senior to miss his final season with the Immanuel Christian football team, Thomas knew Moore was going to find a way to work through his rehabilitation and return to the basketball court.
STARKVILLE -- The up and down style of Canton was just what the Starkville High School boys basketball team wanted to see Friday night.
STARKVILLE -- "Thirty-two forever." Those words proved to be the rallying cry the Starkville High School girls soccer team needed Friday night to earn its biggest victory of the season.
STARKVILLE -- Anna Prestidge is the answer to the trivia question: why has the Starkville Academy girls basketball team been so successful? At least that's what Lady Volunteers coach Glenn Schmidt said after her team's 40-25 victory over a powerful Pillow Academy squad.
Load up the pistol because the Heritage Academy football team is about to learn a new system. Barrett Donahoe, the architect of that system at Copiah Academy and Marshall Academy, was in Columbus on Friday to take the first step in building the Heritage Academy football program into a state title contender.
STARKVILLE -- Not having the game of baseball last year changed Nick Brooks' life. On Thursday, that same game paved the way for him to take the next step in a positive way when he signed to play baseball at East Mississippi Community College.
"It's pretty much a done deal." Those were Barrett Donahoe's words this morning when he was asked if he had officially become the new football coach at Heritage Academy.
Eleven days isn't a lot of time to make progress. But Columbus High School boys basketball coach Sammy Smith liked what he saw from his team Tuesday night in a 49-41 loss to Tupelo in a Class 6A, Region 1 game at Columbus High School. In the girls game, Kiandria Patterson had 25 points and Maggie Proffitt had 19 to lead the Columbus girls to a 69-41 victory.
Junior forward Cade Lott knew right away where his Heritage Academy boys basketball team's performance Tuesday night ranked this season. "It was the best game we have played all year," Lott said. "Easily. There is no question about it. We played really well." Few in attendance at the Heritage Academy Gym disagreed. Heritage Academy scored the game's first eight points and rolled past Immanuel Christian 65-37. The teams managed a doubleheader split, as the Immanuel Christian girls earned a 51-45 victory in the opener.
In the long winding road of a high school basketball season, teams can learn lessons along the way. When Starkville High lost its first two games of the season at the Joe Horne Christmas Classic in Columbus, Carter fell like his team could learn falling twice, while being the state's top-ranked team.
There's no denying baseball is Christian Dale's first love. Recent years have seen the Columbus High School junior spend most of his off time playing with travel baseball teams throughout the region in hopes of honing his skills and taking his game to the next level.
The most successful New Hope High School boys basketball teams of recent memory have thrived on a swarming work ethic that suffocates opponents. That mentality has been passed from team to team -- like a prized possession -- that is to be nurtured and respected because it can lift a squad out of the deepest doldrums.
In one of the best point guard matchups of the area, Columbus High School's Kiandria Patterson finally got help from her friends to preserve a win over South Panola. Columbus was able to maintain its perfect record in region play with a 66-52 victory over an unpset-minded Lady Tigers squad due to more energetic defensive effort in the second half and the emergence of junior wing player Maggie Proffitt. The Columbus boys then followed with a 50-32 victory.
STARKVILLE -- A familiar face was back at Starkville High School on Wednesday. In three weeks, that same face will be back in a dugout as the leader of the school's baseball program. On Tuesday night, the Starkville School Board approved the recommendation of Starkville High School Athletic Director Dr. Stan Miller that Danny Carlisle be brought back as the school's baseball coach.
Heritage Academy boys basketball coach Yandell Harris stressed one thing to his squad Tuesday night: Rebound the basketball on the defensive end. The players took the veteran coach's advice to heart as they dominated the defensive rebounds en route to a 46-30 victory. The schools split the doubleheader at Heritage Academy, as the Lady Volunteers rolled to a 67-42 victory in the opener.
STARKVILLE -- It was the Jacolby Mobley show Tuesday night at Starkville High School. The senior guard fired from anywhere beyond the 3-point line and scored a career-high 35 points in a dominating 91-64 home victory against Aberdeen.
STARKVILLE - While Sunday's memorial service for Starkville High student Devin Mitchell could have taken on a somber note, participants decided to make it a celebration of the young man's life instead.
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