HAMILTON -- Lewis Earnest sat in a deer stand as a cell phone vibrated in his pocket.
Junior Rachel Hollivay wants to end her career at Heritage Academy with a girls basketball state championship.
Call Jared Shelton selfish. You also can describe the New Hope High School baseball team's senior infielder as a leader, always prepared to add to his list of gameday heroics.
STARKVILLE -- Starkville High School's first chance to play host to a North State track meet won't be on its campus, but make no mistake: It's a home meet. The Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 4A/6A North State meet will take place Saturday at Mississippi State's Carl Maddox Track facility.
MACON -- Depending on the season, sports talk in Noxubee County typically veers toward high school football or basketball. But the Noxubee County High School boys and girls track and field teams are doing their best to get people talking about their success.
MACON -- Seniors have a keen eye for detail. So even though Kendall Taylor is standing down the left-field line, more than a few hundred feet away from a billboard that displays the years and titles won by previous Central Academy teams, she knows the sign is incomplete.
STARKVILLE -- Kamau Bostic is leading Starkville High School's charge to another boys track and field state title. The junior distance runner logs the most minutes on the track as a miler, half-miler, and as a member of the 4x400-meter relay team.
STARKVILLE -- Every coach likes to see the heart and soul of his football team get a shot to play at the next level. An emotional leader and example of sacrifice and intensity, Starkville Academy's Matt Ward was rewarded for a breakout season with an offer to play at Mississippi College.
STARKVILLE -- Ty and Hayden Hendrix aren't the first family members to play baseball together at East Webster High School. The cousins want to be the latest to lead the Wolverines to a state title.
Yolanda Moore knew this day would come. She just didn't know when it would be. At 3:30 p.m. today, the words of former University of Mississippi women's basketball coach Van Chancellor likely will reverberate in Moore's head when she is announced as the new girls basketball coach at Heritage Academy.
MABEN -- The response to tragedy was natural. The baseball and softball teams of East Webster High School had sports put into perspective when a powerful tornado -- one of dozens across Mississippi and Alabama -- ripped through the Cumberland community and left their school in rubble.
STARKVILLE -- Last season, Swayze Hollenhead made a difficult position switch she knew was coming. For the first two years of her high school career at East Webster, she starred at third base and helped lead the Lady Wolverines to a pair of Class 1A state titles.
GREENWOOD -- The Heritage Academy golf team was up for the challenge. Stalled by rain and soggy conditions Tuesday at Greenwood Country Club, the Patriots fought off the elements and the hunters en route to a score of 318 that was good enough to win the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools AAA championship.
Pitchers often are put on a pedestal. Right-handers can be referred to a left-handers, and lefties have a special way of doing things that makes them unique. Those qualities are magnified in fast-pitch softball, especially at the elite levels of Division I, where pitchers usually are asked to do one thing: Pitch. Lauren Holifield and D.J. Sanders are breaking that mold.
Every team needs glue. Squads also need leaders who pick teammates up and help keep spirits elevated in trying times. Tyler Farnham is all of that in one player.
Sometime Saturday before the Class 6A North State track meet, Sammy Doughty will retrieve a bottle of green alcohol and Epsom salt from his bathroom closet. He will pour the contents in a foot tub, add hot water, and sit back on his bed and watch television.
STARKVILLE -- Not many eighth-graders have a shot at winning a state title, much less in Class 6A, the state's highest classification. But anyone who knows Starkville High School's Walker Mattox could see her rise to the top of the distance running chain coming from the longest straightaway.
Football always has fascinated Gerald "Tri" Nason III.
Beware of the curveball. It's a tricky, temperamental pitch that coupled with a few fastballs could help the Heritage Academy baseball team advance through the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Class AAA, Division II playoffs.
Parker Dunaway is a state champion triple jumper without a regulation-sized pit to practice in. Imagine a basketball player with half a court, or a rim and no net, a quarterback with a football and only 30 yards to play on, or a forward in hockey or soccer without a court or field.
1. Caledonia's Hollowell has carved out role as starter HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
2. MSU alters rotation with eye on South Carolina series COLLEGE SPORTS
3. Stokes wins Limited Late Model feature race LOCAL SPORTS
4. MSU softball rallies to beat No. 3 Florida COLLEGE SPORTS
5. Holland's home run sparks MSU's win against Auburn COLLEGE SPORTS