STARKVILLE -- Colby Runnels understands now the word "starter" is what he makes of it.
Fresh off a chance to showcase their skills for state college coaches, five area Mississippi Association of Independent Schools fast-pitch softball teams were back in action Monday. Heritage Academy lost to Washington School 15-0 in four innings, Starkville Academy lost to Jackson Prep 1-0, Oak Hill Academy lost to Manchester Academy 11-7, and Central Academy beat Calhoun Academy 8-7, and Hebron Christian lost to Winona Christian 3-0.
WEST POINT -- Another lesson learned. The West Point High School football typically doesn't suffer back-to-back losses and then learn from the mistakes in those setbacks.
WEST POINT -- Forget about the present. It was clear Saturday night the future is pretty bright for the South Panola and West Point high school football teams.
CRAWFORD -- Randy Brooks wanted to run the ball Friday night. Forced to go to the air after the ground game "sputtered," Devalyn Bell provided a spark.
REFORM, Ala. -- Patrick Plott is happy to be back closer to home. If he had his choice, he never would have left Pickens County High School and his job as the school's football coach. But a certification issue and the lack of a certified teaching position at the school resulted in Plott leaving the school after only one season leading the football program.
ALICEVILLE, Ala. -- To classify Charles Moody as being excited about his first head coaching job might be an understatement. The former Alabama A&M All-American is pumped about making his debut this season with the Aliceville High School Yellow Jackets.
ABERDEEN -- As the immortal Yogi Berra was fond of saying, it was "déjà vu all over again" for the Aberdeen High School football team. For the second year in a row, the Columbus Falcons handed Aberdeen, the state's top-ranked Class 3A team, a season-opening setback.
LOUISVILLE -- Four second-half turnovers created by defense provided the difference Friday night as the New Hope High School football team defeated Louisville 17-12 in the season opener for both teams at Hinze Stadium.
MACON -- Even after a disappointing loss last week in the second annual Fall High School Jamboree, Noxubee County High School football coach Tyrone Shorter was convinced his team could still run the football.
CALEDONIA -- The Caledonia High School football team proved a little August heat wasn't going to cramp their style Friday night. Caledonia battled through heat cramps and fatigue to earn a 29-20 win against Nettleton in the season opener. The victory avenged a 28-7 setback to the Tigers last year.
STARKVILLE -- There are plenty of carries to go around in the Starkville Academy football team's option offense. But after rushing for a career-high 187 yards and three touchdowns Friday to lead Starkville Academy to a 38-3 win against St. Andrews Episcopal, junior running back Colby Runnels staked his claim for the lion's share moving forward.
STEENS -- Success for the Winona Christian football team this season will start with the offensive line. That may sound like a simple statement applicable to any team, but when you have seven seniors on your roster capable of playing on the offensive or defensive lines, you're going to win a lot of battles up front.
Here is a look at the prep football action Friday night in the state of Mississippi:
MERIDIAN -- Brandon Bell's fade pass to Cade Lott in the end zone with eight seconds remaining was the first part. The second part was Bell's conversion run behind Tyler Knight out of a jumbo set that allowed the Heritage Academy to complete an improbable comeback in a 37-36 victory
A little communication goes a long way. Robert Gardner only wishes it hadn't taken a disappointing loss to Presbyterian Christian to affect that kind of change.
STARKVILLE -- One of the better, low-scoring defensive struggles of 2010 took place when the Noxubee County High School football team defeated Starkville 14-7 in the regular-season opener for both squads. Starkville coach Jamie Mitchell and Noxubee County coach Tyrone Shorter believe that type of encore is possible when the teams kick off the 2011 season at 7:30 tonight in Macon.
Now that the word is out, the Columbus High School football team will have to be even better. Columbus delivered a mild surprise Saturday, breaking out to a 21-0 lead en route to a 27-12 victory against Noxubee County in the second annual Fall High School Jamboree at Mississippi State's Davis Wade Stadium.
CALEDONIA -- Pitching and defense don't discriminate. Although the combination typically may be associated more often with fast-pitch softball, the Hamilton High School slow-pitch team showed Thursday how far that timely tandem can take a team.
CARROLLTON, Ala. -- John Gartman isn't going to change the identity of the Pickens Academy football team because one player graduated.