- CONTACT INFORMATION
- ADVERTISING RATES
- FACEBOOK PAGE
- MAIS HOME PAGE
- YouTube Clips
- SOUTHERN SPORTS & TRAVEL TESTIMONIALS
- AUDIO INTERVIEW ARCHIVES
- CALLIE'S MISSION
- 2012/13 MAIS ATHLETIC SCHOLARSHIP SIGNINGS
- 2013 SOFTBALL SCORES ARCHIVES
- 2013 MAIS FINAL FOOTBALL RANKINGS
- 2013 FOOTBALL SCORES ARCHIVES
- 2013/14 BASKETBALL SCORES
- 2013 ATHLETIC ALIGNMENT
- 2013/14 BASKETBALL RANKINGS
December 22, 2010
December 21, 2010
**My apologies go out for the lack of updated basketball scores over the past several days. I took a much needed four day break and headed northeast to Boston to attend the Patriots and Packers game and do a little site seeing. I also picked up a few new slang words while there but I’ll reserve caution and use them only when irritability sets in.
**If you wanted parity in boy’s basketball this season you may get your wish. I’m going on record in saying that while MRA is the team to beat don’t be surprised if there are serious contenders from both Class AA and A at the Overall Tournament in February. Oak Forest upsets Jackson Prep then losses to Bowling Green, Hillcrest beats East Rankin who beats Brookhaven and Prep beats Hillcrest in a tight one. How’s that for parity?
**On the girl’s side it’s apparent that MRA has distanced themselves a bit from the other Class AAA squads. In Class AA it’s Leake and Brookhaven and everyone else at this point in the season. Delta, Claiborne and Riverdale are outclassing most of their opponents in Class A and Trinity is getting better each week.
**Upsets that occur will be sent out via twitter beginning next week.
**Readers will see three new businesses advertising on Southern Sports & Travel over the next few days. Please support them whenever possible. Without the schools who have generously offered to sponsor Southern Sports & Travel and the opportunity to attract more business advertising, all the travel and time covering MAIS athletic events would be impossible.
**Anyone interested in doing short game articles of their school’s basketball team and having 18,000 readers view it each month can email me at email@example.com to get set up.
**With the 2010 football season in the books there will obviously be coaching changes. As most know, Columbia Academy has named Brookhaven assistant Kenny Williams as their new head coach. I’ll have more on Coach Williams next week.
**Please continue to send in photos and/or articles on MAIS players in any sport signing scholarships to continue their athletic careers.
**I’ll be heading north next week to take in the Brookhaven Christmas Tournament. There are some great matchups that may give a glimpse as to what we all could see in February.(Above) Gillette Stadium in Foxboro
December 15, 2010
Marshall Academy senior Josh Vanderburg has signed a scholarship to play baseball for Delta State. Vanderburg is a catcher for new head coach Bart Jenkins.
Standing L to R- Jane Hubbard (Marshall Academy Headmaster), Renee Vanderburg (Mother), Hunter Vanderburg(RHP/INF Brother 10th grade),Johnathan Vanderburg (Father)
December 12, 2010
The soft spoken quarterback passed for 22 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions on the season along with 8 rushing touchdowns but playing the quarterback position hasn’t always been his preference. “I didn’t play any football until the 8th grade and the first time I played quarterback was in the 9th grade but I would rather play wide receiver or running back,” said Dent.
Dent’s transformation at quarterback since enrolling at Trinity as a sophomore has been nothing short of remarkable.
“Givonni’s progress since the 10th grade has been amazing,” said Trinity head coach David King. “He has grown leaps and bounds not only on the football field but in the classroom and it’s been because of hard work and dedication.”
Dent’s abilities were on full display in two of Trinity’s biggest wins of the regular season. In week seven Class AA and 2nd ranked River Oaks made the trip to Natchez for a much anticipated matchup between two unbeatens. In that game Dent put together one the best performances of any MAIS player during the 2010 season.
Against the team that would ultimately win the Class AA Championship the senior passed for 342 yards and 2 touchdowns, rushed for 105 yards and 2 touchdowns and had 2 interceptions on defense in a 42-21 thumping of River Oaks.
Dent further solidified his standing as one of the premier players in the MAIS the following week as the Saints traveled to Brookhaven to face the defending Class AA Champion and top ranked Brookhaven Cougars. The task was a huge test for Trinity as they looked to halt Mississippi’s longest high school winning streak which stood at 22 games and contain one of the better quarterbacks in the state, Brookhaven senior Chandler Rogers.
Dent directed his squad to a 34-28 upset and in doing so passed for 283 yards and 3 touchdowns.
According to Dent those two wins over the top two teams in Class AA on successive Fridays and a South State Championship win over Sylva Bay will stand out as the biggest wins while at Trinity.
Asked about who has been his biggest influence over the past three seasons Dent said, “It’s been special teams and strength and conditioning coach Bill James. I knew Coach James before coming to Trinity and he has helped me so much with being mentally and physical ready on the field.”
Having produced a 38-5 record and two state titles as starting quarterback over the past three seasons the senior has received lots of attention from college recruiters. Not only has Dent’s numbers on the offensive side of the football been an attraction but his 12 interceptions and stellar performance on defense has drawn serious looks. Four of those interceptions were returned for touchdowns and a fumble recovery returned for a score upped his total to five defensive touchdowns on the season. The senior picked off interception number 13 during the recent MAIS All-Star game in which he was named the South Defensive MVP.
Dent has received offers from Delta State, Alcorn, Southeastern Louisiana University and Bethune-Cookman but remains undecided and will wait until the national signing date gets closer to make a decision.
When I posed the question that ten years from now when he looks back at his high school football days at Trinity what he would remember most the senior replied, “Most definitely winning back to back state titles.”
December 11, 2010
Not often is the first district game of the season filled with an emotional charge that permeates throughout a gymnasium but that was the case in last night’s intense battle between District 3-AA heavyweights Hillcrest and Simpson. The significance of winning last night’s matchup at Hillcrest was huge in two respects for both squads. Getting the upper hand in district play is crucial and the return of former Hillcrest head coach James Crain who took over the helm at Simpson last spring added to the playoff type atmosphere.
(Above) Hillcrest senior Preston Haynes with 2 of his game high 18 points
In the end, two top five Class AA teams battled as if it were February and Hillcrest gave their first year head coach Wes Prather something to be elated about as the 3rd ranked Cougars held off 4th ranked Simpson in a 56-48 dogfight.
The first basket of the game would not come until the 6:10 mark of the opening quarter when Hillcrest senior Preston Haynes drained a 3-pointer from the wing. In a quarter that saw the lead change hands seven times Simpson would finish with the upper hand on a Devin Millis 3-pointer from the wing with 39 seconds left to give SCA a 14-12 advantage heading into the second quarter.
(Above) Devin Millis (#21) of Simpson just misses on a block attempt of a Preston Haynes (#12) lay-in
Hillcrest reeled of three straight baskets to start the second quarter and take an 18-14 lead. After Simpson’s Cory Herrington drained a 3-pointer to trim the lead to 18-17 Hillcrest put together a 9-2 run as Preston Haynes converted on two baskets and served up an assist to Grant Baker for another to move out to a 27-19 lead.
Simpson stayed close and a Devin Millis 10 footer off the glass with 17 seconds remaining in the half pulled the Cougars to within six points at 29-23 heading into the break.
Simpson rallied in the third quarter on the hot shooting of Devin Millis. The 6’3” senior nailed down three jumpers and at the 1:46 mark canned two free throws to tie the game at 35-35. (Above) Austin Herrington (#31) of Simpson with a 1st quarter drive
Hillcrest converted on 2/4 free throws in the last minute of the quarter to take a 37-35 advantage into the final eight minutes.
Following a Garrett Taylor free throw that trimmed the lead to 37-36 to start the final quarter Hillcrest exploded with nine quick points. Lee Ogletree scored on an inbounds play, Preston Haynes deposited a transition basket, Chris Prather converted a free throw, Malcolm Hopkins set up Ogletree with an assist and a Haynes steal and basket gave Hillcrest their biggest lead at 46-36 with 5:45 remaining.
Hillcrest extended their lead to 50-38 at the 3:58 mark on Lee Ogletree’s basket in the paint and Simpson would get no closer than five points. Hillcrest junior Ben Lewis would put an exclamation on the game with a dunk to close out a 56-48 home district win over Simpson. (Above) Ben Lewis (#30) of Hillcrest slams home the last basket
Preston Haynes led Hillcrest with 18 points, Ben Lewis added 12, Lee Ogletree 9, Terrance Staten 7, Chris Prather 5, Robert Johnson 3 and Grant Baker 2.
Drew Millis had 18 for Simpson, Austin Herrington 10, Josh Hankins 8, Cory Herrington 5, Garrett Taylor 3 and Dylan Kennedy and Josh Broadhead 2 each.
Hillcrest improves to 8-2 and 1-0 while Simpson suffers their first loss and falls to 10-1 and 0-1.
Simpson would control early on in the opening quarter as sophomore Brittany Gardner accounted for six points to give SCA a 7-4 lead with just under five minutes gone.
Hillcrest took their first lead at 7-6 on two Kayla McAdams free throws but Simpson would close the quarter with a Lauren Griffin offensive board and put-back to take a slim 12-10 lead into the second quarter.
Amber Divinity’s offensive rebound and basket halfway through the third quarter gave Hillcrest a nine point cushion at 28-19 but Simpson started heating up. Lauren Griffin canned a 3-pointer from the wing and both Callie Martin and Griffin pulled down offensive rebounds and scored to narrow the deficit to 28-26 with 1:48 left in the quarter. (Above) Hillcrest freshman Christina Berryhill (#12) drains a 3-pointer
Simpson would draw even with Hillcrest at 33-33 at the 4:11 mark of the fourth quarter on a Lauren Welch 3-pointer from the wing and took the lead on Brittany Gardner’s bucket at 35-33 following a Hillcrest turnover.
In a fourth quarter that was tied two times and produced five lead changes it came down to clutch shooting from both squads to extend the contest into overtime. With Hillcrest hanging on to a 38-37 lead Simpson senior Lauren Welch sank a 3-pointer from the corner with 59 seconds remaining to put SCA on top 40-38.
Hillcrest knotted the game at 40-40 as Christina Berryhill calmly canned two free throws with 41 seconds remaining in regulation.
Two minutes into the overtime period and tied at 42-42 Hillcrest senior Amber Divinity’s half court steal and lay-up gave the Lady Cougars a slim two point lead but an offensive rebound and score from Simpson sophomore Brittany Gardner evened the score again at 44-44 with 1:22 remaining.
The final 21 seconds of the overtime period is where the Hillcrest senior-freshman combination of Divinity and Berryhill shined. Berryhill drilled a 3-pointer from the wing as the Hillcrest student body erupted and Divinity canned two free throws with 9 seconds left to seal up a big District 3-AA battle over Simpson at 49-44.
(Above) Callie Martin (#23) of Simpson gets a jumper off
Divinity and Berryhill each had 16 points to lead Hillcrest. Kristen Kliesch added 8 points, Kayla McAdams 7 and Jaden Goff 2.
Brittany Gardner led Simpson with 12, Lauren Welch added 10, Lauren Griffin 8, Kasey McWilliams 5, Hallie Stubbs 4, Abby Dunston and Callie Martin with 2 each and Natalie Sullivan 1.
Hillcrest improves to 5-4 and 1-0 while Simpson falls to 6-2 and 0-1.
December 10, 2010
Courtesy of Kenny Mister, The Southern Press
GREENVILLE — Most high school athletes are thankful to get interest from colleges in one sport. But Eric Brozovich isn’t most athletes.
The Washington School senior baseball and football standout said he received interest from several colleges in both sports. But when it came down to his true passion, he knew his love for throwing a baseball was greater than launching a football.
And on Wednesday afternoon, he answered the final question: What college should he attend?
Brozovich signed a scholarship to play baseball at nearby Delta State.
“I just wanted to stay close to home,” said Brozovich, who has been the Generals’ go-to guy on the diamond and the gridiron. He was Washington School’s ace pitcher last season and has led the Generals to two MAIS state state titles in three years as quarterback.
Brozovich said he considered going with football, but he couldn’t overlook his love for baseball.
“I like football, but I have a deep passion for baseball, so I’m pretty sure I made the right decision,” he said.
It was also good news for Washington School baseball coach Jeff Walls, who once pitched for DSU and helped lead the Statesmen a Gulf South Conference title in 2000.
“It’s a real exciting day for me because I know what’s in front of him. And I really think he’s going to fit in there,” said Walls. “And it’s a place where I’ll get to go watch him play.”
Brozovich said he will be on the mound at DSU, but Statesmen coach Mike Kinnison will also give him the opportunity to branch off to other positions.
“(Coach Kinnison) said I can try dual positions, so I’m going to try that out and see where that goes,” said Brozovich.
Brozovich, who was named the Delta Democrat Times’ Pre-season Offensive Player of the Year in football, is quite talented on the gridiron as well.
So, what are what chances DSU fans will see him on under center one day in Cleveland?
“There’s still a slight chance,” said Brozovich. “....Right now probably not, but you never know. Things change.”
Southern Sports & Travel, By Darron Thomas
Just two weeks ago most of the Leake Academy boy’s basketball team was playing for a Class AA state championship, last night the Rebels overcame a 10 point third quarter deficit to take a 63-58 triple overtime win on the road over Canton.
Wesley Webb and Ryan Sessums teamed up for 46 points as the Rebels improved their record to 3-5 but most importantly upped their District 3-AA mark to 2-0. In posting a 2-0 district record the Rebels have needed four overtime periods as a Tuesday night encounter with Lamar resulted in a 73-66 overtime win.
Canton looked sharp in getting out to an early 6-2 lead following a Calvin Brown 17 foot jumper three minutes into the contest but Leake began showing signs that the rust was giving way as they knotted the game at 9-9 with a Ryan Sessums offensive rebound and put back at the 3:08 mark. (Above) Canton's Manning James (#24) hits over Wesley Webb (#10) of Leake
Canton would inch their way back to a six point advantage at 15-9 with baskets from Brown and Manning James and took a 15-11 lead into the second quarter.
Canton opened the second quarter on fire as Nathan Simpson canned a 10 footer from the baseline. Taylor Pierce converted on a fast break basket and Chris Reed nailed a turn-around jumper in the lane to give the Panthers their biggest lead at 21-11 and forcing Leake to burn a timeout to regroup just one minute into the quarter.
Leake inched their way back and at the 1:45 mark trimmed the deficit to 23-19 on a Joshua Peoples turn-around jumper from 10 feet. Aaron Shepard’s basket from the elbow with under ten seconds remaining in the half pulled the Rebels to within two points at 27-25 but Canton finished the half with a half court heave from Taylor Pierce at the buzzer to give the Panthers a 30-25 halftime cushion.
Canton matched their biggest lead of the game after a Manning James 3-pointer from the corner and a James floater in the lane pushed the lead to 37-27 with 5:15 remaining in the third quarter but Leake hung around with baskets from Wesley Webb and Joshua Peoples as the Rebels ended the quarter down 39-31. (Above) Canton's Nathan Simpson (#5) just gets a shot off over Joshua Peoples (#43) of Leake
Leake pulled to within four points at 43-39 halfway through the fourth quarter as Grant Wilson served up Ryan Sessums with an assist and Sessums canned two free throws with just over two minutes left in regulation to cut the lead to 43-41.
A Canton turnover with 55 seconds remaining set the stage for Leake junior Wesley Webb who nailed a 15 foot jumper with 35 seconds remaining to tie the game at 43-43. Canton’s last second attempt at a game winner would fall short.
Leake senior Joshua Peoples canned a 3-pointer from the wing nine seconds into the overtime period as the Rebels took their first lead since 7-6 at the 3:55 mark of the first quarter. The Rebels increased their lead to 48-43 on a Ryan Sessums offensive rebound and put back at the 3:16 mark but Canton fired back with a 3-pointer from Manning James and a Calvin Brown floater in the lane to knot things up at 48-48 with 2:33 remaining.
With the game tied at 50-50 Canton chewed up clock to set up a last second attempt but could not convert as the game headed into its’ second overtime.
Each team could only muster a basket each in the second overtime as the tempo was controlled by Canton’s slow down to offset the loss of Chris Reed who had fouled out in the first overtime period. Taylor Pierce of Canton hit a 12 foot jumper and Leake’s Austin Shepard converted in the paint to provide the lone baskets of the period. (Above) Wesley Webb (#10) of Leake scores the Rebel's go ahead basket in the third overtime period
Canton canned four unanswered free throws and with 1:35 remaining in the third overtime period enjoyed a 58-54 lead but the Panthers would not score again as Leake junior Wesley Webb drilled a 3-pointer from the top of the key, converted on a steal and hit four free throws to closed out the game with a 9-0 run to take home a 63-58 district win.
Webb led all scorers with a game high 26 points, Ryan Sessums added 20, Joshua Peoples had 11, Aaron Shepard 4 and Austin Shepard 2.
Canton was led by Manning James with 19 points, Calvin Brown had 12, Taylor Pierce 11 and Chris Reed and Nathan Simpson 8 each.
Leake will be in action this evening as they host Mt Salus before traveling to Hebron tomorrow.
Canton (6-3 & 0-1) will host Lamar tomorrow.
Southern Sports & Travel, By Darron Thomas
The Leake Rebelettes improved their season mark to a perfect 14-0 last night with a 76-25 pounding of Canton. Jenny Wilbanks and Hannah Peoples combined for 44 points as the Rebelettes upped their District 3-AA record to 2-0.
Canton did all they could to stay close in the early going and two minutes into the opening quarter tied the game at 4-4 on a Katie Pepper basket. Leake’s pressure defense kicked in soon after and following three consecutive Jenny Wilbanks baskets the Rebelettes saw their lead increase to 18-8 with just over two minutes left in the quarter. Leake took a 23-9 lead into the second quarter and promptly produced a 23-4 run as Wilbanks and Hannah Peoples heated up from 3-point range to push the advantage to 46-13 by the half.
Leake was led by Hannah Peoples with a game high 24 points, Jenny Wilbanks added 20, Hannah Moore 9, Shelbi Horn, Kristen Chipley and Amber Pierce 5 each, Shelby Howard 4, Anna Crawford 3 and Anna Nowell, Carly Thomas and Madison Powers all had 2 each.
Katie Pepper and Bailey Russell had 6 apiece for Canton and Jordan Ray added 5.
Next up for Leake is a home date with Mt Salus today and a visit to Hebron on Saturday.
Canton (10-5 & 0-1) will host Lamar in a District 3-AA matchup tomorrow.
December 8, 2010
Southern Sports & Travel, By Darron Thomas
Madison-Ridgeland Academy made the short drive to Flowood last night and came away with two thrilling overtime wins over Jackson Prep.
MRA senior guard Caleb Miskelly led the Patriots with 26 points as the Patriots edged out Jackson Prep 58-51 in overtime while junior guard Anna Claire Henderson hit a 12 foot bank shot at the buzzer to propel the Lady Patriots to a 46-45 overtime win.
In a matchup that pitted top ranked Jackson Prep against second ranked MRA the first half of play lived up to the hype associated with the early season encounter between the two AAA powers. Five minutes into the opening quarter a Justin Malone basket in the paint gave MRA a 10-5 lead but Prep would answer with two Thomas Dunbar baskets to close out the 1st quarter with the defending Overall Champions holding on to a 10-9 advantage. (Above) Caleb Miskelly of MRA (#13) halts the shot of Prep's Thomas Dunbar
Jackson Prep took their first lead of the night at 12-10 on a Travis McCain 3-pointer from the wing just 10 seconds into the 2nd quarter but that lead would be short lived as MRA went on a 10-2 run, six of those points coming from Caleb Miskelly, to take a 20-14 lead with 3:50 remaining in the half. Prep answered with a Ryan Buchanan 18 foot jumper and De Graeber’s drive with 2:26 left trimmed the deficit to 20-18. Prep knotted the score at 20-20 as Graeber served up an assist to Thomas Dunbar on the Pat’s next possession but MRA would take a 22-20 lead into the break on a Justin Malone basket in the paint.
Matt Porter’s 3-pointer from the corner halfway though the 3rd quarter gave MRA their biggest lead at 31-24 and it looked as though MRA and their pressure defense would allow them to pull away from Jackson Prep as they took a 37-29 cushion into the final quarter of play. (Above) Prep's De Graeber (#12) scores 2 of his 18 points on the night
Alec Rawlings nailed a basket to give MRA their biggest lead of the night at 39-29 with 6:53 remaining but Prep stormed back with an 8-0 run to cut the MRA lead to 39-37 forcing the Patriots to call a timeout to regroup with 4:34 left in regulation.
MRA would extend the lead back out to five points at 46-41 following a Caleb Miskelly steal and lay-in with 1:46 remaining but Prep wouldn’t go away.
After each squad traded baskets to make it 48-43 Prep finished with a flurry. After canning the first of two free throws De Graeber’s second attempt was strong off the rim but Ryan Buchanan pulled down the rebound and converted to narrow the deficit to 48-46. Following an MRA turnover Graeber’s driving basket tied the game at 48-48 with 54 seconds remaining in the 4th quarter. Caleb Miskelly’s desperation heave at the buzzer fell short to send the game into overtime. (Above) MRA senior center Justin Malone (#34) added 14 points
Justin Malone’s lay-in to start the overtime period gave MRA a slim 50-48 lead but Graeber tied the game as he drove and hit a basket over Malone with 2:33 remaining.
MRA controlled the next two minutes as Caleb Miskelly hit two buckets and a free throw and Tyler Cummins converted on a basket, plus one to ice the win.
Miskelly had a game high 26 points to lead MRA, Justin Malone added 14, Matthew Camp had 6, Tyler Cummins 5, Alec Rawlings 4 and Matt Porter 3.
De Graeber led Prep with 18 points, Thomas Dunbar added 11, Ryan Buchanan 10, Clay Hubbard 5, Douglas Haick and Travis McCain 3 apiece and Gage Ray 1.
MRA improves to 6-4 while Jackson Prep slips to 9-2.
Neither squad could establish any separation in the opening quarter and with just over five minutes gone Prep grabbed a brief 7-6 lead on Elizabeth Wade’s 3-pointer from the wing. MRA finished the final two minutes with a 6-0 run to take a 12-7 lead into the 2nd quarter.
(Above) Prep's Elizabeth Wade (#20) guarded by Jessica Whitehead (#24) of MRA
MRA stretched their lead out to seven points at 16-9 following two Anna Claire Henderson free throws at the 5:13 mark of the 2nd quarter but Prep would outscore MRA 8-6 to stay within striking distance at 22-17 at the half.
MRA would extend the margin back to seven points at 24-17 on a Caroline Kerley 10 foot jumper to start the 3rd quarter but Prep hung around and pulled to within two points at 31-29 on consecutive baskets from Emily Russell and Evans Horsley with 1:42 left in the quarter.
MRA appeared to be control as the Lady Patriots held a 41-35 lead with 1:01 left in regulation.
With 36 seconds remaining Laurel Bane converted on a basket to trim the lead to 41-37. After a tie ball gave possession back to Jackson Prep sophomore Keavy Noblin went baseline and scored with 19.6 seconds left to make it 41-39.
(Above) MRA junior Haley Cox spots up for a 3-pointer in the 1st half
Prep immediately regained possession on MRA’s inbound pass as Laura Lee Smith stole the pass and scored to tie the contest at 41-41 with 8.6 seconds left in regulation.
In the four minute overtime period Haley Cox would put MRA on top converting on one of two free throws but Laurel Bane’s drive and lay-in gave Jackson Prep a 43-42 lead, their first since a 7-6 lead midway through the 1st quarter.
Jessica Whitehead nailed down two free throws to put MRA back on top with 43 seconds remaining in overtime. Jackson Prep’s shot attempt at the 9.2 second mark went array and MRA would use a timeout to set the table for the remaining seconds in overtime and holding a slim 44-43 lead.
MRA then turned the ball over on the inbounds play and compounded the turnover with a backcourt foul with 6.3 seconds remaining putting Prep’s Laura Lee Smith at the free throw line. Smith calmly sank both free throws to give Prep a 45-44 lead as the home crowd went into hysterics.
(Above) Laura Lee Smith (#14) of Prep with a 1st half jumper
Those 6.3 seconds was all the time guard Anna Claire Henderson would need as the junior pulled up from 12 feet on the right side of the lane and went glass at the buzzer to give MRA a dramatic 46-45 overtime road win.
Caroline Kerley led MRA as the senior had 14 points, Haley Cox added 13, Tori Hines and Anna Clair Henderson had 6 apiece, Jessica Whitehead 5 and Marye Mitchell 2.
Elizabeth Wade led Jackson Prep with 13 points, Laurel Bane added 11, Laura Lee Smith 9, Evans Horsely 8 and Keavy Noblin and Emily Russell 2 each.
MRA upped their season mark to 9-1 while Jackson Prep fell to 10-3.
Post game interview: **MRA girl's coach Stephen Force
December 6, 2010
**The South’s 27-21 win over the North in last week’s All-Star game signaled the end of the MAIS 2010 football season. Congratulations to state champions Jackson Academy, Pillow, River Oaks and Trinity. The 2010 season was in complete contrast to the 2009 campaign that seem to provide rain each Friday night.
**Seven players are being considered for the 2010 Southern Sports & Travel Player of the Year. A group of seven objective individuals will determine that player based on statistics, leadership and value to their team. The player will be announced next week.
...Dylan Cruz of DeSoto
...Givonni Dent of Trinity
...Tip McKenzie of Trinity
...Cody Prewitt of Sylva Bay
...Chandler Rogers of Brookhaven
...Teshadi Talton of River Oaks
...Ja’Quez Taylor of Pillow
**River Oaks is the first Louisiana team to win a Class AA title since the 2002 Oak Forest squad that beat North Delta 17-14. The Mustang’s last state championship was in 2005 in Class A.
**Trinity captured back to back titles and the school’s fifth state crown with a win over Tri-County. The Saints, under the direction of head coach David King, have won four Class A state championships in the past ten seasons.
**The month of November proved to be record breaking for Southern Sports & Travel. The site received over 18,000 visits during the month and as basketball gets into everyone’s system that mark could get eclipsed in January and February.
**Lots of hours have been spent recently in an effort to compile basketball data on all three classes in an attempt to track all the teams throughout the season. I have been burning up the fax machine, email and text messages and for the most part have been met with lots of cooperation, however, for some bizarre reason there are some who want nothing to do with providing any information on their school.
**I’d like to send out a message to the MAIS with regards to the Overall Basketball Tournament in February. Much more needs to be done to celebrate such a great tournament for the fans and students particularly at halftime of the boy’s and girl’s championship games. There’s no reason the arena should resemble a wake during halftime on Championship Saturday.
**Please send photos and information for any MAIS athletes signing scholarships to firstname.lastname@example.org.
December 2, 2010
Southern Sports & Travel, By Darron Thomas
Most often in competitive sports slogans and phrases are thrown about in an effort to provide motivation to teams from junior high all the way up to the professional ranks. Not always do those slogans have a deep seeded meaning that those particular teams can reach around and ride throughout a season with success. There are however exceptions and Marshall head basketball coach Craig Dailey’s “We Believe” program has withstood the test of time throughout an 18 year coaching career that has produced nine state championships, numerous district titles and now, at the age of 40, 900 coaching wins.
Marshall swept Magnolia Heights tonight in Holly Springs to give Coach Dailey his 899th and 900th win. The Lady Patriots (8-5) won 40-30 while the Patriots improved to 10-1 with a 55-36 win.
A coaching career that began as an assistant to Mike Reans and Frank Miller at Delta Academy in 1992, Dailey took the girls head coaching position at New Albany High School the following year but made his way back to Marks, Mississippi to take over the entire Delta Academy basketball program the following year. It was there that Dailey’s “We Believe” program was born and every player since then has heard the story of what inspired the program. It was the death of Dailey’s mother his senior year and the lessons he learned from dealing with such a tragic loss that provided the inspiration to instill in his players to believe in something greater than themselves. In Dailey’s 12 seasons at the helm Delta won 9 state championships and were Overall runners up three times.
That belief was epitomized by a special player in Dailey’s first season at Marshall Academy in 2005. Graham Carson passed away in a car accident at the age of 18. “She had a zeal and energy that has never been touched before,” said Dailey. “She would be found at 6:00 a.m. shooting on the Gun after a bad shooting night. There have been kids with more talent, but none with more heart or more of a love for the game.”
Now in his sixth season at Marshall, Coach Dailey’s teams have won 8 district championships (Girls 4 & Boys 4) and three boy’s North State titles. In the 2008-09 season Marshall’s girls came within a basket of defeating Leake for the Class AA state crown.
If you’ve never had the pleasure of watching an individual that is a master of his craft it won’t take long to see that at a Marshall basketball game as Dailey paces the bench giving out instructions or working the officials with both skill and a glare that would rival a pit bull.
On a personal note….I first saw Coach Dailey during the state tournament at Brookhaven a few years back and my first observation was that he had to be unapproachable due to his intensity during the game. Last fall I received a hand written note from him with encouragement and support for my effort with Southern Sports & Travel. I’ve had the pleasure of talking with him several times since then and can attest that he is a special individual that any kid would love to play for. So here’s a big “Shout Out” to Coach Dailey on his 900th career win and wishing him 900 more.